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Missouri

Stylish Dead Folks

Hey Team,

Between twitter making me lazy and being stuck in a hearse for a week (Who would have ever thought I’d have the opportunity to say that and mean it?) there hasn’t been much new info up here in the last few days. But SO much has happened and so much is in the process of happening that I don’t anticipate running out of things to say anytime soon (much to everyone I meet in person’s dismay).

Here’s the scoop on the hearse and tomorrow I’ll fill you folks in on yesterday’s dirt bike race!

Thanks to a ride down to Seymour, IN with my Indianapolis couch surfing host, Karla, this past Tuesday I was able to pick up the classiest Dead People Mobile I had ever seen. If dead people wanted to ride in style circa 1984 then the only real option would be this Cadillac Hearse…anything else would be uncivilized. (Not to give you the wrong impression: despite all the strange questions I got while driving not one person asked for fancy mustard.)

There was no real rush to deliver the car to San Francisco from “Team Do or Die” (the endurance racing team that paid for the gas for me to More >

The Wonderful World of Greyhound

Hey Team,

I stepped up into the doorway resigned to the upcoming fifty-three hour marathon only to be slapped in the face by a wall of stale air. A quick look around shows only one empty seat; not leaving me the usual option of scouring the bus for the least stained place to plant myself. It’s the front seat. Not a terrible spot. At least not as compared to all of the other terrible spots. Notable drawbacks: No reading light, less leg room (but since the leg room is minimal anyway I go in expecting discomfort), and a little old lady who thinks she can “save me” by convincing me I should settle down and get married, “maybe have a few kids.”

I fold myself into a good book silently throwing out all the social cues I can muster to drive the point home that I don’t want to be having this conversation. The next forty-five minutes only bring me two pages closer to the climax. She needs no prompting to ask the next question and a never-ending string of one-word answers are nothing in the face of her persistence.

“Were you married once already?”

“No.”

“Is there a girl back home?”

“No.”

I think she’s More >

Thank You

Hey Team,

Today is the 365th day of Amtrekker. (Although officially tomorrow is the first anniversary…wacky leap year.) It’s hard to believe I’m still out on the road after all this time. I’m not sure which PART is hard to believe. Is it more of a surprise that it has taken me this long to accomplish my goals or that I’ve actually managed to afford being homeless and unemployed this long?

Regardless, I know I couldn’t be doing this without help and it’s amazing how many people have come together to make Amtrekker happen. Whether it be a small donation or the opportunity to hang glide or drive a racecar or even just being there to follow along and spread the word it’s amazing how much you have all done for me in the last year. I feel like, quite literally, I’m the smallest piece of the puzzle here and I’m just glad that I have the ability to share my adventures with all of you in turn.

So, although tomorrow is the “big day” and this weekend will be the celebratory trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon I can’t help but think of this as an important day and get More >

“Food” Stops

Hey Team,

It’s no secret that Greyhound is a long boring ride no matter where you’re going. (And mysteriously, I’m relatively sure, every ride takes about twenty-four hours.) But the problem I ran into yesterday was pretty unique and I’m not sure how much of it Greyhound was to blame for but they always make a handy scapegoat so they’re going to get a healthy dose of the blame too.

Since all of the rides are twenty-four hours long it becomes necessary to make food stops along the way occasionally to prevent mutiny. (Or is that just a boat thing? Can you have a bus mutiny? Butiny?) The rest stop couldn’t have come one second sooner yesterday. In true Amtrekker fashion I had gotten distracted by one thing or another all day and kept forgetting to eat.

Now it was coming up on 8pm and I was getting desperate for food. The bus driver pulls into a large parking lot and wakes me up from an uncomfortable half-sleep with the PA.

“Okay, folks. Time for a food stop. You only have fifteen minutes so don’t straggle.”

Bleary eyed, I stumbled out the bus door to the less than welcome sight of the Golden More >

TASTHIB – City Museum – St. Louis, MO [podcast]

Hey Team,

On my last day in St. Louis I finally took everyone’s advice and checked out the City Museum, a magical land of wonder and recycled architecture.

Seriously guys, this place rocked. It’s made completely out of recycled products. People tear down a building or are looking to get rid of their private jet and these guys say, “Do you mind if we just turn that into something awesome instead of letting you throw it into the trash?”

Thanks to everyone that recommended that place. It was, in a word…Incredible. I doubt this podcast could ever do it justice. But here goes nothing.

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And here’s that youtube link!

I’m done.

Brett.

If you like the podcasts then don’t be scared of that donate button!

Thanks!

More >

“Hey Kettle You’re Looking Kinda…Black”

Hey Team,

I’ve never made any attempt at keeping secret the fact that Greyhound is my least favorite method of travel. There are some pretty unsavory characters rolling around those terminals.

When I was traveling to St. Louis I had the privilege of sharing the bus with an older man with a bushy white beard, a head just a little too small for his body and a persistent hacking cough. All in all, nothing out of the ordinary there.

BUT, as I was standing in line with the rest of the dregs of humanity today, getting ready to leave St. Louis (bound for Atlanta by way of Nashville), I look to my right and what should I see? A small old man with a bushy white beard, a head just a little too small for his body and a persistent hacking cough wearing the exact same clothes he was wearing three days ago! So naturally, I instantly looked down upon him as a dirty slob with no direction in life.

It was shortly after that when I realized I’d just called the kettle out for wearing a Mickey Mouse jacket.

I better go change my clothes.

I’m done.

Brett.

I know what would make you feel better!

Thanks!

More >

Walk It Off

Hey Team,

I’ve recently discovered two very interesting and telling facts about the people living in this great country of ours.

1. NO ONE’S concept of “walking distance” is the same as mine.

And

2. NO ONE has any concept of distance. Period.

I explored the better part of St. Louis by foot today and for the most part it was great. There’s A LOT to look at here.

Nothing I can really cross off the list besides the geocaching but the architecture is AWESOME (yeah, I’m kind of a geek for design).

However, eventually came the time when I realized I had to find a bank or I was going to go hungry tonight. Sadly, it was already pretty late in the day. (I wish the following exchange were an isolated incident but sadly only the places and faces change.)

“Sorry we’re closed.”

“Is there another Bank of America nearby?”

“Not within walking distance.”

“How far is it?”

“You can’t walk there.”

“About how far is it?”

“Pretty far.”

“Pretty far as in, it’s in Nashville…or pretty far as in, I should take a bus.”

“*sigh* Jenn, how far away is the Jefferson and Gravois branch?”

“Two miles.”

“It’s two miles.” This she said with a tone that added, “SEE. Idiot. You can’t walk two miles. More >

I HATE

Hey Team,

I’m sure there are a few of you out there that already know this but I don’t think I’ve ever written about it so most of you are probably in the dark. There are precious few things in this life that I would file under the category of “Things Brett Hates.” All in all I’m a pretty easygoing guy; I stay up beat. BUT the things that ARE on my list are things I HATE with a loathing red-hot passion.

Let me take a step back. Yesterday was a GREAT day. Period. Way up there on the list of great days even. I got to go to the diggnation live show.

I met some really interesting people and I’m staying with a great couchsurfing host in a very interesting city. There. Consider that a disclaimer.

Now. There are only four items on my list of things I hate. That means that only four things that I have come across on a regular basis in my short life are so putrid, so utterly intolerable, so loathsome that I have a difficult time even thinking about them. And it’s a testament to what a great day yesterday was to be able to STILL More >


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