10.17.2008

Trippin'

Yeah, yeah, a picture is worth a thousand words, blah, blah, blah, but it does not answer the million dollar question:

Was there any point to Tuesday’s election?

Was that Madonna I saw at the Chick n’Deli?

How was the drive to Florida?!

It was great. Easy, even. Ok, well, no 24-hour drive is easy per se, but it was aight. The key is to keep the kids strapped in their seats and throw scraps at them every couple of hours or so. And to turn up the volume of the music in conjunction with the volume being upped on the whining.

Honestly, the kids did great. Dove pretty much conked out as soon as the car went above 80 km (that’s kilometers, not miles, which we really had to get used to, because going 80km on a U.S. highway may anger your fellow drivers), and we didn’t even unpack the lifesaver baby crack DVD player until our 12th hour on the road. From then on, Bee was in a Dora-induced state of bliss, and on our first day alone we made it to Dalton, Georgia, 1000 km from home, just a little north of Atlanta. Pretty damn good, I’d say.

We broke up the second part of the drive into two more days, with a stop at my in-laws' trailer for the night. It stays year-round in a park on the Alabama/Georgia border near Eufala, and they spend much of the winter there. The trailer is anything but rustic, pimped out as it is with satellite, a computer, fireplace, wireless internet and a kick-ass porch that my father-in-law built for porch sittin’.

However, the surroundings and the rest of the people there? Um… rustic. The grounds are really nice, and the surrounding area is pretty country with the Chatahoochee running through it (YOU'RE a Chatahoochee!), and the people that live in the park year-round are nice racists. There’s no other way of putting it. Me and Chris talked about it at length, and agreed – they are not nice but racist; they are nice. And they are racist. The N-word comes up in casual conversation. And they welcomed me with warm handshakes and fresh-harvested oysters, but I am white. I have a very hard time divorcing someone’s personality from their hateful politics, so I’m glad we only stayed the one night. And I’m kinda glad that no one knew I was Jewish. Ask me about the Jew Gold billboard in Eufala some time.

(This should in no way reflect on the character of my in-laws. They are not there for the company; they are there for the golf and the weather and the proximity to far less racist places to take their trailer on road trips, and have the capacity to always see good in people and so can tolerate certain things that I cannot.)

So yeah, we leave buttfuck nowhere the next morning and head to Florida, which, don’t kid yourself, is the DEEP South. That means awesome food, weather and lots of Snowbirds such as ourselves, but it also means traveling through some of the tightest Bible Belt to get there. I’m just not used to it. In Canada, we don’t wear our religion and our politics on our sleeves (or our bumper stickers). I’m not used to all of the God talk; all the anti-choice propaganda; all the stupid little fish on the backs of cars. Some of it was entertaining, some of it baffling, and some of it downright offensive. Like the billboard (Billboard!) on the highway that showed a depiction of the twin towers burning, with this written beside the image:

Wake Up America! Profiling would have prevented this terrorist act from taking place!

Seriously.

And Covenant Trucking? Sorry, but a major WTF to that one. Especially to the slogan printed on the back of each and every truck:

It’s not a choice, It’s a child.

Actually, it’s a fucking fetus, and my fucking body, and I’ll thank you to keep your legislation off of it. Oh, and did I mention Fuck Off?

(No, I’m not pregnant; just making a point)

I did love this bumper sticker:

Criminals prefer unarmed victims.

Nice! Let’s all shoot each other.

Then there were the ones that just made me shake my head:

McCain/Palin 08

And

Women for Palin

But you know, I expected a few of those. And hey, we just reelected our own useless, Conservative Prime Minister and I thought we were an intelligent nation, so I have no reason to believe that the U.S. won’t enjoy another 4 years of neglect and abuse by the Republicans.

Sorry, I digress.

Anyway, I’m going on a bit, as usual, and I’ve probably managed to alienate my last 12 readers, so I better put an end to my rant. But let me end with this, my favourite U.S. bumper sticker of all time:

God, Guts and Guns Made America.

‘Nuff said.

Next up: Sun, sand and my own trail of tears.


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21 comments:

  1. Bumper stickers like those are one of the reasons I used to slap a Darwin fish on all my cars.

    Scary stuff out there, scary stuff.

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  2. I'm a little lost for words. This reminded me of all that I fear about america.

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  3. No YOU'RE a Chatahoochee!

    Seriously, though, those are some messed up bumper stickers. And let's not even get into what I think of bumper stickers in general..You pay tens of thousands of dollars for a car, and you want me to put a sticker on it? No thanks. (Have I alienated any bumper sticker lovers..?)

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  5. NoMo - there is a little, wee, grateful dead sticker on mine, but it's on my license plate 'frame,' and covers up the dealer's name. I'm all about the PLUR, baby ;)

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  6. No alienation here, K... it's just good to have you back. This was hilarious and terrifying.

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  7. well, you know you did not alienate me.

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  8. Actually happened in Florida (to me):

    Scene: Rib joint, one step up from a tin shack on the side of the road.

    Marla to server (though I think the term is definitely waitress down there): These are really, really good ribs!

    Waitress: We give God the glory!

    Marla: Um, that's great!

    Waitress (louder): We give GOD the GLORY!

    Marla: (slightly frightened look)

    Waitress: GIVE GOD THE GLORY!

    Marla: (nervously) Hallelujah?

    Waitress: Let's Give GOD the GLOR-EH!

    Everyone at tables nearby (loudly, some with hands in the air): HALLELUJAH!

    Waitress: (glares at Marla pointedly)

    Marla: (really loud) HALLELUJAH! (quieter) Check please?

    Please note: I have nothing against anyone's God, they were hands down (or up) the best ribs I've ever eaten (and so messy I had to drink my beverage holding the glass with my two wrists) -- but seriously, if I were God and really was listening, the constant loud vocal praise for such things as kick ass ribs would get on my nerves.

    So what I'm saying is, 'been there, and I get ya.

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  9. Oh Atlanta. That's where my in-laws live and I can tell you that it is a whole 'nother world down there...

    Love the photos. How cute are you guys!?

    Also, don't worries my little hush puppy you could never alienate my chatahoochee.

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  10. dude, we aren't all crazy, conservative, racist, pro-lifers. really, i promise.

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  11. Christine - I know it friend, I know it. But the crazy, conservative, racist, pro-lifers make for better copy ;)

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  12. Hey, florida is responsible for Bush in the first place, let's not forget... And yeah totally scary. Yikes.

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  13. This (and several other things!) are why I think you ROCK! And why I miss you across the stall-wall!

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  14. My husband's town in Sask had a billboard with Mother Theresa on it that proclaimed "Every life is sacred from conception to natural death."

    I'm fine with people wearing politics on their sleeves. It's when they wear them on my womb that I start to get techty and shrill.

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  15. I love you. I really forgot how much until I read this. You are awesomeness.

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  16. When my sister moved down "there" I was shocked at everything that you described. I thought that it was movie/tv stereotypes exaggerated but no, that is how it is. Scary sh*t especially how religion is forced onto the sleeve just so people "know" how to treat you.

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  17. And now we see why the British didn't fight all that hard to keep the US. ;) And I don't think they regret their choice, either.

    Seriously, some of the crazy in my country is disturbing. I feel like I'd fit in much better in Canada sometimes.

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  18. ah. seeing as how I'm originally from the Deep South (Louisiana) I know allll about the ignorance and scary. ass. shit. Seriously, it's like a whole other world down there. Maybe one of the reasons I hold tight to my little hippie heaven in northern California and my daughter has yet to see where I come from.

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  19. just did a road trip to North Carolina...our final destination was a NASCAR race...so to put it mildly, i hear ya sista.

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  20. wow,never thought people driving from
    Canada to Florida were labeling us Georgians as the scum of the earth based on bumper stickers and billboards

    if i ever make it to your beautiful land, hope i am not that shallow.

    also Marla i call BS on your story

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  21. Oh, Tony -
    I'm not going to even bother. I would have sent you a private note, but not surprisingly, you allow no access to a blog or other way of reaching you.
    And if you do make it to our beautiful land, you will find many things to blog about. But trailer parks that will not allow people of colour entry won't be one of them.
    Thank god for your new president, friend - you need him.

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