Monday, September 22, 2003

It is a cool, overcast fall-like day on this last day of summer. Tomorrow is the fall equinox. Darkness will claim another three hours before the pendulum swings back towards the forces of good.

I read a little blurb in the paper today that Luke Skywalker is the perfect role model for Generation X because he rebels against his relatives, whines a lot and doesn't get along with his father. A representative from the New York Times called to give me a free trial subscription to the paper. I accepted and just gave my address. I've been through the free month-long trial periods with the Chicago Tribune, so I know it's legit. They just hope you'll get used to the paper and stay on after the trial runs out. I won't, but hey, free papers. Our recycle box is going to explode.

Which reminds me... We call our neighbors across the hall the "typical Americans" because they drive an American car, have or had two box air conditioners in their windows, and produce two huge cans of garbage each week. I also jokingly call them the "frozen food aisle" people, because all their garbage consists of pizza boxes, frozen waffles, TV dinners. And they don't even recycle their aluminum cans. They could save them and make money. Guess I'll profit in their steed. Now that's being American. Finding opportunity in the refuse of others.

I'm proud to say we produce one paper grocery bag of garbage a week. How? We recycle all our paper, plastic, tin, glass, etc., and composte all our organic waste. Our garbage is mostly plastic wrap and tissue paper. Our recycled stuff weighs twice as much as our refuse. Yes, I'm a pompous, hippie, bike riding, Honda Civic driving, beard growing asshole. And the majority of Americans are landfill filling, pot-bellied malnutrioned malcontents with lousy taste in movies and music. Am I an elitist? Hell, yeah. Am I pompous? Not really. I keep my opinions to myself, except in this small egotistical blog. But someday I will broadcast my wisdom to the nation, and they will heed my words or else. Mwuh ha ha ha snicker, snivel, hrumph....

We arrived at the Mondeaux Flowage campground in Taylor County late Friday night and just laid our bags down on a flat spot. I froze my kiester off. Seems my 30-degree rated bag that was used the entire AT thru-hike and countless adventures since, has lost a little loft. I got so cold overnight that I woke up early in the AM shivering, stars twinkling all bright and close, Milky Way visible even, as only it can be in a cool, crisp atmosphere.

Which made for an interesting day of hard labor on the Ice Age Trail. I worked with the West End Crew doing trail re-routes, tread establishment and general vegetation mayhem. Most of the time was spent on the Hemlock Esker. An esker is a snakelike ridge formed by the soil deposits left by a river that ACTUALLY FLOWED ON THE GLACIER. It is one of my favorite features, and I felt privileged to spend the entire day on one. The soil is sandy and loamy and easy to move. Still, I was tired.

I'm running out of Net time. More later? Maybe.

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