Thursday, April 16, 2009

Carp to Belle River, a journey in random mode

Unlike the trip back from visiting family for Easter, the trip down was actually a pretty good one. The car was well provisioned with snack foods and juice boxes for the kids, and diet Cokes for me. The gas tank was full, and the MP3 player was charged.

I don't have an iPod, I have an RCA Lyra which has a very temperamental operating system that makes random mode about the only good way to listen to it. I loaded it up with songs that I like, and ones the girls like, and hooked it into the FM modulator so we could listen to it over the car radio. On the dot of 7 a.m. (well, more like 7:15, but still scarily on schedule) we hit the road. I pressed play.

7:17 a.m. Pulling onto Craig Side Road. Playing: I Wanna be Sedated by the Ramones.

  • OK. Not the most auspicious beginning-the-journey song. And I probably won't want sedation until at least Woodstock. Maybe London.
9ish. Hwy 7, somewhere near Tweed. Playing: She's got the Jack by AC/DC.

  • Alison [internal monologue]: Funny. A song about cards. I *think* it's about cards. [singing along with song]: "She gave me the Queen, She gave me the King, She was wheelin' and dealin', Just doin' her thing, She was holdin' a pair, But I had to try, Her Deuce was wild, But my Ace was high." [back inside head]: Yep, cards. Stop. Wait a minute -- I'm thinking maybe "the Jack" is a euphemism! "And if I'd known what she was dealin' out, I'd have dealt it back" Ooooh. Oh. Well, I'll be damned. It's a song about STDs. Probably should be "She's got the clap." Heh. Not cards.

  • Leah: What's this song about, Mum?


  • Alison: Cards.
9:20 a.m. Somewhere along Hwy 37.

  • Pull over to use the very user-UNfriendly playlist 'feature' to find some Taylor Swift for the girls. Love Story for Leah, and Our Song for Rachel. This takes about 15 minutes, but forestalls all the pouting that I could see coming when I looked in the rear-view mirror.

10:07 a.m. Turning off Hwy 37 onto the 401 at Belleville. Playing: Kiss by Tom Jones (his cover of the Prince song).

  • Yeah, I know. Mega cheese. But this song is like Roquefort -- horribly stinky, but very enjoyable in small quantities.

11:25 a.m. Hwy 401, going through Oshawa. Playing: Three Pistols by the Tragically Hip.

  • I'm freshly caffeinated, back on the highway after a drive-through, riding the coffee buzz with a Timmie's large (double double, of course) in my hand, Lake Ontario looking so blue to my left, rocking out to this song, and it suddenly hits me that I couldn't feel more Canadian if the girls were wearing hockey jerseys and eating poutine in the back seat, while Margaret Atwood rode shotgun with a beaver on her lap drinking a Keith's.

12:33 p.m. Hwy 401, cruising through Toronto. Playing: What is Love by Haddaway.

  • This song comes on and I start to laugh, remembering downloading it one night after a couple of glasses of wine. I tell the girls that they have to shake their heads to the side in their seats like in A Night at the Roxbury (which started from this Saturday Night Live skit). They've never seen the movie, but I demonstrate, and they get right into it, and the three of us are shaking our heads in perfect unison, when I look to my left and see the driver of an 18-wheeler watching us and cracking up. I wave.

1:21 p.m. Hwy 401, just past Cambridge. Playing: Learning to Fly by the Foo Fighters

  • I look at the speedometer. Oops. 130 km/h! Good thing I haven't seen any OPP since Port Hope, I was flying.

2:30 p.m. Hwy 401 near Chatham. Playing: Detroit '67 by Sam Roberts.

  • Wasn't 1967 the year of the Detroit riots? Ironic, seeing as there's a riot breaking out in the back seat. Someone did something horrible, like breathe the other one's air, or take up a nanometre of the other one's side of the seat.

3:30 p.m. Belle River, Ontario, my sister's driveway

  • I'll take that sedation now. Make mine a glass of red.


13 comments:

  1. You have so many memorable quotes. This one is probably my favorite:

    riding the coffee buzz with a Timmie's large (double double, of course) in my hand, Lake Ontario looking so blue to my left, rocking out to this song, and I couldn't feel more Canadian if the girls were wearing hockey jerseys and eating poutine in the back seat, while Margaret Atwood rode shotgun with a beaver on her lap drinking a Keith's.

    the imagery is just so striking.

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  2. Bill Walsh1:16 AM

    Terrific, terrific piece, Al. I was laughing out loud (rare) and had to read it to Julie. Too good. Thank you.

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  3. Seriously? That song is about STDs? I had NO idea. I need to look at those lyrics again.

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  4. Testament to your genius that you made me wish I had been in the car with you!

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  5. Awesome post. Reminds me of "To Whom it May Concern, I am Grumpy", which was your first post that I read, which is when you were the first blog EVER I added to my blogroll (I know. Must be thrilling for you).

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  6. I am with richgold on that - absolutely poetic!

    Had me laughing as well....

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  7. LOL... great journey in song.

    "Mom, what does this song mean?" -- Sink the Pink? Oh, it's about pool.
    The harder ones are actually things like 'It's a good life if you don't weaken.'

    Inevitably Three Pistols comes on the Shuffle when I'm running along the River.
    "Tom Thompson came paddlin' past...
    I'm pretty sure it was him."

    And I always check... (there never is.)

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  8. "I couldn't feel more Canadian if the girls were wearing hockey jerseys and eating poutine in the back seat, while Margaret Atwood rode shotgun with a beaver on her lap drinking a Keith's." I love this, too! I need to know if this was a spontaneous image that came to you or if you had to work at it?

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  9. XUP - It was spontaneous. Chalk it up to the combination of vacation exhilaration, coffee, and one of my favourite songs from one of my favourite bands, one that's quintessentially Canadian. The image just popped into my mind, and I was thinking that Margaret would be a great person to road trip with, I bet she'd be interesting to talk to, and she might share her Keith's too. :-)

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  10. We all love the Ramones here. T, my 5yo son knows a lot of the lyrics, well, his own version of the lyrics, to some of their songs.

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  11. love the image of you and the girls bopping away to what is love - and getting caught!

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  12. Krista10:33 AM

    That was fun to read. Very funny :)

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  13. Okay, we HAVE to do a road trip together one day, my girl. Belle River? Practically my old stomping ground! Loved this post...

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