HAHAHAHAH FUCK YOU WORLD I HAVE A STETSON HAT. And a poseable Johnny Cash action figure, but that wasn't one of my primary mission objectives. I can now declare this holiday a success and head home†.
Today has mostly been about the rampant consumerism so far, in fact. But I did manage to get a pic of the previously-mithered-about Union Station building, which I am still disgusted is no longer a station:
Since we're on the subject of trains, a snippet of last night's beery tomfoolery: some Yanqui (New York, intelligent, well-travelled, should surely have known better than this) remarked off-hand that it wasn't surprising I hadn't been to mainland Europe much, what with the lack of rail connections. I asked him if he was joking. He wasn't. I asked him if he'd heard of this Channel Tunnel thingy. He hadn't. I told him we'd spent years building a giant rail link sweeping clear under the Channel from London to Paris. He laughed in my face. I recruited a nearby Glaswegian to back me up. He still
didn't believe us, and continued to maintain it was all a giant wind-up until a chap from Minnesota allowed as how we weren't making the whole thing up.
Granted, inventing weird lies about Britain to feed to Americans is a fine sport (I think my brother managed to persuade someone that heroin was available in supermarkets and it was briefly fashionable to contract AIDS during the '80s). But the finest sport is when you tell them entirely true things and they will not be convinced. (Can't remember if the same brother ever convinced anyone that yes, all swans are
owned by the Queen and it's illegal to kill them).
Nashville in numbers:
Confederate flags spotted: still 0. Seriously, what is wrong with you people? South ain't gonna rise unless you buck your ideas up.
Portions of grits eaten: 1. I have no idea why. I got terribly excited about the idea of eating grits last time I came to the south, and discovered last time that they're the sort of hideous slop you work hard and better yourself in order to get away from forever. Biscuits, on the other hand, remain fantastic.
Number of times I've been invited to have a great day: dozens
Number of times I've invited someone to have a great day: 3 or 4, but the phrase is tripping off the tongue more and more easily
Number of times I've forgotten to tip due to transatlantic cultural differences: 0. Score one for the downtrodden service workers of America!
Number of times I've bought the Tennessean newspaper: 1
Number of times I will be buying the Tennessean again: 0††
Number of times killed crossing the road due to instinctively looking the wrong way: still 0. Hooray!
*really 3 or kinda 4 and so on. We'll drop this footnote now, right?
†I should probably go to the wedding I actually came here for, I guess. But hey, STETSON**
**however, the damn thing's black
, which may be the colour of awesomeness but is extremely impractical in 35-degree heat. Oh well
††seriously, no wonder the American newspaper industry is fucked***. Hideous page design and typefaces, maybe two original stories plus a bunch of rehashed AP tape, and a loathsome op-ed calling on Christians to beware the coming dark times now that sinister anti-American, anti-Christian, pro-world government forces control the White House? I wish I had a pile of Morning Stars to run around sticking into the newspaper vending machines†††
***granted, the British newspaper industry is also fucked, but for somewhat different reasons
†††which are the only thing I would keep about the American newspaper industry