Monday, March 23, 2009

Throw 'Em Up and See Where They Land

While I really don’t like to plan in advance (one of my favorite expressions—my Atheism aside—is “You want to give God a good laugh? Make plans.”) I do tend to ruminate on various possibilities. Since realizing my life is going to set out on a different course very soon (I’m going through “The Change”) I’ve Googled everything that sounds even remotely interesting. I’ve bookmarked pages for… The Peace Corp. The National Park Service (can’t you see me in a ranger uniform? My own or someone else’s? I don’t mind…) Bartending somewhere completely new (there’s a restaurant in Austin—the gayest of Texas towns--called Saba. Is that a sign?) Leading kayak tours in Key West. (Never been in a kayak, but I do row, which is much more challenging.) Doing the poor-relation tour of friends in warmer climes. My friends Mindy and Bradley both have farms in Kentucky/Tennessee. Maybe I could hang out there for a while and earn my stay by checking off items on the chore wheel like some passing hobo in the Depression. (An aside: I once had a conversation with a down-and-out fellow on Houston Street as we waited for the light to change. Somehow the derivation of the word “hobo” came up and he claimed the New York-to-Albany truck route started at that very corner and the Forgotten Men would wait there for a lift. We were at the corner of Houston and Bowery. Get it? HOuston/BOwery? HoBo? Don’t know if it’s true, but I like the thought.)

Anyway… I think you get the point. I’ve had lots of ideas for lots of different things in lots of different places throughout the country (and abroad.) But how to decide? I mean, until something falls into my lap (not out of the question, by any means) I do have to make some decision to start off this adventure.

And then inspiration struck: there’s a barn down the road a piece with a lot of old crap in the yard. Tires… a couple of boats… cars too numerous to mention… tractors… As I said, “crap.” And there among the refuse, gleaming like a beacon in the darkness, sits a little tiny silver-colored teardrop camper. I have no idea if it’s even remotely salvageable, but I’m going to do a little recon. and see if I can’t get the people to just give it to me for free in exchange for taking it off their hands. I know for a fact they’re trying to empty the yard of all that junk so I’d be doing them a favor. (Wink-wink.) I figure I'd get a hold of it, trick it out to the max (I’ve done it before to an old camper—it’s fun!) and at the sign of the first frost this fall, hitch that baby up to the Jeep and head south.

Talk about paring down! If everything I needed fit into a little tin box that I hauled behind my car I’d know my gut feeling to “simplify, simplify” was right on target. Not to mention I’d get to experience as many of those bookmarked web pages as I could cram into an extended road trip.

I must admit, since I hatched this hare-brained, cockamamie scheme it’s pretty much all I can think about. 90% of that may simply be the thought of how much fun it would be fix the thing up, but that’s in my DNA. I’ve already named it: “Li’l Squirt.” Cute, huh?

Of course, as I said, it may be a rusted piece of junk or the folks who own it may not want to give/sell it to me, but as the lady said, I can dream, can’t I?

Maybe I can avoid making plans after all.

Randomness: is it just me, or do other former porn stars regularly get fan mail from active-duty priests and other clergy members? One even came on the official church e-mail address. I’m not kidding, folks! It’s friggin’ weird!

Amazingly fast update...

By coincidence, just after I posted yesterday's entry I headed out to work and, lo and behold, the fellow who owns all that junk was on site. Long story short--it's mine! And for a price by which I couldn't come by a decent iPod. Woo-hoo! I may have to rethink the name, though. Apparently this type of camper is affectionately known as a "canned ham." I'm seeing a logo across the back with that name and the image of Scout in her ham costume from "To Kill A Mockingbird." Oh, yeah. That's definitely the way to go.


  1. I certainly hope those people are nice enough to part with their trailer, but sometimes people are weirdly attached to junk they certainly should be rid's a strange phenomenon I try to fight as often as possible.

    But I wish you luck!

  2. I'm intrigued (and a bit awed) by those people who don't have (or don't listen to) that voice in their heads that says, "...but I can't do that, it's crazy!" I'm happy to have you remind me through your lifes example that great opportunities don't present themselves, rather we open ourselves up to seeing them. Even when they're hidden in a pile of junk. I have no doubt that you will make whatever option work for you. And I hope you find great joy in your new adventure. Bon voyage!

    "Dare to be naive."
    Buckminster Fuller

  3. Looks Awesome Tom!!! and its sooooooo you! I love it! my only advice is to get a spare tire for it - we were stranded on the side of a NH highway for 6 hours last labor day weekend trying to find a tire for our boat trailer because it was some weird size - thankfully there was a dunkin donuts across the street! at least you wouldn't have 2 kids and a dog with you! you have to bring it by before you set out on your adventure so we can see the finished product! xoxoxo Amy

  4. I believe the original expression, translated from the Yiddish, is "Man plans and God laughs."

    You are a restless soul, arent' you? Happy trails and many pleasant adventures to you.

  5. Seriously? And you made a smartass comment about the new quilting frame?? You are welcome to park that sweet lookin' ride outside my house for a little while!