Road Trip Day 2: Spontaneity is the Spice of Life

Who would’ve thought that we’d find the best Mexican food since leaving Phoenix in a converted Long John Silver’s in Gillette, Wyoming?

It’s true. Last night we tried a place called Los Compadres (no idea if there’s any relation to the Phoenix chain), and except for cole slaw being substituted for the usual shredded lettuce, it had the Arizona Mexican food taste we’ve been missing all these months.

Today’s goal (and in fact, the whole reason for this trip) was Devil’s Tower.

Very impressive, even if we didn’t have any Close Encounters of the Third—or any other—Kind.

The boulders at the base of the tower are huge:

This is a wood ladder built in the 1890s:

And here is some crazy guy climbing the tower. He was about 2/3 of the way up:

Neither one of us was paying attention to the other when we got dressed this morning. It was only after we were about a half hour from the hotel that we realized we were all matchy-matchy. One of those couples. Ugh.

The baby is due any day now…

This picture gives you a better idea of how incredibly large the boulders are at the base of the tower. I was surprised—and a little disappointed—to learn that none of the boulders (or any of the columns) have fallen for the entire time the tower has been a national park (a little over a hundred years). Seeing one of those columns shear loose would be awesome:

And what would a road trip be without some sneaky pics?

It was around noon when we finished up hiking around the base of the Tower and Ben asked, “Want to go to Mt. Rushmore?”

We checked the travel time (about two hours), and since neither of us had ever been there, we thought, why not?

Not as impressive as Devil’s Tower (both of us were expecting it to be a lot bigger), but still worth the effort to get there.

I’ve also learned (somewhat belatedly) that my fancy-schmancy DSLR takes the best pictures when I set it on Auto or Programmed and don’t mess with it…

Road Trip!

Ben has this week off for spring break, and I’ve finally accumulated enough PTO to allow a couple days away from the madness that has become my workplace (more on that some other time). So what were we going to do with this newfound freedom from responsibility?

Road Trip!

But where?  Four days is not enough time to go back to Phoenix, or even to St. Louis—a destination we’ve had our eye on since I passed through a few years ago on my way to bury my mom’s ashes in Wisconsin.

One place I’ve wanted to see in person since the release of Close Encounters of the Third Kind was Devil’s Tower, Wyoming. With all the years I lived in Phoenix or the Bay Area, it was always too far to justify the time and expense. Even when I went to Yellowstone back in 2007, visiting would’ve been a stretch since it was on the opposite side of the state.

But lo and behold, it was only about a six hour drive from Denver!

Day One: Where the Buffalo Roam

My initial impressions of the part of Wyoming we passed through? Lots and lots of rolling hills covered in light yellow grass and bovines of one type or another. Ben spent a lot of the drive today napping; he didn’t miss much.

One highlight however were the bright red roads in certain areas. Ben asked if they were paved with baby’s blood, and I responded, “Well, Dick Cheney is from here…”

Maintenance of this section of highway proudly sponsored by the Church of Satan.

Tomorrow should be much more interesting.

"Christians are a Persecuted Minority in This Country"

Really?

Persecuted?

Minority?!?

I was greeted by this blaring from a radio in a parked SUV when I arrived at work today. I didn’t see the owner, but I have a pretty good idea of who it was based on the ratio of bible-verses vs. work related items posted in certain cubes around the office.

Minority?!? Seriously?

I am so tired of this bullshit, and the critically misinformed, low-information voters who lap it up.

Movie Review

Ben and I went to see The Hunger Games today.

Disclaimer: I have never read the book(s).

Overall I thought it was a good film, but the underlying story was terribly depressing. It was one of the most dystopian futures I’ve encountered in fiction, and I have no desire whatsoever to ever live in a world like that. I mean, what kind of society sacrifices its children…for entertainment?

The disparity between the haves and the have-nots seemed to spring directly from a Republican wet dream.

Josh Hutcherson does not look good as a blonde.

Thankfully it wasn’t as graphically violent as it could’ve been.  Guess they need to keep that rating so they can actually get their target audience into the theater.

A film based on the second book of the trilogy is due for release in November of next year.

 

Quote of the Day

“You know that both Microsoft and Apple support marriage equality, right? So exactly what are you going to be typing your stupid little screeds on? I mean, I know you’ve got time on your hands, what with all the hungry fed and the sick healed and whatnot (Oh, wait, they’re not?), so maybe you could go all the way back to the Bronze Age. And stay there, you pathetic, joyless, superstitious, self-righteous, tax-evading busybodies. Me, I’m going to Starbucks, where I intend to buy a Venti, tip the staff outrageously, and send a note to management complimenting them on not caving to hateful perverts that get off on other people’s sex lives.”Doug Barr

Oh, smack!

So Maggie Gallagher, Brian Brownshirt and NOM are stomping their little cloven hooves and calling for a boycott because after ranting at Starbucks’ annual shareholders’ meeting the other day about the company supporting marriage equality, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz basically told them to go fuck themselves.

As Doug pointed out in the quote above, if NOM (and every other hate organization) were serious about boycotting companies (and not just whoring themselves for attention) they would close their laptops, throw them in the trash, and go back to communicating via stone tablets and smoke signals. But of course that will never happen. It’s the same type of cognitive dissonance that allows them to use quotes from Leviticus to condemn gays, but conveniently ignore those regarding stoning adulterers, disobedient children and non-virgins who marry, eating shellfish and wearing clothing made of two different kinds of fibers. Because you know, those are just silly!

It’s a well-known fact that Ben and I spend way too much money at Starbucks. But we’re happy to know that hard-earned money is going to a company that stands behind all relationships, not just the ones receiving a stamp of approval from bronze age right wing religious lunatics.

There’s a “Dump Starbucks” website (I won’t to link to it) out there that now claims to have gotten 6053 pledges from folks saying they won’t set foot in Starbucks again. Wow! SIX THOUSAND FIFTY THREE.  That amounts to 0.00002% of the US population.

And Starbucks’ stock actually went up yesterday after the launch of the boycott.  Well done, NOM. Please continue your little tantrum.

Whenever I think of NOM and all the other haters out there, I envision an old man standing on a beach, shaking his fist at the approaching tidal wave of equality that is rapidly approaching.  Too stupid or stubborn to leave the beach, he will be dashed to bits as the waters rush onshore.