Minnesota to Vancouver: The Drive

inside my eyes

so let’s talk about the ride from minnesota to vancouver. this ride is a bitch and takes 2 days. at least it’s not through a bunch of mountains like the ride from portland to san fran is. that in my opinion is the toughest drive just because of all the mountains. it’s actually scary at times if there’s bad weather. but anyway, this ride is just long, that’s it…easy though. so far it’s been great because only tommy, mariqueen and myself are driving. the rest of the guys took the tour bus. then main thing i like about not being on the tour bus is that we get to decide our own schedule – that’s always good because we need to be flex and just wing it. i’ve been able to get a bunch of work done answering emails and writing blog stuff. mariqueen has become quite the photojournalist on this little trip. she took like over 100 nature pics (all the ones posted) while hanging out of the widow. north dakota was pretty cool to drive – lots of beautiful land. last night at a rest stop i stepped in what i thought was water but it turned out to be some combination of baby shit and vomit. it was gross – especially when i got in the van and was like “ewww who the fuck stepped in dog shit!” hahah low and behold it was little ol’ me. needless to say we tossed out the rug in the truck and i spent the next 5 minutes rubbing my foot in dirt and grass and pouring water bottle after water bottle on it. mariqueen was nice enough to take pictures of this tender moment.

at the best western this morning in butte i was able to do laundry and check my email at the same time. there are a few things that will make my day. one is being able to get online and the other is clean underwear. that’s a beautiful thing. when you’re on the road your chances to get online are few and far between so you have to take advantage of them immediately. i love my lap top and credit miss click clack mariqueen for convincing me to get the powerbookg4. it is the most user friendly thing in the world. thanx mm. missoula was the best place in montana for sure. we drove into town in the early afternoon and it was perfect. there was a drug store, a best buy, a staples, a post office and a borders all in basically the same block. it was so great – we got food, bought envelopes to mail out some merch, went to the post office and then updated the blog and checked email while we drank some coffee and read about brad and angelina in some rag. it was great.

Mariqueen’s Mind

hello lovelies… i guess it’s time for me to write. again. seriously, i haven’t typed out so many “reports” since college. who knew being in west indian girl was like going back to school? it’s been the coolest tutorial on living. west indian girl university has given me many lessons in understanding, love, music, communication and the advantages of peeing standing up. just don’t ask me to write a report on everything i’ve learned. i’ll be writing for the rest of my life… so ok, i’m supposed to talk about our little road trip, right? here we go…

i guess you can just look back on my minnesota show report under “interesting things after the show” and basically, that’s when and where this whole road trip started. after fergus falls the three musketeers hit the road and we made our way through north dakota. we decided that since we are so awesome we might as well be superheroes. like the fantastic four minus one… the minus one being lewscious who, because of his state of abandonment to the superawesomeherojaegercrew cause, i now dubbed, douche-shus. phonetically spelling, it’s so hot right now… phonetically spelling. tommy’s super human power is that he can drive for long stretches, is able to sleep like a baby in the suburban, and has supreme taste in music… he is the ultimate road dog and traveling companion. fran’s super human power is that he can also drive for long stretches, he can multi-task, he can eat anything he wants and can shit it out that same night and he never runs out of things to talk about. my super human powers are my abilities to stick my head out the window and capturing photographs of the environment with a digital camera while traveling at speeds of up to eighty miles an hour and still having the best and most low maintenance, most effortless hair out of everyone. my other super human powers include being able to keep my composure stuck on the road traveling through redneck nation with two boys and having super human lungs because i smoke too much and still sing well. some memorable moments worth mentioning were car dancing with tommy to sleater-kinney and the whole fran stepping in puke and baby doo doo at a rest stop episode. as resident super hero photographer i took some priceless shots of the cleansing of the converse. when we got to our hotel rooms in butte, montana i crashed. hard. i didn’t even wash my face, brush my teeth or take my contacts off. i don’t even know why… i think it was the change in weather… all of a sudden it became a lot colder and i think my body was just reacting to it. i’m pretty sure all the shitty ass food i had to eat had a huge part in my fatigue. god, how do people live off of grease and junk food? it’s tragic.

so today, our second day, which isn’t over yet, (i’m typing this and sitting shotgun while fran is driving and tommy has just woken up from a three hour nap) has been productive. the boys did their laundry… and mine. i must come off like such a diva that can’t do anything for herself, right? i mean seriously, i have people drive me around, carry my bags, pay for my food and do my laundry. i am so rad. come on people, i’m the only female on this crew… i take advantage of my situations. always remember that, kids… make the most of what life offers you. i’d like to state for the record that i don’t force anyone to do anything for me. they just seem to want to, or, my theory is, that they feel obligated to because i don’t have a penis. or… i am so rad. i love my colleagues with all my heart. though they come off like they are my minions at times, they really are my family and my best friends. some of them act like my mother, others like my father, most like the brothers i never had and never wanted… on those rare occasion they are the sisters one could only dream about having… they are the best and i’ll bet you wish you had them in your life. i would if i were you. neener neener neener.

so yeah, on to being productive… so we leave butte fucked, montana and stop at missoula, montana. finally, civilization. there was a walgreens, a best buy, a staples and the piece de resistance, a barnes and noble. i was ecstatic to say the very least. we ate at a wendy’s and then i ran over to walgreens while the boys went off to their respective destinations, i think tommy went to best buy and fran went to staples. i finally got some phone reception and i bought some cigarettes, nail polish remover and the latest issues of vogue and lucky. we all rendezvoused at the barnes and noble where i dropped bombs in the toilets that would make hiroshima shudder. so good. then mr. frantastic bought me a strawberries n creme non coffee frappuccino and internet connection and for about two hours i almost felt like i was home. then we kept on driving and i took more pictures whilst hanging my head out the window and tommy and i danced to bloc party and doves. i was about to introduce him to the gram rabbit album when my poor captain t-ommy got pulled over for doing eighty one in a sixty five zone. that’s bullshit. first of all, all the signs said seventy five and we were going down hill. at least we were now in idaho and the tickets only cost sixty two dollars. we made a bunch of dumb pit stops… you know how i feel about those… and now, here i am sitting here in the suburban, typing this. i’ve actually been banging out show reports for most of the day. i feel nauseous. i think it’s because i’ve been reading and typing too much and i keep eating shitty food. i swear, if i have to eat at another perkins i’m going to puke. ugh… i can’t wait to get to the rest of the band (my hotel room). our destination is set for a place called billingsby, billcosby, billythekidd, billygoatland, billsomething… i don’t know… all i know is, is that there is a queen size bed with my name on it and i get to spend some quality time with the love of my life. meow… oh, powerbook G4… you are so dreamy… i could stare at you for hours… me love you long time.

Tommy’s Two Cents

So it is day two in the suburban with my new road buddies, frantastic and miss mariqueen and we are closing in on seattle, on the way to their Vancouver show…..we are meeting up with the rest of the crew in Bellingham, Washington….at our home away from home, the best western…..the last two days being a blur of excessive driving, great tunes, and greater company……what can i say about this crew….I feel a special connection with each of them…….fran is my merch/music/business mentor, who i respect immensely for his ability to multi-task with an open heart-taking on a million things with poise and wits……….carter is my “scoping the chicks buddy” and another great road companion, always smiling and looking for a good time- i could go on wild excursions through middle america with him anytime……rob has a powerful presence, a zen master of great talent and ability- always calm and always looking to the future with his music……a great source of inspiration……..mark is my partying buddy, and has been my roommate for most of the trip….that guy no matter what is happening good or bad always keeps his cool and is a joy to hang out with…we have a pre-show ritual that i cannot mention- such a remarkable drummer- he makes me smile when i watch him play….and the amazing miss mariqueen- such a great sense of humor- not only can she sing with the best of them, and is probably the hottest female singer around- but so kind hearted and easy going- i could see how her spirit connects the rest of the band, and inspires them to be better……this lady of the road has no inhibitions,-she can hang with the boys and turn every head in the room all at the same time- all the while smiling and digging life …..i’ve never met a band who feeds of each other so well……i came on the road with few expectations- mainly just learning and seeing things i have never seen- little did i know i would meet new friends for life…….i feel blessed and honored to be a part of something so exciting as this- an up and coming band growing together in music and spirit……….

carter, james and lewis on the tour busanother beautiful moment in the van…are we there yet?


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Francis Ten

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08 2005

6 Comments Add Yours ↓

Comments are listed in the order in which they were submitted.

  1. Anonymous #

    A singer and photographer? Mariqueen is there nothing that you can’t do? i know you’ve probably heard this a million times but will you marry me?


  2. Anonymous #

    That’s funny R.James. I heard you say that at your show in Anaheim that someone always asks her that! Do you think that she will say yes one of these times for the hell of it? They could get married on stage. Right MQ? No. You all should check out Tommy’s comments about all of you. Really cool…appreciating each others company on the road especially is so important in a strong musical act. Can’t wait for the Troub and SD shows F-10. We’re packing this bitch tight down in SD on Friday, so bring your A-game ya’ll. Just kidding…have fun though!! Love the agg pics MQ. Keep em comin’


  3. walt #

    Ditto on DH’s comments. Amazing that a band can be so close after such a pain-in-the-ass roadie through the amber waves of grain. Definately good for the soul driving across the states. Stoked on the LA/SD run and let me know if you need help down here. C-ya all tomorrow!

  4. Anonymous #

    These are awesome shots Mariqueen !
    You keep on impressing me all the time !
    Fantastic Road Blogs you guys…
    Something is happening. The tone has changed. Like you’re in a zone of your own now.
    See you tonight at the Troubadour.



  5. Zontobi #

    Mariqueen Im’ma steal your camera.
    Very nice pics. The sky is actually BLUE!

  6. west indian girl #

    james – again, please submit the proper marriage proposal forms first

    doug – dude, tommy’s comments were pretty awesome and the sd show was the best – cant wait to blog about that one. way to make it real – glad you guys brought your A-game

    walt – really, you’re the man

    goldstein – thanx for keepin tabs on us – we have entered the mystical band zone


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