September 11th, 2007

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Rubber tramp

Tuesday, September 11th, 2007

I am convinced that there are few feelings that can rival the thrill of crossing the border from eastern Oregon into western Idaho, where the speed limit leaps from 65 to 75. I accelerate, accelerate, accelerate, set the cruise control at 80, and FLY.

As I drove across the farmland of southern Idaho this afternoon, I reflected on my new reality. I now begin a lifestyle of working every other day. Except weekends. And I take the weekdays off. Permanent vacation without pay.

I am officially unemployed.

I will miss certain parts of my now-former job. The relationships that I formed at UPC were invaluable, and to be honest, I have been too overwhelmed at the actuality of leaving Seattle to really process the fact that I am gone. It will probably catch up with me somewhere around western Kansas, an area that makes me certain that there truly is a hell. But until then, I am marveling at the prospect of having no schedule, no place to be, no time constraints. Free as a bird, I am…

I listened to Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild on CD today, and learned a new term: rubber tramp. To help you get the meaning, let me use it in a sentence: “I am a rubber tramp.”

Too vague? Oh.

A leather tramp is a wanderer who travels on his own two feet. A rubber tramp is a vagrant with the added bonus of a vehicle. And speaking of my vehicle, it truly is PACKED to the ceiling with stuff. I cannot see out the back window, or either of the back side windows. And speaking from personal experience tonight on the streets of Salt Lake City, parallel parking by braille is a huge challenge, even for the self-proclaimed champion of the hypothetical Parallel Parking Olympics.