SwitchSwitch to white text on black.Switch to black text on white.
Draplin Design Co., North America
September 27, 2004
DDC 50: Day 07, Route 66, Texa-Homa
Posted at 01:30 PM


Panhandlin’, Mediocre Music, Flaming Drive-By, Dirty Tulsa For The Night

Out of outskirt Tecumcari and over into Tex-ass. Instantly, a presence of George W. Bush was noticed, be it on passerby trucks or in yard fronts. Fuck. Bums me out to see the stickers, no matter where I�m passin� thru. That idiot has got to go. To see folks rallying behind him, behind a fucking puppet, it gigantically saddens me.

Over to Amarillo, where some 10 miles before the city limits we turned off to check out the Cadillac Ranch. 10 Cadillacs, buried �ass end up.� I guess the local helium baron is a bit of an eccentric guy, sponsoring the Cadillac Ranch, as well as a campaign of silly signs that pop up all over town. We passed up one saying something about �Bates Motel� and �Taxidermy� all in one sign. Hmmm.

- - - -

And across Texas we went, Panhandlin�, all the way to Oklahoma where we turned off some at exit five and cruised into downtown Erick. We followed 66 for a bit, and just when we were ready to cut and run, dad noticed an odd little brick building.

We noticed some authentic 66 signs inside, as well as a million other colorful pieces of interest. We snapped a couple shots, were getting back into the rig, when a grisly, shirtless, bearded fella approached us from a group of houses a block away. Just when I thought we were going to be asked to hit the road, the guy started in with a gruff, �I�m Harley and you�ve made it to Erick, Oklahoma, the Redneck capital of the world!�

We�d arrived.

What unfolded over the next hour is something that�ll stay with dad and I forever. He let us in to his shop, offering me a chance to snap some photos, rattling off how he�d show his �stage� for the Erick�s own, �Mediocre Music Makers.�

His wife soon showed up, �Ms. Annabelle,� and they quickly jumped into their garb, red and white striped overalls.

Overwhelmed by the sheer awesome-ness of the experience, a list is an easier way to share the experience with y�all:

01. Held one of Roger Miller�s Gibson guitars. Y�know� �Bump, bump�King of the Road!�
02. Harley treated us to a blazing rendition of �Get Your Kicks On Route 66� on his guitar, complete with leg kicks and dancin�.
03. Pulled an original �Oklahoma Route 66� sign from 1920 down off the wall for photos. The real thing. Wow.
04. Harley and Annabelle showed us a pile of pictures from friends/production crews covering the spot/various travelers.
05. They invited us over for dinner.
06. They hammed it up for photos, suggesting spots and angles.
07. They sang to us.
08. They hugged us.
09. They waved goodbye, complete with blown kisses as we left.

This is a �must see� Route 66 phenomena. Erick, Oklahoma, on the western side of the state just of of I-40. Go downtown, cross over Route 66 for a block or so and look for the Meat Market brick building on the right. Do not miss this. Worth a trip to Oklahoma, just for this.

SPECIAL THANKS TO HARLEY AND ANNABELLE, for taking time out of their Sunday evening to share so much with dad and I. You guys are kings of the road. Not to be forgotten, any time soon, you bet.

- - - -

Dazed by the dazzling onslaught from Harley and Annabelle, we kept going to Oklahoma City. I have a tradition I honor each time I pass through this town: Going to �Wayne Coyne�s Stately Manor.� Wayne Coyne, y�know, of those goddamn Flaming Lips. I won�t give up the location on this site, as it�s a bit on the �stalker� side of shit.

Each time I pass through I want to run up and knock on the door. I refrain. That�s his home, his space. I�d bet the last thing he�d want is dad and I beaming on the front porch, with outstretched hands looking for handshakes. Or maybe he�d be cool with it? I�ve read that he�s greeted fans with open arms. The place is a palace, and knowing that from behind those walls comes some of the most amazing, creative, inspiring tunes I have ever heard, the quick drive-by always lifts my spirits real high. So cool. Oklahoma�s finest.

- - - -

Spent a half hour checking out the Oklahoma City Federal Building Memorial. Too sad. Too much pain. We quietly paid our respects and were on our way. What a tragedy. This community is tough.

- - - -

We hammered the 100 miles up to Tulsa, had a late night meal at a well-lit Waffle House and called it a night at Super 8 motel.