Memphis offers impressive breakfasts every day. Today we selected the Barksdale Restaurant, an unassuming brick box of Southern comforts. To our surprise, retired sergeant Bunny Colvin sat alone at a four-top, while in a booth detective Auggie Polk slurped down coffee before working “wet”.
“Sit anywhere you like,” said Ziggy, who we were glad to see is out of prison and making an honest living at the Barksdale.
Wire bits aside, the Barksdale proved most excellent. We all ordered some form of eggs, ham, and grits. The ham was the star, clinging to a big fat bone, and cooked to a crispness one step before it could be considered bacon.
“Wow!” exclaimed Nicole, as heard on the single “Wow Wave Cinema”. From here on out, she would channel ham when we performing that song.
Austin is a long way from Memphis. Too long really. Obama should do something about that. Arkansas happened for several hours, and we finally saw another band on the road to SXSW. We gave each other the bike messenger nod, and continued on the road to fame, fortune, and bubble baths.
At a Texas truck stop, Nicole spotted a plastic bottle filled with lacey underwear. Champanties. It was covered in dust and showing signs of jaundice. Along the highway, we passed Gun Zone, which is like a Lazer Tag but with real bullets. And at a rural gas station, Jim and I were ceremoniously announced as faggots by a couple of mouth breathers sitting in the bed of a pick up truck. Nicole didn’t fare much better, getting immediately whistled at from an unknown source. The name of the town was Cumby, which is Texan for “cum-stained Gumby”.
We stopped in Dallas to find the grassy knoll. It’s still there, along with the book depository building. The knoll was a bit spooky, and a little rapey after dark. I thought we would see lots of people posing with umbrellas, like walking across Abbey Road. But no, just joggers, strollers, and the morbidly curious. Jim documented it with his 90’s Super8 camcorder, which has been catching random video snippets of the tour.
Sonny Bryan’s was on the list for dinner, but when we arrived the sign said CLOSED OUT OF FOOD. Bummer. That shack smelled like BBQ crack. We opted for a Cracker Barrel between Dallas and Waco. When in Rome.
For the final leg of the twelve-hour drive, Jim played a virtual reality video game called Anxiety Driving Battle 2012. The goal is to get to Austin as fast as possible. All other motorists and mosquitoes are your enemies, and Mr. Bungle provides the soundtrack. But we made it to Austin in one piece, and our gracious hosts Dimitri and Cassandra welcomed us into their peaceful abode, where cold Lone Stars and warm 312’s were inhaled with relief.