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MAD DOG ON THE ROAD
Part I - Proof that God has a sense of humor
by Mad Dog
One of the first things I
discovered by taking the scenic route is that country people enjoy driving farm vehicles
on the road as slowly as they possibly can.
|| A few years ago I had a
girlfriend who used to say God laughed like Ricky Ricardoin big, loud hyena-like
guffaws. After only a few days on the road I can safely say she was right.
Im in Day Five of a 3 to 4 week cross country
trip thats taking me from Virginia to California. Just me in a rental car with a
trunk full of my belongings. Oh yeah, and fourteen AAA maps, a jar of hot peppers stuffed
with proscuitto someone gave me as a last minute going away present, and a collection of
Graceland souvenirs that includes an Elvis Presley fly swatter, a "Taking Care of
Business" shot glass and a Christmas Ornament that ought to play "Blue
Christmas" but doesnt. What the hell, I bought it anyway.
But back to God and his sense of humor. One
of the first things I discovered by taking the scenic route is that country people enjoy
driving farm vehicles on the road as slowly as they possibly can because, well, its
too wet to plow right now and besides, there arent many things in life as enjoyable
as antagonizing us city folk.
The next thing I discovered is that there
is indeed a sense of justice to life, which lead me to formulate Mad Dogs First
Rule of the Road: The more beautiful the countryside, the worse off the people who
live there will be. This is a part of a master plan designed to drive the well-heeled
tourists absolutely insane. For no matter how nice their house is, no matter how much
money it cost, it still cant compare to the incredible view of the cliffs seen daily
by people whose houses are three quarters of the way to biodegrading.
second epiphany occurred in Nashville when I saw a cinnamon bun that looks exactly like
|| Heres an example:
I went to see Cumberland Falls, which is a magnificent sight near Somerset, Kentucky. This
is the second largest waterfall east of the Mississippi, the first, of course being
whats streaming out of my bathtub since I just realized I forgot to shut off the
water before I left the house. Actually, the largest is Niagara Falls, which you may
remember is the capital of honeymoons and barrel-rafting as well as the site of a famous
routine by Abbott and Costello. The irony of Cumberland Falls is that you have to go
through Wayne County to get there. According to a friend of mine who lives in the area,
Wayne County holds the honor of having the highest incidence of incest and inbreeding in
the country. Yes, God is laughing like Ricky Ricardo.
(IMPORTANT NOTE: This fact has not been independently verified by me, my editors, or
the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse. Any residents of Wayne County who play the banjo,
look like Jason from "Friday the 13th", think "Deliverance" is a
historical family documentary, and like hearing grown men squeal like pigs are asked to
please not take the preceding comment seriously.)
While were talking about interesting
sights, this is the perfect time to point out Mad Dogs Second Rule of the Road:
Always look at your breakfast plate before eating. This wasnt formulated, as you
might think, at the Blue and White Restaurant in Tunica, Mississippi over a plate of
scrambled eggs and brains (which interestingly is an adjectival reversal of my own
personal problem). The truth is, if youre driving down Route 61 and youre
hungry I highly recommend stopping at the Blue and White for breakfast. There are, after
all, plenty of things on the menu which dont contain curried cerebral cortexes.
Actually my second epiphany occurred in Nashville when I saw a cinnamon bun that looks
exactly like Mother Theresa.
untold numbers of bleary-eyed cappuccino drinkers can start their day by pointing to the
Holy Cruller and saying, "Give me that cinnamon bun that looks like a dried apple
|| "Big deal,"
youre probably saying as you stop mashing a rutabaga that looks like Richard Nixon
as portrayed by Anthony Hopkins. "Dont all cinnamon buns look like saints if
you squish up your eyes and let them go out of focus as you shove the whole thing into
your mouth in one bite?"
sure they do, but they dont look as good as this one. Unlike more traditional
religious sightings, like the image of Jesus seen on the billboard for a spaghetti
restaurant (supposedly true story!), this Immaculate Confection is a solid, 3-dimensional
object and is on display at Bongo Java, a coffeehouse in Nashville. Its really
startling. There it is, lacquered for posterity in a glass case under the cash register,
surrounded by an assortment of voodoo-like shrine accouterments and a sign that says,
"Do not use flashbulbs." Now untold numbers of bleary-eyed cappuccino drinkers
can start their day by pointing to the Holy Cruller and saying, "Give me that
cinnamon bun that looks like a dried apple doll. And while youre at it throw in a
Shroud of Turin scone too."
But in the interest of charity, goodwill,
and any last hope for salvation, I think they should send this cinnamon bun where it can
do the most goodCalcutta, India. No, I dont harbor any naive ideas that it
would go very far in feeding the hungry masses, but I am pretty sure it would be an
inspiration to the 100 nuns who are gathered there trying to choose a successor to Mother
Theresa. Theyve been having a difficult time of this. A coffee break might do them
some good. Besides, Im sure God could use another hearty Ricardo laugh right about
©1997 Mad Dog Productions, Inc. All
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