Friday, May 25, 2007

May 25, 2007
Got into Des Moines at 10:40 last night. Virtually every flight on US Airways is oversold. It is both pathetic and stressful to be sitting at the gate (B-16) and hear each podium beg for volunteers to get paltry (misleading!) vouchers. The poor people who have to do this, flight after flight, all day long, it must be stressful on them as well. There has to be a more efficient way to handle no shows and this epidemic of overbooking.

Plus, once I got into my seat on the plane (8A), the kid in the seat in front of me kept farting—all the way to Des Moines. Really bad stinkers. I know the woman sitting next to me thought it was me. I bought her a beer ($5, correct change is appreciated). She works for Wells Fargo and was on her way home from San Francisco. Nice talk with her about her two kids, but I know she got home and told her husband, "Man this cowboy kept ripping these stink bombs while he was sketching! I thought I was going to die!"

Enterprise was out of cars when I got to their window and they handed me off to Budget at the next counter. So I got a full-sized, red Impala. Had Mapquest directions to my cousins's condo in West Des Moines. Got pulled over by an Iowa Highway Patrolman on Army Post Road. "We got a complaint from Brenda at Wells Fargo. Would you step out of the car, sir. I need to check your pants."

Not really.

Got to the condo, without incident, at 11:30 P.M. (9:30 our time). Watched a bit of Conan O'Brien. Someone tell him to quit moving around so nervously during his monologue. He looks like he's crapped his pants (End of scatalogical comments—for this paragraph).

Woke up at eight this morning, got dressed and drove up to Living History Farms and ate a big, hearty Iowa breakfast at the Machine Shed. Had the Country Market Skillet ($6.49 plus coffee $1.49, and a T-shirt $12=$21.39 includes tip).

Oh, Say Can You See?
"Drat, I can't read the text on that Honkeytonk Sue t-shirt!"
—Emma Bull

It's says: "If a man has to brag, he'll be the first to sag." it seemed so edgy and funny in the early eighties when I wrote it, but I kind of cringe now. Kathy blacked out the type on her shirt because everyone at exercise class would come up to her and say, "Oh, that's an interestng shirt, what does it sayyyyyYuck!"

"Jana Bommersbach's neat item regarding the phony photo sparked this thought, for the millions of your subscribers that are hooked on top ten lists (As in: Top Ten Worst John Wayne Movies. Sorry. Not sure where that came from. May God strike me dead. Besides, how do we limit ourselves to ten?) How's about a top ten fake Old West photos? Each one autopsied by an expert. E.g., the Hunter's Hot Springs portrait that Jason Leaf dissected. The diaphanous Josie Earp image, which is the subject of a new book by, I forget. Each grizzled overworked obsessive corner of Old West history —Billy, Jesse, etc.— must have an iconic fake photo. Get them all together. Drive garlic-rubbed spikes through each and every one of them."
—Dan Buck

Driving down to Winterset, Iowa this morning to check in with the girls at the John Wayne Birthplace Museum, and pick up 100 True West magazines for tonight's bash at the Stoney Creek Inn (in Des Moines). Going to put mags on all the seats and circulate, doing the missionary work for the magazine. I made a note to myself this morning at breakfast: "True West will be successful when I get it into the hands of the right people." And that's why I'm here, braving bad farts to bring the truth about the Old West to the heartland.

" Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought; our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks."
—Samuel Johnson, who could've added that those sparks can lead to bad gas. . .

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