Road Trippin’


Create Your Own Visited States Map

This interactive map is floating around on the interwebs so I thought I’d give it a whirl. I’ve visited way more states than I thought, though a few of these are ones where I didn’t do much beyond stop to pee, have a snack or get gas, as most of my visits were during road trips with Pops and Momcat. We did several drives to New England when I was growing up, as summers in the DC area were humid and uncomfortable. Imagine living in a sweatsock or plastic bag and that’s what mid-Atlantic summers are like, though the beach areas are really nice.

My travels through the southern part of the U.S. were trips down I-95 to see my grandparents in Florida, and all my midwest travels are due to having family in Michigan. In 2008, I went to New Orleans on vacation: I went to Voodoo Experience, a 3-day concert event at City Park, to see a ton of amazing bands & singers, including Stone Temple Pilots, Nine Inch Nails, R.E.M., Thievery Corporation, Erykah Badu, Joss Stone, Wyclef Jean, etc.; I wandered around the French Quarter; I had a hurricane at Pat O’Briens; I ate beignets and drank coffee at Café du Monde. Great trip.

There’s a good chunk of the southwest I wouldn’t have seen if it hadn’t been for three cross-country drives from Maryland to California with Pops. The first was in the mid ’80s. Pops signed up with a car delivery service and we drove a two-seater Mercedes out to L.A., cutting through the middle of the U.S. I remember watching the speedometer hit 100 a few times in the desert – Pops had a blast driving that car. In 1991, our second cross-country drive took a southern route, and that’s when I first remember seeing the road sign for Galax, Virginia – the setting for my novel in progress (which is close to complete, whoo hoo!). The third cross-country drive was when I moved to California in early 2000, the station wagon loaded down with my computer and clothes.

I also wouldn’t have gotten to see Idaho and Montana if it hadn’t been for a road trip with Pops. Last summer he did what I call Pops’ Poker Tour, driving his car to California and stopping along the way to play Texas Hold ‘Em at various casinos. He spent a few days in CA with me, then we drove to Montana, stopping in Idaho and visiting Yellowstone along the way. Gorgeous drive.

Just looking at the map and thinking about all the places I’ve been gets me all nostalgic for a good road trip. I highly recommend them, especially if you have kids who are old enough to appreciate them. It’s such a fantastic way to learn about the U.S. and how people live in different parts of the country.

Where would you go on a road trip?

The Truth Could Be Out There, But We Have More Important Stuff to Do

Did you see this statement from the White House about alien life on Earth?

There were less than 25,000 signatures total on two separate petitions (numbers added by me):

1. WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:

Immediately disclose the government’s knowledge of and communications with extraterrestrial beings

This Petition calls for the President to disclose to the American people the long withheld knowledge of government interactions with extraterrestrial beings and call for open Congressional hearings to allow the people to become aware of this subject through those whose voices have been silenced by unconstitutional secrecy oaths.

2. WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:

formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race – Disclosure.

Disclosure Petition – Paradigm Research Group

“We, the undersigned, strongly urge the President of the United States to formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race and immediately release into the public domain all files from all agencies and military services relevant to this phenomenon.”

___

Hundreds of military and government agency witnesses have come forward with testimony confirming this extraterrestrial presence. Opinion polls now indicate more than 50% of the American people believe there is an extraterrestrial presence and more than 80% believe the government is not telling the truth about this phenomenon. The people have a right to know. The people can handle the truth.

Relevant Websites: www.disclosurepetition.info, www.paradigmresearchgroup.org

The response is typical government issue:

The U.S. government has no evidence that any life exists outside our planet, or that an extraterrestrial presence has contacted or engaged any member of the human race. In addition, there is no credible information to suggest that any evidence is being hidden from the public’s eye.

However, that doesn’t mean the subject of life outside our planet isn’t being discussed or explored. In fact, there are a number of projects working toward the goal of understanding if life can or does exist off Earth.

I don’t know which bugs me more, the fact that there are much bigger issues going on right now and this got a response, or that the alien conspiracy folks all banded together and thought they might actually get a straight answer from the Oval Office on whether or not this stuff is real.

Didn’t you people watch “The X-Files”? Yeah, yeah, it’s a fictional show. But what happened with Watergate, the Iran contra affair and [insert any other big political scandal over the last 25 years here] should prove that the Feds are never going to let people know whether or not aliens exist.

But if I see Obama letting his daughters walk around wearing tin foil hats, well, I’ll know the truth.

aliens, UFOs, X-Files, poster, Fox Mulder