You grew up on the east coast, spent 7 years on the west coast, then moved back to the east coast for 5 years. It's such a special thing that now you get to experience what's in between.
I spent 72 hours slinging Tito’s at a liquor store on the jersey shore ... oddly I feel it was just as satisfying
Haha. Here and there I noticed plenty of people in high-season work mode. Park rangers, for example, trying to accommodate the crowds. I liked being on the vacationer side of the equation, but a few times I felt like jumping across the snack bar or whatever to ring up some customers and speed things up. That jam, when it’s popping, is always a blast.
So you have named your camper "Sputnick".... obvously for the first satallite ever launched into space, a searcher of the unknown, a scientific marvel, circling the earth to gather information and relay back to the earthlings. An interesting metaphor for your travels. However, there is another less romantic feeling of Sputnick when it was launched, instead of it being heralded as the amazing scientific marvel that it was, certian people with nefarious agendas framed it as a huge Russian threat, a weapon constantly circling above us. It caused panic and fear in some. President Kennedy actually committed to putting the first human on the moon because of his desire to outdue Russias Sputnick program. It could be said that Sputnick, was the beginning of a completely different mindset for all developed nations. I think many people are going to embrace your mission, will want to be involved in this reading revouloution. But be ready for the nay-sayers, those who say it is not possible. Some who actually fear change. I believe in ReadUp and it tilting the insanity into a more moderate and livable lifestyle, of reading and pondering, and actually thinking. We as a society need to slow the heck down and really read stuff to absorb it, enough of the headline scanning and half-reading. OK, take your sputnick and show us the way! Ciao.
AMAZING comment! So many nails hitting so many heads, Jim! I embrace the Russian flavor. And, yes, it's an attention grabber, that's for sure. My Sputnik, just like the space probe, is the kind of thing that you see and point at and say "Oooohhh!!" And yes, Sputnik puts people on edge a little bit, that's for sure. Gotta keep people on their toes! Shake the cages!
But I think my favorite thing about the name "Sputnik" is that it's so retro, so analog, borderline janky. Just like a big cluster of twisted metal that somehow keeps going forward but might explode at any moment. Free-flying! And if that happens, it's not a tragedy as much as a fun factoid, a historical footnote.
I also learned on wikipedia that disposal of the real Sputnik was a lengthy process of "orbital decay." Not to be too morbid, but at the end of the day, aren't we all just undergoing a giant process of orbital decay?
As soon as I find a book on Sputnik (I'm not actively searching for one, more like waiting for the book to find me!) I'm definitely going to read it. Such a fascinating topic.
Hey Jim, love your little bit of history thrown in and it’s a great analogy!
I SO appreciate the sharing of your adventures Bill. It’s the richness of the details that are captivating, that pull me along right with you at the Fowlerville Parade or hanging with the 7 kids as you collect your duck eggs for your morning breakfast. I think this sums up one of the important aspects of your trip: “Main Street isn’t a metaphor. When they start looking the same, I know I’m not paying close enough attention. That’s when it’s time to slow down even more.” YES, paying attention and slowing down - all the wonderful affects that reading can influence and help to retrain our scattered selves. When you have the time, like with the family of 7 kids, do you talk to them about why you are traveling across country - your quest? I’m so interested in how people feel across America about reading, about the affects of technology. You are getting an up close and personal account and that’s more valid than what one “hears” or reads. And, what do duck eggs taste like? When you were not being Kerouac, what book did you curl up with? “It’s funny how even when you have no idea where you want to go, the fork keeps coming.” Keep the stories coming. We are with you as a community. And I’m confidant in it’s ability to grow.