I am the 4 percent. …The 4 percent that T Mobile and AT&T and most other carriers do not cover. Apparently “adventure-travel-writer-nomad” is not in their set of target demographics. Because once I left Boston and drove towards Maine, and until major cities (and only major cities) on the west coast, I had, at best, spotty zero-g coverage. So no phone or internet. So no posting blogs.
I have LOTS to tell you. I’ve been lots of places, and haven’t been able to post about them. Which is a good thing, I think.
I’m currently in L.A., about to start heading east. I’ve hit all four corners of America. I’ll be going through the desert shortly, and when I get to Austin I’ll start catching up.
But yeah, one thing they don’t always specify in the step-by-step instruction booklet for wanderers (which doesn’t exist, so I’m writing it, at least the first paragraph), that thing to be footnoted on every page, is this basic premise…a foundational assumption of the wilderness that we know but always forget or try to deny:
“Lesson 1 — If you go into the wilderness, your phone magically turns into a brick. Yes, there are air cards and things like that, but they all suck in the wilderness. So leave your phone behind with your fucking kakhis, power lunches and professionalist bullshit. The wilderness does not care about your image, your ‘platform’ or audience satisfaction, or your mother’s concerns for your wellbeing. If you want to go into the wilderness, go. But don’t whine about not being able to contact your clients or pitch editors or update Facebook. You will get frustrated and possibly depressed about your relative social-web isolation, especially if you try to combat it. So give up. This is your time to become a caveman. A wild motherfucker who wears nothing but a loincloth and squats to shit and wipes with rough leaves and pisses on everything to mark his territory and kills baby deer and eats their eyeballs. This is not your time to call your girlfriend or post a pic to FB or tweet with “#ilovethewilderness” hashtags. So don’t. Just…don’t. #wildernesswins.”