“Somebody’s always got to be on the job because there’s always a job out there to do.” -Gil Scott-Heron
My consciousness is on full tilt this glamorous morning at East Bank Campground. The side effect of which is a monster headache. Like a weekend bender sort of headache. It’s actually a hydration issue. I got caught up in bike mechanics last night and didn’t drink nearly enough water. My head is pounding. I run through my cures: coffee, massive water intake, food, exercise, toothbrushing. None of it helps. I struggle through it and try to enjoy the campground oatmeal in front of me. What a wonderful campground this is. Shoutout to the US Army Corp of Engineers. And to the campground attendant and his “FBI (firm believer in) Jesus hat. He was a very nice man and I got no problem with his love of Yeshua, but couldn’t anyone put FBI in front of anything and make it work? FBI satanism, FBI necrophilia… the list is endless on how far one could take it. And for that it should not be allowed. No thank you. Damon is complimenting the campground bathrooms. The same one I took a massive a shit in — well before sunrise. Handicapped stall too. Thank god for handicapped people, they allow for gigantic sized spaces and so I get this massive shitter all to myself. It feels like an HGTV show or something.
The sun comes up and I’m popping ibuprofen into my tricked-out oatmeal as Damon explains how he just in there with “an expressive shitter” next to him, in the smaller non-handicapped stall. Damon uses the words emotive; tells me about all sorts grunts and groans. I don’t know why.
My slow leak issue is not resolved. It’s hottern hell. You’re gonna notice less words and less polishing because I’m doing a lot more work right now. The every ten mile pump up is now every six or seven miles. We cruise south through Chatahoochie. The town not the song. Also, no hoochies with whom to chat.
We leave the 90 for most of the day, making our way to Tallahassee on rural roads. It’s a nice safe haven from noise. My headache appreciates it. My slow leak too. My body is feeling on point but my mind is not. I haven’t found anything in my tire and have no idea why I keep going flat and it’s fucking with me. It makes it harder to ride too. I can’t keep checking and I can only implement the simplest, most direct solution in front of me: 100 pumps. Ride for an hour or so, repeat. Yup, that’s what I’m doing.
Fifty some miles later and we’re coming into Florida’s Capitol. I find a bike shop. $10 later and all my concerns are gone. They find the wire I could not. Maybe I’ve lost my mind due to dehydration but I seriously checked it over and over and over again. Time and again. The last two days. I don’t wanna think too much about it. I’m just ecstatic for resolution. I talk touring with the guys in the shop for a bit. Thanks University Bicycle. Damon books a cheap motel because our bike only camping fell though. Thanks Damon.
The heat is on, Steve Frye. Ferreals though. Damn near 90° F. I’m chilling outside of a very unique-to-Florida store slash taproom combination place we just happened upon. I’m not really chilling, cause it’s hot. There’s a patio. There’s also two TVs on the patio for me to ignore. Here we are. Tallahassee. Florida State University. What I can’t ignore is the spring break scenery going around this little Florida State campus strip of bars and restaurants. I’m talking about women younger than I am. Too young probably. Maybe. Age ain’t real. Time doesn’t exist and time travel is only a Hollywood hoax. So maybe not. Yeah, not at all. But yeah, the scenery is popping and it pairs perfectly with this refreshing Belgian trippel I’m idulging in after a long and hot and hard day on the bike. Butts in jean shorts galore. Also short black tight dresses. Literally that’s the dress code. And it’s strict. One after another. Thank you America. Or Jesus. Or whoever. Damon knows what I’m typing and chimes in “I shoulda went to Florida state. What the fuck was I thinking bro.”
We finish the beers and head up the block only to find the actual corner bar we were originally heading to is a absolutely mobbed with twenty one and twenty two year olds. A massive amount of people, on some “I’ll take two covid nineteens to go, please” shit. I’m fairly certain Harmony Korinne is filming this scene. Or that he already has and Now I’m looking for James Franco or Selena Gomes. Instead, I come back to the reality where Damon and I eat an entire vegan pizza. Plus another beer, which is really like a salad. And also I have a salad, which is nothing like a beer. It all equals sleeping.