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Sunday, November 12, 2017

Til Death Do Us Part

Okay, so it's been quite awhile since I roamed through this abandoned fortress of a blog space.

Jebus, the dust bunnies are the size of Volkswagens in here!! I'm going to need an industrial-sized shop vac to suck up all the dust, debris, and monster-sized arachnids lounging on the couch, binge-watching Judge Judy. GODDAMN those eight-legged freaks are fucking slobs, leaving popcorn and Reese's wrappers all of the floor. I should probably just go ahead and firebomb the entire place, coz they don't look like they're going to play along with this here eviction notice in my sweaty paw, or be repelled by the overuse of hyphenated wording.



Hey. How have you been?

Me? I've been kinda messed up. There have been times in the past two years I started to write, only to find myself mentally incapacitated. Seems I allowed some humans to take the wind out of my penning sails, and that's just plain fucked up, yo. It's totally my fault. I'm a grown-ass adult. (There's that dang hyphen again!) Ain't nobody gonna tell me what to do, except for the last couple years, apparently. I call bullshit on MYSELF for getting sucked into the vortex of self doubt, self pity, self serve line at the grocery store. And don't even get me started on that motherfucker, 45*!

But that is all behind me. I guess. Maybe. I don't know. Quit looking at me with that raised eyebrow. I'm getting there. I'm a work in progress, dammit! Baby steps. Y'all (read: the two of you) were probably happy for the respite anyway. But enough of this BS. Onward, mofos!


So anyway, here's my happy return to the blogosphere.

I murdered my beloved Rita.

For those of you unaware, Rita is my darling red Pontiac Vibe(rator). She is the great mechanical love of my life. She is, hands down, the perfect vehicle; nary an issue, reliable to the nth degree, low to zero maintenance, care free. She exudes happiness, elan, and a verve with every atom of her ruby exterior. She is my 4-wheeled soul mate. As the great Katherine Hepburn says in The Philadelphia Story, she is yar.

And I paid her back by slaughtering her on a suburban street.

Ford Escape: 1
Rita: last rites

I'm so sorry, my love

I'm one of those weirdos who gets attached to cars, and boy, was I attached to Rita. She was amazing. For example, her bumpers were sublime. On more than one occasion, there was a minor altercation wherein the other car had visible damage, but Rita was virtually unscathed. She was a fucking tank!

Except for yesterday.

Yesterday there were many tears.

And gnashing of teeth at my unfathomable stupidity.

I cried real tears when I said goodbye to her. Sure, she's not technically deceased. The insurance adjuster hasn't called the time of death yet, but, look at her. She's pretty much flatlined on life support.

For over 12 years Rita and I had countless adventures together. She was my faithful steed when my love for Rhett and the Old 97's bloomed. Geo and I traveled all over the east coast for Rhett Miller/Francis Dunnery weekend shows. We hit up countless house concerts, private parties, beach trips... Man, could we pack a shit ton of crap in her hatch.

Some of my favorite band road trips with Steph and Leslie were played out behind the wheel of my little sassy, ginger angel. Rochester, City Winery, The Rubin Museum, a blisteringly hot three day 97's road trip to DC, Richmond and Baltimore...

Besides those whom I hold precious, i.e., Geo, Big Mar, my sisters, and my closest friends; some AMAZEBALLS butts have sat in Rita. I used to joke to Geo I could never part with her because the phenomenal talent I have shuttled about in this car is too spectacular to leave behind. No pun intended, mostly.

Here's a list of famous butts who have warmed the seats:

1. Modern day Renaissance man and friend, Francis Dunnery.

the king of hugs and cusses

I had the honor of driving him to breakfast after his only Pittsburgh TV appearance.

As soon as he closed the door to my car, he let loose with a string of every curse word imaginable, let out a big sigh and declared "That's better. I haven't f*cking swore in 20 f*cking minutes!?! Right. Let's go."

He is my swearing spirit animal.

2. Noted YA author and king of all things YouTube and Vidcon, John Green.

in the so-called green room of the Special K

He and I had an incredible conversation on the drive from his hotel in Oakland to downtown where he was a guest on PTL (Jesus Loves You) one year before The Fault in Our Stars was released, and his popularity exploded to quantum proportions. We were his very first television appearance. Now he is a regular guest on legit, big ass, network morning programs. I doubt I will ever have this unique, intimate opportunity again. Ever.

3. Three quarters of the Old 97's.

Murry, Ken and Philip have permitted me the honor of transporting them to and from dinner, the radio station, the airport. Murry has since become a friend and frequent passenger. It is a rare treat to cart Ken and Philip around. One time Leslie and I picked Ken up in front of a magic shop in the South Side after he did his laundry. Those particular Ken stories were hilarious. The blue-eyed one is the lone missing member to make an impression on Rita's front seat. Alas, his inclusion shall never come to pass.

you see him sitting on that hill.
he's bummed he missed the chance to ride with me.
maybe our next car, bud.

4 & 5.  Brian Rosenworcel and Ryan Miller of Guster.

OMG. My friend, Lizzie and I got to spend the BEST SNOW DAY EVER with Guster. I chauffeured Brian and Ryan in my car to search for a suitable dumpster, while she had Adam, Luke and their merch guy in hers. What a crazy, fun day! The recounting of that day is one of the last posts I wrote before I abandoned ship. They are the best!

Do you see why I'm so crestfallen about losing Rita? So many great memories packed in that little red compact car. I'm seriously contemplating having the front passenger seat turned into a chair for the living room. No shit.

Fingers crossed there will be repeat visits from these talented gentlemen in whatever model of transport we choose to follow in Rita's tire treads. They all have an open invitation to ride, in perpetuity. I fear John Green is a goner, though. Who knows who else will find passage in the comfort of our new front bucket seat.

Farewell, my lovely Rita. Rest in peace, my sassy, sprightly, unshakable mechanical sidekick. Thank you for a dozen years of enchanting exploits. You will be forever missed.

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