5/21/98 10:45PM (according to the laptop)
109614 miles

we just left red lion. we're starting with a new windshield, struts, shocks, and a full tank of gas.

5/22/98 6:15 AM (laptop EST)
110097 miles (traveled 483 miles)

we're now in the western side of ohio, about 40 miles from indiana. rest stops in ohio suck. locked glasses in car, bought wrong snapple.
ryan's addendum:trying not to think

5/22/1998 11:19PM CST
110418 miles (logged: 804)

just entered wisconsin. mcdonalds food in illinois sucks. fries not salty, crowded as hell, matt found real onion in sandwich. will notify FDA. illinois is flat and boring. indiana is flat and boring. car is trashed already. cracker barrel sucks.
ryan's addendum:none at this time, except complaining about heat
matt's addendum:ryan is comatose
11:25 addendum:due to matt's degree in advanced hyperbolic topology and using excerpts from gleik's book on chaos the hyperdrive (in layman's terms: cruise control) was restored to full functionality. possible breakage blame pointed to ryan sanders. chaos technique applied: 17 PSI applied to switch at specific iterations aided by light vulgarity.

5/22/98 4:19PM CST
110691 (1077 total miles logged)

we just got lost. somehow 16W turned into 52N. don't ask. minnesota is very scenic but boring otherwise. if it weren't for ryans driving I'd be asleep by now. typical midwestern towns. if this trip were longer than four days, we'd probably stay and see some sights. gentleman with funny accent (it seems to be a disease here) replaced a fuse for us. what that fixed: tachometer, dome light, side mirrors, interior lights, and settings 1 and 2 on the environment control system.
ryan's addendum:wants to break 114 on highway.
matt's addendum:passed out in back seat, doesn't respond to excessive speeds
4:47 PM addendum:we're back on route 90

5/22/98 7:29PM CST
110932 (1318 miles logged) 60.59

rapidly approaching mountain time zone. we just covered 104 miles from the mcdonalds in fairmont, MN to the south dakota state line in about one hour. several attractive girls in minnesota although the were a bit on the young side. matt is reading a book by Umberto Eco, ryan is driving, I am logging. matt and I recently engaged in a conversation about microsoft's inability to conform to a standard of any kind. bastards.
ryan's addendum:no comments, concentrating on keeping car on road
matt's addendum:blacktop roads are better than concrete. south dakota doesn't suck as bad as other states
9:14PM addendum:dashboard lights are no longer funcational. cd player still works
9:18PM addendum:cd player no longer functional
9:32PM addendum:cd player once again functional

5/22/98 9:23PM MST
111152 (1538 total miles logged)

just passed into Mountain Time Zone. I'm still me. stopped to get gas, saw three cute girls and they all said hi. don't think it's because they think I'm cute but because that's the way people around here are. crossed missouri river, took multiple pictures. rained like hell for about an hour, dry now. still trying to recover from the two hour gain.
ryan's addendum:pants wet - possible urination difficulties; trash pile growing
matt's addendum:none

5/23/98 6:45AM MST
111693 (2079 total miles logged)

note - this is a matt-style log, so don't expect structure. expect typos, since steve keps driving us off the road. things get a bit bumpy when he does that, since we're in the middle of wyoming, and it's kind of hilly. you know, with the rockies and all. we failed at (note another near death experience - two deer. I got a nice taste of the back of the front seat as I hurled my face into the headrest.) finding the geographical center of the us - I don't think it moved, but they barred the gate, so we didn't get near it. we also failed at mount rushmore - no one had it all lit up for us like we had hoped. so we drove around in some construction zone in the rain, hoping we wouldn't run into a ranger. chances were slim anyway, since it was some stupid hour, and the only person we could find was some guy waxing a floor inside. so, after standing in the cold rain for a while trying to find a mountain in the fog using a flashlight that runs on 2 AA batteries, we got the bright idea to go find the center of the us. well, as I mentioned above, (I'd also like to mention that I hate the autocapitalization of the letter i. makes it look like I'm only bothering to capitalize when I'm talking about myself.) we didn't fare too well with that, although it was worth it to watch steve try to run back into a moving car as he was going to the bathroom. so, wyoming was declared to be the next target, so here we are, randomly drifting off the road and avoiding deer. for some reason, we just did a uturn, but I'm not sure why. I think there's a reason we usually have steve asleep in the back seat and not behind the wheel. Une heure apres la mort, notre me vanouie, se ra ce qu'elle estoit une heure avant la vie... ok, normal log stuff: car status: screwed. this is probably going to be worse than the florida trip. ok, that's enough categorical info. bye!
ryan's addendum:where are the fucking mechanics
matt's addendum:yes
cheezits = jesus

5/23/98 12:39PM
111811 (2197 total miles logged)

after much searching thru two towns, we finally got the oil changed. first place we stopped at in ranchester told us that the mechanic had the weekend off. the next stop was in sheradin where the whole shop had memorial day weekend off. the second place in sheradin told us that someone else was first and that would take at least an hour. the third place (same town) was a toyota dealer who told us that the mechanics weren't in yet. than napa fixed the problem for us at a reasonable cost. then I met a cute girl at walmart where I bought a toothbrush and water. but she got quiet really quick when I told her I was from pa. in dayton, a woman waved to ryan before he could beep the horn. then we started driving with hopes of being in yellowstone by noon. well, then we found the rocky mountains. we've each taken about 25 pictures and spent about two hours wandering about the mountains. filled in several people with info about our trip. very interesting, I imagine.

5/23/98 8:50PM MST
111998 (2384 miles logged)

we're now at the old faithful inn in yellowstone park. we do not belong here. when we arrived this place was teeming with people. we walked into the inn and up to the registration desk where we were helped by jag. jag expressed a negatory attitude when we asked for a room. he looked it up and discovered that despite the fact that all rooms were booked, there was one for us. so while we were paying, a woman next to us asked a clerk when their room would be ready. we are good. we are very good. this place looks like the hotel in the shining. so we checked in, took showers, shaved, and walked around the geysers for awhile. now we are headed to the lodge bar to pick up chics.
ryan's addendum:ppppphhhhhhwwwweeeeeeeffffflllllltttt
matt's addendum:matt stinks

5/24/98 1:40PM
112107 (2493 miles logged)

okay, this has been a very interesting trip. there weren't any chicks at the bar. I downed three mudslides, a mud pot, and a nutty irishman in an hour and ryan had a nutty irishman and a margarita. struck up a conversation with the bartender. dumb-ass matt read for two hours and fell asleep around 10:30. wimp! later, ryan and I went to the fireplace, sat down, and engaged in a 4 hour conversation with a dental hygenist and some guy named jon. feeling really good and realizing that I'll never see these people ever again, I started bullshitting. and man did I bullshit. ryan had a hard time keeping a straight face. all I did was tell them exactly what the wanted to hear and by the end I had the woman convinced the I was the guy she wanted her daughter to marry. and the guy thought ryan and I were the greatest people in the world. I convinced the guy that my grandpa had an astrolabe. I have no idea what an astrolabe is. so about 2:15 ryan and I wandered off to the room to sleep. this morning matt and I lifted up the mattress to throw ryan onto the floor. on the way down ryan stuck out his knee and knocked a big ol hole in the wall. the old faithful inn does not know about it yet. so we left, and on the way to this point we almost ran out of gas. out here it's about 60 miles between gas stations.

the time is now steve has both. both what, we don't have a friggin' clue, but he's got them. just sat up in the back seat and started talking about them. wouldn't shut the hell up. we figure he's pretty unstable, so we locked him in the back. we just stopped for gas, somewhere in indiana, and a guy with a chainsaw invited us somewhere down the road. free beer was involved, but we declined. a rare showing of intelligence, on our part. anyway - here's the latest. we busted ass out of wyoming yesterday. took about 8 hours to get from yellowstone to nebraska. precisely what I said it would take the night before, but did they listen? nooo...it'll only take 5 hours max. so they yell at me for going to bed early. but they weren't too unhappy as they slept in the car, since I was the only one with any energy. we let steve drive for about 45 minutes this morning. he sat in the back seat for an entire day, doing nothing, while ryan and I swapped off, and when we get tired, he takes the wheel. within 40 miles, he's driving off the road, in the rain. so, I take over, since I can't sleep in the back with the car drifting in the gravel anyway, and within 6minutes, there's a red flashing light in the rear window, as a cop pulls me over for doing 81 in a 65 (note - the duck will be severely reprimanded for this, since it was his duty to watch for cops). he was cool about it, and I was too, mainly because I was too tired to really realize what the hell was going on. between the hole in the wall at yellowstone, a 132 dollar ticket, and ryan's 2mpg car, this is getting expensive. oh well.

oh, and steve got the shit scared out of him. we were in wyoming somewhere, and he looked up as a pigeon tried to pull a sharp turn out of the way. I think it was level with his forehead as it bounced off the windshield. right now he's talking about having a fan in his pants. I hope he's talking about the electrical kind. we stopped by in colorado for a couple minutes last night - fairly uneventful, except for that now we know what kind of ugly gretting sign colorado uses at it's borders. some pinkish purple and a yellow, with some other bad color. they really should have stuck with the license plate colors - white and green. it suits the state much better. the rest of the night was fairly uneventful; we just stopped every 35 miles or so across nebraska to fill up the tank. it went by fairly quickly, considering the fact that the state is 500 miles wide. that may have had something to do with the fact that we were averaging 97 miles an hour.

I don't see this logged above, so here's the other instance of where we let steve drive - he fell asleep and drifted off the road in wyoming, then 3 miles later narrowly avoided smacking two deer. we took him out of the driver seat shortly after that. it's kind of entertaining - I think that's why we let him drive. we let him sit there and pretend to drive for a while, cheat death a couple times, and then return him to the back seat so he can sleep.

while I'm at it, here's a breakdown of the eletrical status of the car. I believe this all stems from the cd player. it's attempting a hostile takeover of the rest of the electrical systems of the car. (it also runs at about 400 degrees celsius.) here's the sequence of events thus far:

  1. cruise control dies. we restore it. the cd player is angered, and shuts down temporarily.
  2. the interior lights were dead (and mirrors), but we replaced the fuse in minnesota. again, the cd player sees that we are reapairing things, so it takes out the dash lights. we are left with the milage meter, and a flashlight to gauge speed. the flashlight is used very little.
  3. the cd player, now generally surly, starts rejecting cds left and right, and also blows out the left rear brake light. this is also the turn signal, which the officer duly noted this morning.
Eventually, I think the cd player, if not reprimanded, will take over the main battery. it's only a matter of time.....
New State Motto's
Alternate applicable to all states:It beats the shit out of PA
Ohio:home of the shitty rest stop
Wyoming:you can check out but you can never leave
Nebraska:get used to the smell
Iowa:land of picky cops
South Dakota:

5/25/98 8:57PM
114187 (4573 miles logged)
car just died. 20 miles from home. did someone say bitter irony? fuck eet! right now we're about a half mile off the turnpike, 20 miles from home. we're now on the phone with AAA. we're going to turn the laptop off now in order to conserve battery power. more later. 9:30 post-breakdown addendum: AAA is sending up a tow truck. also called my dad so he's going to come up and take matt and possibly me home while the tow truck guy takes ryan back. actually we're about 40 miles from home. so right now, it's 9:30PM on memorial day and we're standing along 83 waiting for the tow truck. I'm standing beside the car typing this in. we think it's just a lack of oil problem. but maybe not. otherwise, nothing interesting happened since the last log. it's been a fun trip and I found out that the entire population of the world could fit into 186 square miles.