Big giant head

In Other News

No time for a sidebar tonight. I have to go desert-proof my truck. Gotta load up water, shovels for digging out, check the spare, top off the radiator, and clear out the fast food wrappers so Steve has somewhere to put his feet.

Saturday - May 22, 1999
Mission Improbable

Remember that Mojave phone booth I talked about in the last entry? The one set way out in the middle of nowhere, 15 miles off the nearest highway, the one that was busy when I called at 2:00 a.m.? Well, it's still busy. I've talked with Steve of Evaporation, the guy who turned me onto it, and he's been calling and it's been busy for him, too.

This troubles us. That phone is out there for a reason -- we don't know what the reason actually is, but we figure there has to be one -- and it's just not right that it isn't ringing. With this phone being off the hook, there is disorder in the universe. This must not stand. Someone has to hang that phone up.

Someone will.

Tomorrow morning, 8:00 a.m., Steve is meeting me here at my house. We're going to pile into my Land Cruiser, crank up the tunes, and drive 230 and some odd miles out to that phone booth to hang it up and restore order to the universe. No need to thank us; someone has to do it and we're just the guys with enough time on our hands...uh, I mean do it. You're welcome.

I figure we'll hit the booth sometime around noon, maybe 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time. We'll stick around for an hour or so, taking pictures and doing...something, we don't know what yet. After hanging the phone up we'll need confirmation that it's working, so incoming calls would be helpful. Feel like helping out? Give us a call tomorrow at (760) 733-9969 from about noon to 2 p.m. Pacific Standard Time. We'll keep a log of all the people who've called and I'll post it here when we get back.

It should be great fun. Steve will be navigating (at least I hope so -- he said something about having a map, so I'm assuming he's bringing it) and, owing to the eclectic musical selections he lists on his web page, is also in charge of music for the trip. Me, I'm supplying the beefy 4-wheel drive wheels we might need if the road turns ugly. Working together, I believe we two journalers can make life safe for the rest of you, or at least have a good time trying.

Steve and I have never met, which should make the trip interesting. We'll be stuck in my truck together for something like 7 or 8 hours, which will be a damned long time if we find we have nothing in common, nothing to talk about. But I don't think that's going to happen. While you can never really know someone from their journal, I still feel I know Steve a little from his and we seem to have a lot in common. I think we'll do fine.

Beth is fine with me teaming up with a stranger. She reads Steve's journal and likes him from that. She just gives me a motherly smile and says "have fun." I can tell she thinks I'm weird, but she's used to thinking that. She's only worried that something will go wrong while we're out there in the great nowhere.

"Promise me you won't do anything stupid," she said.

"I can't do that," I answered. "I do something stupid every day. It's not like I plan it, you know."

She had nothing to say to that. She knew I was right.

My mother, on the other hand, is appalled.

"Oh, honey," she moaned. "I'm worried about this. You don't even know him? I don't like you going out into the desert with a stranger. What if he turns out to be an axe murderer?"

"What if I turn out to be an axe murderer?" I asked. "You wouldn't know if I were, would you? I mean, it's not the kind of thing you share with family, now is it? I might be one already for all you know."

I think that turned her around a little. I think now she's worried for Steve.


backward indexward onward

Copyright © 1999
Chuck Atkins