I told Mike that I wanted to leave at six AM. We packed our bags, got into the car, looked at the clock and the clock showed six. Yeah, bitches. Driving to Cross Lanes, WV was slower and faster than I thought as Eastern PA received quite a bit of snow but central PA had enough time to clear it allowing us to do 9 MPH above the speed limit as I tend to like. My biggest fear were deer, not because of limited visibility or difficulty breaking but because by the time we approached West Virginia I went from driving a car covered in salt to driving a salt lick with a gas motor.
Mike and I stopped for lunch at a very depressing Hardee’s with some of the fattest pigeons I’ve seen and service staff dropping awesome lines like “He can see the kids again once he shows he can stop drinking for two days”. Pigeon obesity seems to be defined by simply walking away when someone attempts to kick you rather than flying.
Once we picked up Chris, I had a novel experience: I sat in the back seat and didn’t drive. I tried such things as lying down, browsing the web on my laptop in a moving vehicle, and my personal favorite, riding with my leg out the window which was invigorating but very chilling:
I also got to take pictures of traffic control devices and other novel road phenomenon like “MacCorkle Drive”, and what looked like very angry red light:
We originally sighted these in WV, but they continued in other places.
I had built quite a nice fort out of people’s bags when we approached Cincinnati which was a traffic clusterf#ck that I later learned was unrelated to the snow. The roads were icy and hills required a bit of weaving to get up and I think stopping distances were measured in light-years. At one point, Mike approached an intersection slowly but going from 5 MPH to 0 proved difficult as the ABS went nuts. The car began to fishtail and Mike applied the e-brake, which was exactly the right thing to do but, as we were going 3 MPH, a more effective breaking method would have been to get out of the car, walk in front of it, and push in the other direction. Me screaming “NOOOOOOOOO” the whole time probably didn’t help and I’ve come to the conclusion that just as we have drivers’ ed, I need to take passengers’ ed. This course would probably ask you not to do other awesome things I do as a passenger like suddenly touch the driver’s neck and rest my hand on the shifter when I fall asleep.
The rest of the drive to Chicago was uneventful but we noticed that you could make out where you were in Chicago by determining what store was excessively prevalent whether it be barbershops, hair salons, butcher shops, laundromats, or Starbucks.