Sunday, May 08, 2005

Coup de pat?

Bloggos, i'm confused! It's Marissa's turn to escort you through another Underground Literary Adventure, but somehow, she's not here! Ahh, this reminds me of the time in my youth i was briefly kidnapped at the supermarket, by an eccentric old lady who thought i was lost. "Mother...where are you?!," i whimpered and screamed, until the old lady and i found mom just around the corner in the produce aisle... Hey, it was scary at the time!

Anyway, as part of my therapy i'm now going to play that old lady (complete with dentures, vericose veins, and plaid dress) and i will drag you around by the arm, until Marissa shows up again. I vaguely remember her sending me an email about taking a trip in May, but at this point i can't recall who or what it all means, and/or what i'm supposed to do about it.

Thus, i have declared martial law and seized control of the Adventures blog. I have installed Logan Mason as our writer this week, so here he is. Enjoy! -Pat S.


Excerpt from Southbound Out
by Logan Mason

The next morning I shook Faith awake as one went by. We didn't have time to make it but we woke. I played with the radio and after about an hour I found something: Good ol' Johnny Cash doin one about ramblin. Then, on cue, our ride was movin down the tracks; a hot shot to Spokane. I could feel it. No more junk, never again.

There was one train moving in front of the one we wanted, creeping slowly with gondolas of scrap metal, and empty, and with coal. We crossed over and got the second one, the Hottie...

Sitting on the side bars and the cross bars of a hollow well with double stacked containers of important cargo, including us, especially, we rode out, with Faith and the cat on one side - hidden - and myself on the other. The state of Washington. A nice change from Southern and Central California where folks are everywhere fondling their cell phones. Washington felt all right, especially at a good speed. We didn't have to hide most of the time. We passed beach and water and the recreationers of it, went thru mountain and trees, and a tunnel longer than I had ever been in. Numbered lights appeared on the right out of the pitch dark, under a thick cloud of sulfur from the front, counting down every quarter mile begining with #40, or #30 - I can't recall.

Out of the tunnel the rest of the state was empty and vast - all clear cut a very long time ago. Our train never stopped. Nothing was in the way. It was going 50 or 60, but it seemed like more. It feels faster on a train. Most of the time we spent it up top on the grid. I laid my legs out over the space between the cars with feet kicked up on the other side. Leaning back I could feel the car in front turn before our car did the same. A fast winding beast of a train. She had style, going fast. It reminded me of Sex and Heroin; but it was it's own, and we were on for the ride. It was as simple and fleeting as that.

She looped sharp in a U, we were about half way back, and I was stretched across the cars in my brimmed hat blowing harp. Directly across a small valley the conductor hung his head out looking across the U at me. For him it must have been like a time warp with my getup, I thought. An escape to the past. And it was a funny thing but I knew we were safe.

We stopped once in Wenatchee then picked up again. It was one of the best rides of my life. I was doing good. Then I looked down at my pack and the front pocket was flip-flapping open over the exposed rushing bones below. I had lost some important items out of my supply because of some simple stoned carelessness. Among the most important was helpful information I had to aid to me along in my traveling; not something you can buy. And as I was headed to Chicago next, into the throbbing busy heart of all the railroads, I lost some stability with it gone. I lost other things too, but I had to let it go. How could I dwell when it was just stuff and we had already lost a friend? But there was a theme settling into the trip, gradually realizing us. I resolved to re-acquire what I needed in Spokane, and it really wasn't so bad; in a way it was cleansing.

Nineteen or twenty hours later we were in Spokane, the city I was born in. The train stopped in the outskirts, waited, pulled ahead slow. Then Faith screamed! Bowser's leash was caught on the tracks and he fell under the train. Quickly I turned around to see his kitten face looking up pleading to me - meowing - then covered up by the train. I jumped the side of the well and hit the ground, found Bowser underneath stuck still in the same spot and tried calling to him to come to me but he was frozen. And the train was picking up a little speed. A set of wheels passed and I had a few more moments before the next and I went under. Terrible exciting blissful panic entered into me half under the train when I grabbed the cat and tried pulling him out but the wound up leash held us back. For a quick second we were fucked! Then I pulled hard, and got him out. He dug his claws into my shoulder and we ran back to the well, now four cars ahead.

I saved Faith's cat and she was thankful and Bowser and I were too.


LOGAN MASON was born Spokane Wa., January 11, 1980.
Lived in Concord Ca. age 5-16, Antioch Ca. 16-21.
Lived in Humboldt county and traveling since 2001.
Been riding trains 4yrs., Writing 3yrs.

Possesions include one dusty pickup with shell, ropes,
tarps, canned and dry food, machetes, etc. One all
purpose traveling pack/home, with sleeping bag, etc.
Three hundred dollars.

To his credit he has No children, No traps, some
warrants, a couple of pictures and a couple of short
films on Super8, a stapled skull and whiplash.


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