My sister Lisa came to pick up the kids this morning. She and Mark took them to the Georgia Aquarium. Todd and I went to his office, picked up the Ryder Van and Ronald McDonald, and hit the road for Orlando. Yes, I said “Ronald McDonald.” (I call him Ronnie. We are on first name terms after riding from Atlanta to Orlando all day. He likes classic rock.) He is starring in a shoot that Todd is working on in Orlando. Ronnie cost $10,000 to make. Unfortunately, I forgot my cord to upload pictures to the computer, so you will have to wait on pics of Ronnie. Suffice to say that his fucking clown feet are huge, and I got a little scared when the sun went down and it was just Todd, Ronnie, and me in the van.
Other gems of wisdom obtained by riding in a van for 9 hours with my hung over husband (Advertising Awards – who knew those addies were so wild?) and Ronnie:
- Mrs. Winner’s biscuits are awesome, but the ones at Cracker Barrel are better. That being said, if you eat both, along with mac and cheese, fried okra, mashed potatoes and fried shrimp, you will feel sick. Especially while bumping along crappy roads in north central Florida.
- When choosing a ten cent peppermint stick at Cracker Barrel, just choose Butterscotch flavor. Other good flavors include: Cherry Cola, Strawberry, etc. Do not choose “Horehound” flavor, simply because it sounds like a good fit. You will spend the next forty minutes eating a stick of candy that you do not find that appetizing, and regretting your faulty choice while your husband sucks merrily away on his butterscotch one.
- Radio stations from about Macon, GA to Orlando suck ass, with the exception of the University of Florida station, which played Fugazi’s “Suggestion,” but neglected to play the next track, “Glue Man,” which sucks for anyone who really likes the album, because it just ruins it when the tracks split. We then drove out of their piddly range. U of Florida itself, and the greater Gainesville area, also suck ass.
- The other exception to the radio rule is the awesome bluegrass show with a local doing the dj thing and giving shoutouts to the regular listeners, who are all named Mac or Bud or Bubba. “Wabash Cannonball” at sunset was rather nice. Also the song about letting the racehorse run.
- Another radio rule: If you come across a song you even remotely like, for instance, “I Just Called to Say I Love You,” or ELO’s “Don’t Bring Me Down,” just go ahead and go with it, because it is the best you are going to do for, like, an hour. You will spend the next ten minutes just scanning through the GodRock, scripture-readers, scary-talk, and new country stations. If you find a classic rock station, just leave the dial the fuck alone. If you, like us, manage to get a run of Van Halen, Pink Floyd, Neil Young, CCR, and Tom Petty with Stevie Nicks, count yourself lucky. BTW, that whole intro to Van Halen’s cover of “You Really Got Me” is fucking awesome.
- Don’t be alarmed when you enter Florida and are greeted by the Shoot First, Ask Questions Later signs. Or the “Repent Sinners!” signs. Or when you are cast in shadow by the frighteningly large Confederate battle flag by the highway. The people are so nice, despite the fact that they try to scare you with their flags and guns and bibles and gators.
Okay, so we get to the hotel (Doubletree Orlando, across the street from Universal.) We go in, get a bellhop/valet guy to help me with the bags while Todd secures van and Ronnie. I start talking to the guy – turns out it has been a wild weekend. There is a TNA wrestling event going on tonight and tomorrow night. I didn’t know anything about this, but according to my awesome bartender Tony, they do it once a month at Universal, and everyone is totally cool, and a lot of the women are really skinny and have implants. I am so excited about my people-watching tomorrow.
That being said, the people-watching tonight wasn’t too bad. I didn’t see R2D2, as we missed him by about five minutes at the hotel bar, but I did get to see LeatherFace from the new Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and also the artist who did all of the KISS album covers. Awesome. Oh, and some gray-haired old guy who is in a Geicko commercial – Peter Graves, maybe? Other people who were at this nerd orgy: http://www.fxshow.com/guests.htm
More to come from the Starbucks downstairs in the morning. Will have camera and laptop in hand. Come on, hot guy from Eureka! Or The Greatest American Hero!