A Different Kind Of Travelogue

So, I’ve started reading Carsick, by John Waters (yes, the writer and director of Pink Flamingos). I’m loving it, so far. It’s unlike any travelogue I’ve ever read. (It’s John Waters, what should I expect?)

Carsick is the true story of a road trip 66-year-old John Waters took in 2012. He hitchhiked along Interstate 70, from Baltimore to San Francisco. In the prologue, he writes about his fears and expectations about the adventure, his staff’s various reactions to the idea, and reminds us that John Steinbeck invented parts of the supposedly non-fiction Travels With Charley.

Then the book is divided into three sections: The best way it could have happened, the worst way it could have happened, and how it really happened.

I’m in the fifth “good ride” of the first section. I imagine that anyone who skips the prologue will be confused, or skeptical, or both.

Meanwhile, Phillip and I watched the 14th and final episode of Max Headroom tonight. I now know that I had remembered most of it incorrectly. I also remain a fan of the show. I will admit, however, that the show could have done without its second season.

The second and third episodes of the second season stunk. It’s like the writers were trying too hard to freshen up the show, or something – the edgier apocalyptic scenery was dropped, and it focused a bit too much on the personal lives of the characters. Then the season became better, and grittier – but it basically replayed the idea of television controlling people’s thoughts. Episode 12 (“Neurostim”) introduced the idea that if advertisers were able to reach consumers directly, there would be no need for network television. (How did this show get on the air?) Episode 13 (“Lessons”) was my favorite episode of the season, with the idea of making education profitable, in order to keep the poor uneducated and susceptible. Then the season, and the show, ended with a clunker – a feel-good episode with an even more unbelievable plot than usual.

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