May 19, 2005

Grounded, once again, in Madison, taking a brief account of a long trip.

I need to readjust to being home, to my familiar ritual of sitting at the dining table paging through the NYT and sporadically blogging. Today, there are the four extra NYTs that accumulated while I was off on my quick trip to Ithaca and back.

I spent nearly 14 hours strapped in the driver's seat yesterday. We emerged from the little car only three times, each time for less than 15 minutes. Things I bought at the stops and then consumed in the car:
1. White cheddar popcorn.

2. A venti latte (Starbucks).

3. A Rice Krispies treat, Diet Pepsi, and peppermint gum.
On the last leg of the trip, driving up into Wisconsin, finally freed of all toll roads, keeping myself going on Pepsi and peppermint gum, I had to struggle with pouring rain, wisps of fog, and lots of truckers who saw fit to get right up to the taillights to express dissatisfaction with the little silver sports car that had eased off from the 65 mile an hour speed limit as it racked up the last 25 miles of that 837 mile day.

In the car, we listened to rock music on lots of different satellite radio channels. I concluded, for the thousandth time, that the 60s music is the best, as "Help Me, Rhonda" and "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" played, somewhere between Beloit and Janesville.

At one point, we listened to a spoken word CD, a lecture about philosophy and religion, and when the teacher used the phrase "the dark room of your mind," we turned it off and had a long conversation, answering my question: Do you see your own mind as dark? That is, when you picture your mind, do you see a black place inside your head? Much of the space between Cleveland and the holy city of Toledo was devoted to this inquiry, which transitioned from a discussion of the color and light of one's mind to the issue of where we saw our selves. Are we inside our heads, contiguous with our bodies, or occupying a place that extended beyond our bodies into the space immediately surrounding us?

Okay, back to the lecture. Enough of that. Let's listen to talk radio. No, no, let's go back to music. Let's play 20 questions.

Things I guessed, on just about the last question:
1. The Erie Railroad. (That last exam was Civil Procedure.)

2. Monica Lewinsky's dress. (Guessed just after guessing "Abraham Lincoln's hat" on question 19.)

20 comments:

chuck_b said...

And you never let the kid drive the whole time? Geez!

Ann Althouse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Richard Lawrence Cohen said...

1. Take a little protein once in a while, Ann. Pack some hard-boiled eggs.

2. I used the word "sporadically" in my morning's post too. Creepy!

3. The inside of my head is a bleeping universe loaded with galaxies, nebulae, black holes, wormholes, superstrings, countless life-forms of unfathomably many kinds (some of them intelligent), exploding supernovae, extinct dwarf stars, and who knows what else. And yours is too, I know.

4. The music production is far better now, though.

Ann Althouse said...

Richard: Then why did you use the expression "the inside of my head"?

Moral Turpitude said...

I think you should have purchased some CornNuts because that is the best driving food out there. When else would you buy CornNuts? Surely not on the average day. They can crack your teeth!

Ron said...

Richard: So you say your head is mostly...space? Do your memories emerge through whiteholes in said head? Do you really pay attention to those opinions formed in the Crab Nebula of your mind? If only you could have collected the golden thoughts formed in those mental supernovae...

Don't go all Jim Kirk now, dude!

Ron said...

Oh, yeah, and hard-boiled eggs? In a tiny TT interior? (say that fast three times! "tiny TT interior") Crank up the HEPA filter!

Ann: was Silvio a blast to drive on the big open highway?

Kevin said...

Tolls: What was the total damage?

I know the flatlanders now charge $1.50 for the honor of entering their state. I had family that paid over $23 in tolls when they drove from WI to DC.

Ann Althouse said...

Moral: Corn Nuts make me think of the movie "Heathers."

Kevin: I didn't count. Maybe $20 (each way).

Richard Lawrence Cohen said...

Ann, Ron: I won't grace your remarks by enabling Ann to rack up another comment.... Oh, blast!

Ann Althouse said...

Richard: There are so many ways to keep score in blogging in the blogging game, aren't there?

Muckish said...

When I read "the dark room of your mind," my immediate association was photography. I like the idea of a mind as a place where things are developed -- the risk of under or overexposure of ideas...

rafinlay said...

Do self-comments (autocommentary?) count in the score?

Ann Althouse said...

Maura: Interesting. I never made that association because of the inflection in the spoken word original.

Ann Althouse said...

Muckish: I meant Muckish. Can't think why I read that as "Maura." Something strange going on in the darkroom of my mind.

Ann Althouse said...

Rafinlay: I'm racking up quite a score here, am I not?

Ann Althouse said...

Richard: "Take a little protein once in a while, Ann. Pack some hard-boiled eggs."

Hard to pack food for the return trip, but in any event I had a very nice breakfast of scrambled eggs and sausage before leaving my hotel.

And there is plenty of protein in cheddar popcorn (lunch) and a venti latte (dinner). The third thing was a late evening snack where the idea was a final burst of energy.

It was all quite logical!

Ron said...

All these comments pinging around...it's kinda like a tennis game with volleys between 3,4,5 people...we all just move our heads from left to right as per each comment...

it's the only metaphor I could think of!

Dean said...

Fourteen hours and only three stops? I wouldn't have been able to walk. Not to mention the needs of my bladder.

amba said...

Yes! The mind is dark. If I close my eyes, my head has little to do with where it is. It actually extends out to the far reaches of the universe. When it's working well, some thoughts seem to come from very, very far away at the speed of light and arrive just in time.