Friday, July 2, 2010

ROAD TRIP! My odd-yssy to Monster Bash 2010

Well another Monster Bash has come and gone. In case you hadn't heard of it, Monster Bash is an annual classic Horror/Science Fiction movie convention that takes place in Bulter Pennsylvania each year. This was my fourth year attending but my first a) with my brother and b) driving there and back again. Here are just a few thoughts and observations of the trip:

Day 1-Minneapolis-perhaps appropriately, there is a thick fog on the highway for the first 45 minutes out of town, and not just in our heads. There was a classic late 40's-early 50's Mercury pick-up truck parked on my street when I left. I took this to be a good omen, as it lokked just like the truck used by the linemen in "It Came From Outer Space", just before they are absorbed by the one-eyed alien. Did I say a good sign?

The trip itself was uneventful, but there were delays around Minneapolis due to construction on their speedways, er , freeways. The motel was Ok, but the staff was surley and the phone in the room didn't work. I won't rat them out by saying their name, needless to say it is a motel chain numbered somewhere between 5 and 7.

Day 1-Chicago-I like to call this "hell day". Actually it was more like "hell afternoon" as the morning was quite nice. Drove through Wisconsin, a refugium for cheese and fireworks stores (we actually used this as an exclamation..."cheese and fireworks!!"...we hope it will catch on better than "gee whiz"). Also plently of big-box porn stores along the highway. Played "what's that smell" several times. The cow, pictured above, was from a cheese store in said state. I love Wisconsin.

Afternoon, approached the Chicago freeway system with well-deserved dread. It seems like construction and detours are the name of the game this year, and we wound up getting lost TWICE before we actually reached our motel. Saw endless signs for "Krazy Klein" the firework king, offering "buy one get SIX free"! The sign directing us to our motel was about 4 feet high and approxmately the size of a shoe box (again, the motel chain number between 5 and 7). The TV in the room didn't work, the staff was again surley, and we were caught in a torrential downpour after walking next-door to have dinner. After we reached our TV-less room, the power went off briefly, leaving us laughing a lot like Lionel Atwill in one of the movies we love to watch.

Day 3-back-tracked through a toll-gate to get out of Chicago, but otherwise a nice smooth trip across Indiana and Ohio to get to Pennsylvania. Saw the best road name ever: Fangboner Road. I would LOVE to live on "Fangboner Road"

Day 4-5-6: MONTER BASH Always a great time, but the Bash seemed a little subdued this year. Got to meet Julie Adams from "Creature from the Black Lagoon" and Ann Robinson from "War of the Worlds". Watched the Mexican schlock classic "Little Read Riding Hood Meets the Monsters" and listened to UFO researcher Stan Gordon talk for what seemed like 6 hours on the "kecksburg" incident and how UFO's and Bigfoot (Bigfoots? Bigfeet?) seem to be related. Mused at the irony that EVRY ONE of his slides seemd to be blurry. Didn't sleep much, but had a great time!

Day 7-END RUN AROUND CHICAGO-we REALLY didn't want to be trapped in Chicago and environs so we booted it across the border back into Wisconsin. Stayed at a larger-numbered motel chain (between 7 and 9) and watched public-access political opinion panels from Kenowsha (should smoking be banned in restaurants and bars? Didn't we go through this about 10 years ago?) Saw a sign for the greatest recreational facility in the world: the "Bong Recreational park". Oh yeah.

Day 8-END RUN AROUND MINNEAPOLIS-again, trying to avoid the freeway experience. I think I understand why some people go "postal" if they have to deal with that every day of their lives. Stayed in St. Cloud for the night, home of the St. Cloud River Bats (great logo, a baseball bat with little bat wings. I thought I could hear people singing " tra-lah-tra-lee-hocus pocus")

Day 9-home again home again. The border crossings were acually quite civilized going both ways. Driving at 60kph in the city felt like I was walking slowly. Home safe and ready for next year!

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