Driving, Part 2

I'm in LA. Big country, this is. Before I jump back into the middle of it, I have something to tell you all:

iDid it. I bought an iPhone.

Generally when something is this hyped up, disappointment is inevitable. And I am indeed disappointed, if by disappointed you mean deeply, passionately in love with a little metal rectangle.

I hadn't intended on buying it until I had read the initial reviews first. And on June 29, when I passed the big Apple store on 5th Avenue in New York, I didn't even consider getting in the thousand-person line. But later that day, walking through the city, I passed an AT&T store, and saw that the line only totaled about 40 people. I looked at them all, and asked myself: "Was I really going to be one of the douchebags that stood in line for hours to get a phone? Is this really the kind of guy I was?" No, I decided. No, I was above that.

Then I glanced up at a big poster in the window displaying the iPhone, and immediately got in line.

I was there with my friend, Jesse, an insane person. So, while we were waiting, it was no surprise when he launched into his theories about how technology is the work of Satan Himself, and how people should simply spend their lives walking around silently, hugging each other.

Anyway, I had tickets to the Yankees game that night and had to leave before I had time to get the phone. On the outside I was frustrated that I had waited for over an hour for nothing. On the inside I was tragically disappointed.

A few days later, in Washington D.C., I passed an AT&T store in Dupont Circle, and popped in to see if they had an iPhone. They had a shipment coming "any minute." Any minute later, the shipment arrived. 3 phones. I grabbed one.

If you're one of the people interested in this topic, I'm sure you've read reviews, so I'll spare you mine. But in spite of some shortcomings as an actual phone, the iPhone makes every other phone seem like it belongs as a mid-90's technology. It's an utterly delicious toy. They say money can't buy happiness. They're wrong.

Anyway, continuing where I left off last Monday, in Montana--

Day 6:
We woke up in Missoula, Montana, home of the University of Montana. Missoula is a cool little town, with a friendly, hippy feel to it. We continued west, crossing into the skinny part of Idaho, and stopped in a little city called Coeur D'Alene. We weren't expecting much, and planned to basically stop for lunch and continue, but it turns out that Coeur D'Alene is a lovely little town on the edge of a beautiful lake, and, randomly, everyone is extremely good-looking. So we decided to hang around.

-Highlights: Coeur D'Alene being randomly kind of awesome.
-Lowlights: Me refusing to drive over the speed limit, still traumatized by the killer deer.

Day 7:
We embarked upon Washington State, and drove all the way to Seattle. On the way we passed about 844,309,417 evergreens, and, coincidentally enough, a bunch of small towns centered around the lumber industry. We stopped in once such town, and had a drink at a bar called "Top Notch Tavern," and chatted with an old guy who was a retired lumberjack.

We also stopped in a really small town for gas at one point, and everyone we saw had a ton of tattoos and piercings and died hair. Hipster-ville.

Eventually we made it to Seattle, where we were staying with a friend of Andrew's, who was in the process of building a house with his own two hands. The house was coming along, but at the moment it was slanty, so we stayed at his girlfriend's apartment.

-Highlights: Getting to know an old lumberjack; jumping in a lake in rural Washington.
-Lowlights: Burning my hands like a idiot trying to climb up and jump off a rusty metal post on the edge of the lake. It still hurts.

Day 8:
We spent the day in Seattle. It turns out that the whole rainy reputation is completely fabricated-- it was sunny all day. What a weird thing for everyone to lie about.

That night we went out on the town, and I wrote "BIRTHDAY BOY" on the front of Andrew's shirt, since he was, in fact, the birthday boy. After getting a ridiculous amount of attention from girls all night, Andrew decided he might wear the shirt year round. Our theory is that girls want to come up and talk to guys in a bar just as much as guys want to approach girls, but that they don't as much because they don't want to be perceived as slutty or desperate. Since the birthday provides a reason to approach someone in itself, a girl can be more outgoing without worrying as much about what her friendliness might imply.

Or, maybe, Andrew was just in good form that night. We'll never know.

-Highlights: Passing by the original Starbucks; Seattle weather.
-Lowlights: Failing to take a good picture of the Space Needle.

Day 9:
We drove south and headed to Oregon (my 49th state). Ridiculously nice coastal drive. We were exhausted upon hitting Portland and decided to call it a night. We stopped in a random part of the city and looked for a hotel. I have no idea whether we were just in freaky part of Portland or if Portland is a bizarre city in general.

But it was weird.

We walked around looking for a hotel, and there were drag queens, drugged-up hipsters, and bums everywhere. Andrew, who was especially freaked out, looked like Macaulay Culkin in Home Alone 2 when he keeps seeing crazy people and screams and starts running. Upon finding no vacancy anywhere, we ended up staying at a terrifying place called the Kent Hotel. Let's just say they had a poster in the lobby showing an upsetting before/after detailing the effects of a meth addiction. Bad times.

-Highlights: The coast.
-Lowlights: Portland nightlife.

Day 10/11/12:
Over the next 3 days we made our way down the coast, stopping in Eureka and San Francisco. These days were relatively uneventful, but there was one huge highlight: The Redwoods. I don't think it's possible to appreciate the magnitude and majesty of the Redwoods until you see them in person. Apparently the largest, and oldest, living thing in the world is a Redwood tree in Northern California (they keep the particular location of the tree a secret out of fear that some dick will try to cut it down). Apparently the tallest Redwoods are over 360 feet tall, with a 20 foot diameter, and are over 2,000 years old.

Anyway, some pictures:

If you need an evergreen, you can get one in Washington-

Most lumberjacks are manlier than you-

Rural Washington hipsters in their natural habitat-

I spent 20 minutes messing around with my camera settings, and this is the best I could do. I'm pretty upset about the whole thing-

The original Starbucks in Seattle-

This is the drawing on the wall of the original Starbucks that evolved into the familiar logo. The corporate people apparently thought the creepy pornographic hippy mermaid wasn't the way to go.

The beautiful Oregon coast-

Redwoods of Northern CA-

Redwoods have huge balls-

Everywhere you look...


Anonymous said...

I like Jesse...

OK Tim keep drivin', more stories.
Less 'space needle' type pictures ,
effort appreciated though.

frmr jhi ...

Anonymous said...

I live in Eureka. I can't believe I missed you!

clyde devins said...

You should photoshop yourself into more pictures !!!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'm still pretending to taste the difference in Smart Water and Voss' Artesian Water! :-)