Road Trippin' with Ed and Hank (10)
I'm tellin' y'all... tha' man's insane...
Usually these road trips can stand alone, but this one will make (a little) more sense if you've read Road Trippin' 9 first. P.S. Title by Ed.
Hank told their story to Annie Proulx. Jack and Ennis are all hers. Ed and Hank belong only to each other. Rating:
Money will buy you a dog, but it won't make him wag his tail. Comments:
Always appreciated.Road Trippin' 9 is here:http://myeyesaintblue.livejournal.com/32355.html
Everything else is here:
My baby thinks
he's I'm a...
...? Did you say 'train
"Yeah... Sign said somethin' 'bout a train.
'S right on the way..."
"Right on the way ta where
wherever it is we're goin'."
"Okay... Ya wanna go see some dumbass train...
we'll go see some dumbass train."
"Sure is a helluva lot dryer on this end a the Columbia River..."
"Yep. Reminds me a lot more a home...
'Cept fer tha' big ol' river a course."
"Turn here, Ed."
"How far is it?"
"Sign said it were only two miles...
"Guess tha'd be it then."
"Jeez... So... whadya s'pose tha' train ever did ta anyone
tha' they got it all penned up like tha'?"
Hard ta 'magine the crime fittin' the punishment."
"Or maybe it's the other way 'round...
Maybe someone thinks they're protectin' it."
"Cain't hardly 'magine no one makin' off with it."
"Or gettin' too far if'n they did."
"Maybe they wanna keep it outta the rain?"
"Don' hardly think a l'il rain would hurt it... 'S a train
'Sides... Think we're in one a them rain shadows here. Ya know...
where the mountains block most a the rain. 'N snow too."
"Maybe they're 'fraid someone'll vandalize it...
...cover it with graffiti or somethin'."
"If'n ya really wanted ta get at it...
ain't like tha' fence'd stop ya or even slow ya down too much."
"Bet them folks tha' built this don' even know wha' they're tryin' ta protect it from.
Jus' figure it's gotta be a whole lot safer bein' caged up like tha'
'cause ya jus' never know wha' migh' happen...
Sure as hell ain't no way ta live..."
"Uh... Are we still talkin' 'bout tha' train...?"
"Whaddya think it'd take ta tear tha' cage down?
Bet it wouldn' take all tha' much if'n some folks got ta gether...
Boy... I'd sure as hell like ta tear tha' down..."
"Maybe we better get goin', Hank..."
"Hey... Look, Ed...
They even got a vicious guard dog."
"Yeah... Real vicious... C'mere, fella...
Tha's a good boy... Ya wan' yer tummy rubbed, huh?
Yer 'bout as shameless as 'nother fella I know."
"Sure does look like a purty powerful piece a equipment, don' it Ed?
Sure would like ta see it set free. See jus' what it could do."
...Ya wanna chase this here stick, fella...?"
"Mus' be made a iron."
...Go on... go get tha' stick, fella..."
"Can jus' 'magine tha' thing workin' up a good ol' head a steam."
...Don' go tha' way, dumbass...
Stick's over thata way..."
"'N sure looks like tha' were a real tight squeeze."
...Don' think he understands the game a fetch too good."
"Bet some fellas musta worked up a real good sweat...
gettin' it in there like tha'."
"Reckon it weren't easy.
...Boy... I sure do miss them dogs."
"Prob'bly had ta grease it up purty thorough-like 'fore they..."
"Don' take much... does it?"
"Well it took you
a fair 'mount a time ta catch on."
"Tha's on account a yer one track mind is startin' ta wear me out."
Didn' hear ya complainin' the other nigh'.
Heard ya moanin quite a bit... But I don' recall ya complainin'..."
"Nope. I ain't complainin'... Jus' runnin' outta steam."
"You seen tha' Major fella 'round anywheres...?
Maybe he's got some steam left..."
"'Fraid the Major's kinda wore out too...
But if'n it were some kinda national 'mergency
I bet he'd be more 'n willin' ta give ya anythin' he's got left..."
"'S a 'mergency alrigh'...
Got me a big ol' fire tha' needs puttin' out."
"Too bad... Guess ya forgot...
the man's a astronaut
... not a fireman."
. Oh well...
Wha' I really need is one a them engineers anyways.
Someone who knows how ta drive tha' train real good 'n real fast 'n real..."
"Couldn' tha' school bus driver handle tha'?
Drivin' a big ol' train cain't be all tha' diff'rent from drivin' a big ol' bus.
'N I bet the Major'd be more 'n willin' ta ride shotgun again."
"Guess he could...
But I think maybe tha' bus driver mighta had his heart set
on ridin' shotgun his self..."
"Well... Know 'm gonna regret tellin' ya this...
But I think tha' Major mighta took a class or two 'n engineerin'...
'fore he decided fer sure on astronautin' 'n all..."
"Ya don' say?"
"I do say."
"He get good grades?"
"Well... He don' like ta brag... but...
the man had his self a solid C average."
"Good 'nough fer me."
"'Course you 'n him don' really got nowheres private-like ta go...
So's I guess yer jus' gonna hafta wait 'til later ta hop 'board tha' there train."
"'N maybe by then he'll be able
ta build up some a tha' there steam again."
"Hey, Ed... Wha' 'bout tha'
Maybe we could use tha'? It'd be kinda like tha' mile high club...
only fer folks tha' cain't afford ta fly...
"Think ya fin'lly lost yer ever-lovin' mind, Hank."
"'Tha' a 'yes' or a "no" then?"
"Wha' the hell do you think, dumbass?"
"'M guessin' tha's a 'no'."
"Or maybe tha's a 'yes
"'M leavin', Hank..."
"Nope. I guess tha's definitely a 'no'.
Better add tha' ta tha' there list a stuff ya won' do.
Hey... Wait up, Ed... You wouldn' really leave withou' me...
"Anythin' fer love...
Oh, Ed would do anythin' fer love...
he would do anythin' fer love...
But he won't do that.
Oh, he won't do that.
Ed would do anythin' fer love...
Anythin' I been dreamin' of...
But he jus' won't do that.
No, he won't do that."
---A few minutes later...
ya'd come back fer me...
"Get in, dumbass."
"I were startin' ta get bored
sittin' there singin' all by ma self...
Funny... tha' dog ran 'way fer some reason..."
"Yer jus' lucky I came back 'fore they took
"So... ya missed me, huh?"
"Then why'd ya come back fer me?"
"I didn' wanna...
Tha' Major made me do it."
"He did, huh?"
"Yep. Ain't no 'xplainin' it...
But I think he's righ' fond a ya."
"He is, huh?"
Jus' 'tween you 'n me...
I think the man's as crazy as you are.
Maybe crazier even."
"Well... tell him I'm righ' fond a him too.
Guess we're jus' two crazy dumbasses in love."
"Tha's fer damn sure... Especially tha' crazy part...
Hey... Maybe I should drop the two a you off at tha' there nuthouse.
"Sorry ta disappoint ya...
Tha' ain't no nuthouse... 'S a museum."
"Looks like a nuthouse.
Ain't never a nuthouse 'round when ya need one."
"Ain't s'posed ta call 'em nuthouses no more."
"Ain't never a loony bin 'round when ya need one."
"Yeah... Tha's a whole lot better, dumbass..."
"Ya ain't gonna drag me 'round no dumbass museum, are ya?"
"No. On accounta a yer ankle's still botherin' ya.
But... would'n be so terrible
"Sure would. Musty ol' museum.
Fulla a buncha stuff I don' understand."
"Don' matter if'n ya understand it or not...
Jus' matters if'n ya like it. Or not.
Ya don' gotta like it."
"Well, I won' like it.
So's there's no point in goin'."
"How the hell da ya know ya won' like it
'fore ya even look at it?"
"Still think ya gotta give it a chance
'fore ya jus' turn yer nose up at it like tha'."
"Tha' mean ya got other museums in mind?"
"Don' wanna go ta no stuffy ol' museums.
Swear ta me tha' ya ain't takin' me ta no museums..."
"Ya actually wan' me ta swear ta it...
I, Hank Jones,
bein' a sound mind 'n body..."
"Wait a minute...
Ain't no denyin' yer body's sound. Real sound...
but I ain't so sure 'bout yer mind..."
"Fine... I, Hank Jones,
bein' a poss'bly unsound mind 'n real sound body
do hereby swear tha' I won' take Ed Smith
ta any stuffy old museums.
There... Ya satisfied?"
Could ya write it out 'n sign it, maybe?"
"Think yer righ', Ed...
Think tha' Major jus' migh' be crazier than me."
A few miles later....
"Hey lookit tha', Ed...
There's one a them trains in the wild... Musta busted clean outta it's cage.
Don't it look a lot better runnin' free like tha'?"
"It's jus' tha'..."
"Gettin' outta tha' there cage...
It ain't near as easy as ya migh' think..."
"Ed... I didn' mean it tha' way... Weren't talkin' 'bout you..."
"Ya absolutely sure 'bout tha'?"
"Yeah... 'M sure 'bout tha'.
I don' think a ya as all caged up like tha'..."
"Well it sure as hell seems like ya think a me tha' way..."
"I don't Ed...
Not like tha' anyways...
Not so... uh... Think maybe it's more like...
More like we live... I dunno... not 'xactly in a cage...
but kinda shut away-like... like some a them there monks do...
Ain't like we ain't free ta leave... but we do our best ta keep other folks out."
Ya gotta be kiddin' me..."
"Maybe tha' ain't the best 'xample..."
"'Course only God knows wha' them monks are up ta..."
Guess it's more like we got ourselves
all holed up in... I dunno... some kinda private Shangri-La..."
"Yeah... like in tha' ol' movie... I think it were called 'Lost Horizon'.
Remember...? Iris sent us a copy."
"Yeah... I remember it...
But our ranch seems a l'il too hot 'n dusty fer Shangri-La.
'N the barn don' always smell as nice as a Shangri-La should neither.
Guess we got us one a them low-rent Shangri-La's."
"Ya know damn well wha' I mean, dumbass...
'N tha's fine most a the time... Stayin' cut off from the world like we do.
But sometimes... sometimes it just don' seem real...
'n I wanna drag ya out inta the world...
Jus' fer a l'il while anyways."
"Don' think tha' went too well in tha' movie.
Remember...? Tha' fella tried ta take tha' woman with him
'n she up 'n died on him on account a leavin'...
'N then he went nuts 'n killed his self."
"'N didn' the hero... tha' fella's brother...
end up goin' back ta Shangri-La in the end...
'cause he realized leavin' were a real big mistake?"
"Yeah... Guess he did."
"So's maybe we should think 'bout headin' back home
'fore I turn inta a pillar a salt or somethin'..."
"Think tha's an entirley diff'rent story.
'Sides... if'n ya were gonna turn inta a pillar a salt
ya prob'bly woulda done it by now."
You sayin' it's still a poss'bility?"
"Nice try, dumbass.
But we ain't goin' home yet."
"Don' go givin me tha'
'poor me, I ain't never gonna see home again' crap.
Know damn well yer havin' a good time."
"Guess I do kinda like bein' drug 'round 'gainst my will...
Enjoy bitchin' 'n moanin' 'bout it."
"Tell me 'bout it..."
"Be glad to..."
"Wait a minute... On second thought...
Let's jus' turn on the radio..."
"Hey... This here's an old one...
Sing 'long with me, Ed..."
"Don' know the words."
"Mama, I found someone like you said would come along
Hes a sight, so unlike any man I've known
I was afraid to let him in 'cause I'm not the trustin' kind
But now I'm convinced that he's heaven sent
And must be out of his mind..."
"Bet ya know the words ta the chorus..."
"Mama, he's crazy. Crazy over me
And in my life is where he says he always wants to be
I've never been so loved, he beats all I've ever seen
Mama, he's crazy. He's crazy over me"
"I am, ya know..."
"Yeah. I know.
'N me too, Ed. Over you."
A few more miles down the road...
"Before... When ya were playin' with tha' dog...
Did you call me 'shameless'?"
"Yep. Ya got a problem with tha'?"
"Nope. 'M righ' proud a it. But... How 'bout you, Ed...?
You got a problem with it?"
"Nope. 'S one a yer best qualities."
"It is, huh?"
"Wha' 'bout when I maybe go a l'il too far fer ya?"
"Jus' figure yer gonna ev'ry now 'n again...
'S ta be 'xpected... wha' with you bein' shameless 'n all."
"Sign says there's a campground... few miles thata way...
Ya wanna go see just how shameless I can be...?"
"'S awful hot, Hank... 'N 'fraid I really am wore out.
Ain't been sleepin' too good..."
"'S alrigh'... All the more reason ta stop.
We'll see if'n we can find a purty spot in the shade.
Set up the tent this time... It'll be nice 'n cool 'n we can take a long nap.
Breeze blowin' over us... Ain't gotta do nothin' but rest up.
"Guess tha' does sound real nice.
Let's go 'n take a look..."
And sometime after that...
"This is real nice Hank."
"Well it would be if'n ya'd put them shoes a yers
outside the tent."
"Hey... Watcha doin', Ed?"
"Whadya think 'm doin', dumbass?
Jeez... now who's the one tha's slow ta catch on...?
Ya got yer ticket? Train's leavin' fer Shangri-La in a few minutes.
You'll be able ta get on board real soon..."
Wait a minute... We don' hafta...
Ya really need ta get yer self some sleep."
"'S a engineer's duty ta live by tha' motto... Ya know...
Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat,
nor runnin' outta steam..."
"Think tha's fer mailmen..."
"Ya absolutely sure 'bout tha'?"
'M gonna take a nap...
Hold on ta tha' there ticket though...
You can take the next train ta tha' there Shangri-La..."
"Ya know somethin', Ed...?
Think we migh' already be there."
"Yeah... Guess we are at tha'.
'Course it's definitely one a them low-rent Shangri-La's...
Wha' with all the campin' 'n the bugs 'n whatnot...
'N I ain't hardly seen a piece a pie."
"How 'bout we try 'n find some pie tomorrow?"
"Won' get no argument from me.
Love ya, dumbass..."
"Love you too, dumbass.."
"...Love ya so damn much it hurts sometimes."
Didya say somethin's hurtin' ya, Hank?"
"'M fine, Ed... Didn' mean ta wake ya...
Go on back ta sleep."