Tuesday, January 18, 2011

We Amuse Ourselves

For those of you who wonder what we do while we're driving: We Amuse Ourselves. Mr. Trucker, in particular, cracks himself up on a regular basis. He has some new high-tech thingies on his Smart Phone, and a curlicue cord thingy which he plugs into the truck radio. This allows him to find streaming audio (when I first heard it, I thought they were saying "screaming audio") of different radio stations from all over the entire world. Sometimes we listen to Celtic music on an actual Irish radio station in Dublin. The other day, we listened to Frookie (actually FRUK--Folk Radio U.K.). While scrolling through the stations, Mr. T discovered one called "Pagan Pentogram Radio", which we both agreed we wouldn't care to listen to. But it caused us to reflect on other unique, one-of-a-kind radio stations we might create.

That's how we came up with "All Triangle Radio". Our byline would be "All Triangle, All The Time", and it would feature only music played on the triangle. We would interview triangle composers, legendary triangle players, and experts on triangle music and the history of the instrument. We'd air discussions on the various merits of differently sized triangles, using different materials to effect different sounds, and occasionally some obscure triangle types, such as "The Lumberjack Cookhouse Triangle", used to call the men to dinner, etc...

Yesterday we were listening to "Pandora" radio, which if you've never heard of it, is a really cool website where you can choose an artist and create a station based on that artist, and Pandora will play songs by that artist and other similar sounding ones and you can give thumbs up or thumbs down to each selection. So we were listening to the "Jim Croce" station, and Don McLean's "American Pie" came on. Of course I had to sing along, and I'm still amazed that I still know all the words to this 8 minute song after so many years. This then prompted a discussion, between Mr. Trucker and myself, as to the words of the song and what they might mean. Mr. Trucker reminded me that the song was based on the deaths of Buddy Holly, Richie Valens, and the Big Bopper. I then told Mr. Trucker that Carly Simon had written "You're So Vain" about Don McLean, which Mr. Trucker begged to differ with me on, stating that she had written it about Warren Beatty. We then got into a heated argument on the subject, so Mr. Trucker, who is always anxious to prove himself right in any disagreement, got on the internet (we were parked in a truckstop at the time, so don't go getting all worked up about him driving and computing at the same time) to find out the true answer.

First he found information about the words to "American Pie" and that got pretty complex and metaphysical. You can find all sorts of different theories as to the meanings. But apparently I was WRONG about Carly Simon's "You're So Vain", even though I KNOW I had heard or been told repeatedly that it was about Don McLean. There was nothing on the internet to back this theory up. There was, however, plenty of information to back up Mr. Trucker's assertions that it was perhaps Warren Beatty. There was also a lot of conflicting information on the identity of the person or persons Ms. Simon may have had in mind when penning her song, although most of the documentation seems to support the theory that she was actually thinking of three different men. But what REALLY floored us was the fact that allegedly in 2003, Dick Ebersol, an NBC executive, bid $50,000 in a charity auction to win the right to a private performance by Carly Simon, at which she supposedly revealed the name(s) of the person(s) the song was about, as long as Mr. Ebersol signed a confidentiality agreement that he would never publicly disclose the information. Can you even believe it?

Anyway, it just goes to show you that the internet is a wonderful tool for research purposes (and for settling arguments) and also now you know what we do with our time.

Lately we have also been watching movies on our laptop in the evenings. That is because WalMart has that big bin of $5.00 movies in the back of the store (you know the bin I'm talking about: the one where you practically have to dive into the bin head-first to find all the good movies).  Last week we bought "A River Runs Through It", mainly because I remembered vaguely hearing that it was critically acclaimed, or won some awards or something (and because it stars Brad Pitt). We tried to watch it the night we bought it, but it was defective and after running just long enough to pique our interest, it went all Kerplooey on us. We exchanged it a few days later, and watched it night before last. Apparently the whole fly fishing metaphor thing must have a certain appeal to MEN, because I found it incredibly boring. I kept thinking: "okay, this is where he drowns in the river", or "they're going to find a dead body now", or "this must be the part where the train hits them in the tunnel", but none of that stuff ever happened. It was just a kind of nice, slow-moving story about a family and fly fishing (spoiler alert: it did have a tragic ending, but they didn't show anything). It's really kind of a sad reflection on how desensitized we've become to suspense, violence, and excitement in the movies to say that I kept expecting more action.

I hope you've enjoyed this little peek into our exciting lives as Mr. and Mrs. Trucker, saving the world from starvation one truckload at a time. We have had to abandon our dream of visiting Portland, Oregon this month, as we appear to be stuck in the south, driving back and forth between Arkansas and Kentucky. By the way, it would appear that Arkansas has a severe shortage of dentists, so if you are wondering what to encourage your kids to be when they grow up...


  1. OK, we passed several hundred thousand (no exaggeration) snow geese today and no pictures? I'm going to have to talk to Bob about this.

    Mr. T

  2. yeah, we want snow geese pictures....also, a few non-snow geese pics too..

    I was always told you can hear who Carly Simon was really singing about if you play the triangle only version of the song backwards....

  3. Be glad you're in the south. It's quite below freezing around here and is probably about the same in Oregon! Go Pack Go! Do they sell green and gold M&M's in Arkansas?