Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Austin City Limits and beyond...

The long-awaited trip to Austin is on, and I can feel the pressures of everyday life just dropping off already, and I haven’t even had my first Bloody Mary on the plane yet. I asked C yesterday at work if ordering a beer on a 6:20 a.m. flight would be inappropriate. I think it might be, even though my favorite Sunday morning breakfast is pancakes and beer.

We—wait a minute, what do you mean, “we”, white man?—forget in Boston that there’s a whole ‘nuther country out there. There’s 3,000 miles between Boston/New York and San Francisco, and most people on the East Coast don’t comprehend what’s out there. I grew up there. Long ago I stopped trying to explain it to my liberal friends in Boston. It’s like pissing in the wind.

We’re not in Kansas anymore—well, Boston, and it’s such a nice feeling. We just flew over the Mississipi River. I grew up in a river city, where the depth of the river was reported nightly on the news. It was a live thing, that people looked at and admired. There was commerce going up and down the river, barges filled with goal and fuel. A thoroughfare that preceded the Interstate system and airplanes and even the railroad, and it looks like it’s still working pretty well still. I saw two big barges churning up the water as we flew over. There’s squared-off farmland on the flood plain, of course. I say of course because that’s what I’d expect to see along a big river if there isn’t a city built there. Even with the Charles River flowing through the middle of the city, my friends back in Boston wouldn’t understand that.

I said in the Memphis airport during a layover, These are the people who scare the Espedrille’s off Europeans. Bubbas everywhere. Fireplug bodies with baseball caps pulled low over beady eyes, the brim rolled, and copious amounts of facial hair, mostly thick goatees. Ill-fitting blue jeans—relaxed fit, I guess is the best way to describe them, scuffing along in boots.

Reading the New York Times at 30,000 feet, the financial crisis is still so real. There’s no forgetting it. No putting your head in the sand. This crisis is so real and there’s a good chance that this country is over, I think. Really over.

No comments:

Web Analytics