Thursday, July 8, 2010

15 - July 8, 2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

July 8, 2010 – In My Footsteps Trip

1.      Visited Scituate, Cohasset, Hull, and Hingham today, $15 in gas got me home on fumes, total of about 175 miles.
2.      Finally got sunburned today, knew it was coming eventually, it took me this long to remember bug spray, now sunscreen is on my list of things to get.  Face, neck, arms, lobster red, yes.
3.      Seems like I see deer on almost every trip now.  Saw one at Wompatuck State Park in Hingham trying to cross the road, it hid in the woods but I distracted it long enough to get a few shots.
4.      Got to see a place in Scituate called The Old Oaken Bucket, the only reference I had for this place was the fact that it was a joke in a Three Stooges short, but hey that’s more knowledge than most I guess.
5.      Once again my GPS tries to kill me.  It tried to get me to cut across Rt. 3A in Weymouth, not to mention go over a center median.  I wanted McDonalds but not enough to kill myself, damn British Nanny!
6.      I love it when a guy is speeding and weaving in and out of traffic and then ends up getting behind me where I slow down to piss him off.  I could see the veins pulsing in his neck, ha ha, ass.
7.      Had a great visit with the head of the Historical Society in Scituate.  He happened to be locking up Lawson Tower when I arrived.  I used my clout as a writer to get him to let me inside, that’s a first.  It is a really cool place, you have to see it.
8.      I did feel kind of bad when he was showing me around inside and started falling all over these scattered boards, I told him we could go back outside before he got killed.
9.      Is it sad that when I was at the Historical Society building and saw a patch of sunflowers that all I thought of was the racist sunflower on Family Guy?
10.  It’s amazing how many dark blue Jetta’s I see on the road, like 7 today.  Didn’t think that many were made, I mean who even drives one?  Oh yeah, sorry, ha ha.
11.  So, I got these bug repellant wipes, they worked good except for the fact that it was 95 degrees and when I started sweating I got sweat mixed with bug repellant in my eyes.  Of course this got worse when I foolishly wiped my eyes with my bare arms which also contained the repellant.  Sucked to be me then.
12.  In a real bit of random humor some guy left a box of Nutty Bars on the hood of his truck at the Cohasset Sailing Club.  Hadn’t seen those in years, and also how smart is it to leave chocolate out in crazy heat.  Bet those tasted good.
13.  Saw so many amazing spots to photograph while driving that I was literally jerking the wheel off to the side not caring about human life.  Yeah I hear you beeping but my photos are worth more to me than you sucker.
14.  Did you know that the ancestors of Abraham Lincoln have roots in Hingham?  Neither did I until I happened upon a statue of him in a little green area, across the street is a house built by a Samuel Lincoln who settled Hingham, still trying to find out how he is related to the President.
15.  So you will not believe this, while walking around the Cohasset Green this church next door starts playing music, no not religious music but Ernie’s ‘Rubber Ducky’ and ‘Sing A Song.’  Yes, the church was playing Sesame Street songs with its bells.  Un-freaking-real.
16.  Actually saw a cop helping a pair of landscapers in Scituate change a tire today, didn’t know cops actually did stuff like that, maybe they get a bad rap from the fat lazy ones directing traffic.
17.  The cool tower at Fort Revere in Hull was of course not open again, but instead I got to chase a lone turkey around the grass.  It was like Homer Simpson chasing squirrels with his high pitched giggle.
18.  At Wheelwright Park in Cohasset there was a rock called ‘Devil’s Chair,’ it looked like a seat, being a bit superstitious I chose not to put my butt down there.
19.  I got to refill my water bottle with fresh spring water from a place called Mount Blue Spring in Wompatuck State Park in Hingham.  Then I proceeded to take a photo of myself enjoying it, in case my words didn’t do the trick.
20.  Speaking of the spring, some guy there had at least a dozen gallon jugs he was filling.  Is water that expensive guy?
21.  To celebrate their 375th anniversary Hingham painted a parade route with red, white, and blue lines on the street.  I got a good shot of it as cars kept trying to force me to cross the street, waving me on over and over, if they’d have left me alone I’d have gotten the shot sooner.
22.  The ride home was so easy, too easy, had to make up for it by having 3 registers go down at Stop & Shop in Hyannis, seriously, all I had was burn spray for my lobster skin, you’d think they’d have 1 person who knew how to fix those things.
23.  I really can’t wait until the day when travel writing is a full-time gig, it’s all I ever want to do, being inside working now is torture.
Quote of the Day: “A real man elevates himself to see above the trees rather than cutting them down to his size.” – Christopher J. Setterlund
Song of the DayRadiohead - Weird Fishes
Photo of the Day: Statue of Abraham Lincoln in Hingham, Ma.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

14 - July 7, 2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

July 7, 2010

1.      Got a phone call the other day from someone with the same number as me, just a different area code.  Thought it might have been me from the future calling to tell me last night’s lottery numbers.  No such luck.
2.      In a weird moment on the 4th we had the film Independence Day on and the song ‘Hallelujah’ was on Pandora, it synced up as the aliens began blowing up the cities.  It fit so well that it was eerie.
3.      Has anybody seen this Shake-Weight product?  It’s basically a vibrating dumbbell.  There is something quite provocative when you see a woman using this weight, check out the ads and you’ll see what I mean.
4.      Okay, so if ESPN is all about sports why the hell do they clog up time with poker, spelling bees, and hot dog eating contests?  Did these suddenly become sports when I wasn’t looking?  I’d rather see them throw water polo and ping pong on there then this junk.
5.      Can’t believe that I had to get up earlier than I do for work to go to jury duty.  Oh yeah and they also sent me to the furthest courthouse, nearly an hour away, it was 95 degrees, and I got sent home at 10:30.  I was pretty steamed, wish there had been a trial, I would have fried whoever it was.
6.      On the bright side I did get to watch a cheesy video about jury duty.  You ever see the old Simpsons episodes with the Troy McClure videos?  It was like that sort of cheese.
7.      Have you seen the video called ‘Drinking Out of Cups’ on YouTube?  It might be the most random, funniest 3 minutes.  The recording is of a real guy locked in a closet tripping on acid.  You’ll love it.
8.      I finally heard the ‘Please Stay, Lebron’ song that the folks in Cleveland did to the tune of ‘We Are the World.’  It might be the saddest thing I’ve heard, and very funny.  It includes local ‘celebrities’ like car salesmen, news reporters, and politicians.  Of course the only real star the city has, Drew Carey, is nowhere to be found.  Smart move.
9.      Happy 70th birthday on the 6th to former Beatle Ringo Starr, wonder if he got a yellow submarine?
10.  So Lindsay Lohan gets 90 days in jail for violating her probation?  Part of me says ‘good, maybe she’ll now smarten up.’  Still, part of me feels bad, it’s been said enough that in today’s society we build people up to tear them down, and then at times build them up again.   I hope she realizes she has caused a lot of this and can lead a ‘normal’ Hollywood life in 3 months.
11.  Visited my Nana’s house today which is being cleaned and painted by my Uncle Bob for sale.  I could not go inside, it has been six months but it still makes me sad to know she is not here.  I know change is inevitable and something you cannot stop, but it seems like the only change I keep seeing is loss, I hate losing, especially loved ones.
12.  Saw an old favorite today, there is this guy with a cane and tourettes that walks all over Yarmouth and Hyannis yelling obscenities to himself.  He was walking down Rt. 28 today.  He has a younger, chinless, brother that goes to my gym and does the same.  Seriously, the guy has no chin, just a mouth and neck.
13.  Bought some beer today and did not get carded.  It was sort of cool until I realized that my grey in my beard is not helping me look young. 
Retro Impressions:  For this insane heat wave I thought I’d wheel out my first ‘retro impression’ which will be like what I mention every time except that it took place years ago.  They are still relevant though.-à I remember landscaping back in 2002, working on a job digging out a 6 foot deep ditch in Sagamore.  No shade, about 100 degrees, insane humidity.  Oh yeah and I left my water in another truck.  After an hour I started seeing purple spots.  Got home after a long day and wanted to take a cold shower, the water hit and it was like Andre the Giant putting me in a bearhug.  I can only assume it was heat exhaustion, not quite heat stroke, but no fun none the less.
Quote of the Day: “True friendship is a plant of slow growth, and must undergo and withstand the shocks of adversity before it is entitled to the appellation."  - George Washington
Photo of the Day:  The Man At the Wheel – Gloucester, Mass.

Friday, July 2, 2010

13 - July 1, 2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

July 1, 2010 – In My Footsteps Travel Day

1.      Returned to Gloucester, I had an even better time since I knew the places I wanted to see.
2.      Also hit Rockport again and Ipswich, the North Shore is like a dream every time I go, 3 trips thus far and probably 1 or 2 more to go.
3.      There was so much traffic from just north of Boston down about 10 miles, it was the only hiccup on a nearly flawless trip.  Even that was cool as I got to flirt with girls passing by, hey you never know, right?
4.      Did over 230 miles today on $20 of gas, did I mention how much I love my car?
5.      At Stage Fort Park in Gloucester there was a lot with a guy at a shack looking for $10 to park for the beach.  Little did he know that across the street were free spots, for 20 minutes at least, which is all I needed.  Ha ha, sucker, I smiled and waved, he was not amused.
6.      Got to see a drawbridge go up today in Gloucester, I was stuck on one side with two hot college girls.  Oh no, whatever shall I do!
7.      So I am walking out on this trail or rock pieces to see the Thacher Island Twin Lights in Rockport when what do I see sort of hanging out on the rocks but a big gray Tupperware bin, yeah I thought it was random too.
8.      At a great little spot called Bearskin Neck in Rockport I got to witness this Crocodile Dundee looking guy holding up traffic by repeatedly saying to one car ‘Welcome to Rockport.’  It’s like, dude, they know where they are after the first 10 times you said it.  Then he also was yelling at a guy fishing to ‘rip ‘em out of the water.’  Funny, but crazy too.
9.      There was this dog in the doorway of a store staring at me, he was fine until after I snapped a photo, then he flipped out.  Maybe he doesn’t like his picture being taken?
10.  There was a little blond-haired boy calling out ‘Opa’ over and over, then it hit me that he meant Grampa in German.  How did I know?  From having to write German dialogue in my book Second Coming.  Yes, I officially rule, understanding German on the streets of Rockport.
11.  Bearskin Neck also was home to a yodeling pickle as well as creepy mannequin heads in a second floor window.  The place is great, like a big outdoor mall made of old fishing shacks.
12.  I remembered seeing in Stop & Shop this week lots and lots of the refills for the OFF repellant clip-ons but none of the clip-ons themselves.  These would have served me well walking through the woods where I became an afternoon snack for tons of bugs.
13.  Oh yeah, and a greenhead fly stowed away in my car for the ride home in traffic.  Nothing beats trying to kill something and drive.  It’s probably still in there now, sleeping and waiting for me to go to work tomorrow.
14.  They need to make Annisquam Lighthouse in Gloucester a little easier to find, without a GPS it would stay lost.  The long search was worth it though, lots of great shots of it.
15.  There was this little guy going round checking all of the parking meters along Bearskin Neck, at least I thought it was a guy until she turned around, ugh, cold shivers, with her buzzcut, I had to go dive in the harbor to escape.
16.  Went to a place called Castle Hill in Ipswich, turns out it was used in the movie The Next Karate Kid, the one with Hilary Swank, never saw it but hey I lied to the gatekeeper.
17.  In the latest edition of my GPS trying to kill me, this time my British Nanny tried to tell me to take the carpool lane on I-93.  I refused and then as I was stuck in traffic I watched several cars with only one person inside go by in the carpool lane.  I could hear my Nanny voice saying ‘I told you so silly Yankee.’
18.  My last stop in Ipswich was to be the Turner Hill Mansion, or so my GPS said.  I drove inside this place and it ended up being a damn golf course and resort, no mansion.  So I figured I’d take a photo, too bad this jerk that had been tailgating me decided to park in my shot, so I had to stand there like an idiot waiting for him to move.
19.  Was excited to visit a place called Dogtown in Gloucester, it was an abandoned old settlement from the 17th century.  Never got to see it since the bugs were killing me, but I did get to hear a fight between a couple construction guys, that was almost as good.

Quote of the Day:  “Welcome to Rockport.” –Crocodile Dundee looking guy, over and over, to a car trying to park at Bearskin Neck.  Maybe he was a robot whose circuits got scrambled?

Photo of the Day:  Motif #1: Rockport, Mass.