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A Trip Across Highway 66, Sunshine State Style

LongRoofian August 27, 2013 All Things Hoon

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So this olelongrooffan has shared with my fellow Hoons that I inflict more than a one thousand miles per week on my newish minilongroof (this week past it was 1,396). It often has been accomplished while traveling in the far left lane on Eisenhower’s Highway System down here in Central and South Florida. During those experiences, it was hard for this olelongrooffan to stop and smell the exhaust fumes as it is truly a concrete jungle. Recently however the need for those left lane excursions have ceased to be necessary and this olelongrooffan is able to travel on “surface” highways and, indeed, stop and smell the exhaust fumes. Well, my fellow Hoons, this olelongrooffan has previously shared something pretty dang cool with all ya’all and today I thought I might share with you some of the other cool stuff I saw on one of those “off the Eisenhower Highway System” road trips. Oh yeah, 497 miles that day alone. Be prepared, my fellow Hoons, this is another of this olelongrooffan’s usual long white beard, rambling all over the place kind of posts.

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One of the most challenging aspects of my new gig is managing repairs and warranty service (squeaky stairs) on new homes a three and a half hour drive away. Some unknown painter over in Sarasota decided to utilize our installed tread plate as the platform for one end of his/her scaffold plank while touching up some paint above our staircase. Well kids, a 3/4″ piece of poplar wood overhanging the upper deck one inch is not ever gonna support the weight of that huge pine plank plus the weight of said painter. Our poplar gave way and needed repairs. This olelongrooffan only hopes that when our poplar failed and that plank fell to the lower stairwell, that painter was not injured.

So my decision was to detour one of our, expensive when they are out of town, crews on the way to an installation in the home of the Bucs to head south and perform a simple bar clamp and Elmer’s glue repair or for this oleconstruction worker to head over there, check out the status of the homes we were installing there and perform that repair my own d*mn self. As my 90 day review is coming up next week, I chose the cheaper alternative. Plus, I found that cool *ss GMCMH shop on this very same trip.

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As this olelongrooffan was heading north by northwest on Florida’s Highway 710, I passed by the Palm Beach International Raceway. I have yet to attend an event out there but I am sure I will be doing so soon. I just haven’t gotten into the drift scene and straight line racing as much as I probably should. They do have a road course out there at which I attended an SCCA event about twenty years ago to watch a buddy Hoon around his VW Golf racecar. Just know it’s on my Hoonket List.

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As I was passing through the hometown of that GMC motorhome shop, I also passed by a field with the most John Deere tractors I have seen assembled in one location, ever. And they all were identical looking. I know there is a strong agriculture presence here in south central Florida but, dang, to me that’s a lot of freaking tractors.

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An hour or so later, I passed by the historic Sebring International Raceway. I have attended a few 12 Hours of Sebring Races at this venue and had a total blast doing so. One time when I attended one of them with my buddy, Dr. Dudley (he is the self proclaimed Doctor of Love), we tent camped out overnite and the next morning when we awoke, the place was deserted with the exception of our group of four or five tents. The entire facility was blanketed in fog while we campfire cooked our breakfast and broke camp to head back to reality. Upon leaving, the fog had somewhat lifted but long distance siting was still impaired. Once we loaded our possessions in my 1988 Cadillac Fleetwood D’Elegance (my then wife referred to it as another “one of my toys”—did I mention “then wife?”) and started to head out, we passed through an open gate to cross the track to exit. As we crossed that race course roadway, this olelongrooffan looked over at the good Doctor, started laughing my *ss off, hung a left, I floored that 4.9 liter Caddy and drove onto that track passing by our remaining buddies still breaking camp, laughing all the way. We traveled probably 2,000 feet to the next open gate and promptly got the hell out of Dodge. We all still laugh about that to this day.

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Sometime, somewhere that day, I spotted this race boat. I am pretty sure it was next door to the GMC shop but, alas, short term memory is sketchy at times for this olelongrooffan.

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As this olelongrooffan was cruising across the state that day I spotted a sign directing me to Desoto City. As i didn’t really have the time for a major detour, this is as close as I got to Desoto City that day. I am quite sure another time I’m gonna head that way. Hopefully, I’ll find a whole dang bunch of Desotos to share with my fellow Hoons.

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Just outside one of the developments we are installing stairs and rails in, I saw this huge *ssed pickemup truck abandoned on the side of the road. Unless these are designated for towing something, I really don’t get them.

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And in some urban area that escapes my mind, I spotted this doctor’s office and found its name amusing. Yeah, my fellow Hoons, always looking out for strange and unusual places and things to help this olelongrooffan Celebrate Life.

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While stopped for refueling at some location in the interior regions of the Sunshine State, I spotted this attached to the side of a conversion van. Apparently this thing measures the retroreflectivity of pavement markings. Just that word alone reminds me of that video that circled around a few years ago by some engineer talking about something that didn’t even exist, but he used a tona big words to describe. I am confident a large majority of my fellow Hoons have seen it. If so, post it in the comments so the minority can enjoy it also.

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Just beyond that retroreflectivity meter, in the Travel Center next door, I spotted this olestreetrod in transport to places unknown. 

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As I was heading back to my Miami Beach style bungalow, I passed by Lake Okeechobee. It is difficult to imagine the scale of this lake without having seen it in person. The far shoreline cannot even be seen, it is that vast. Gorgeous.

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As I was heading east on Federal Highway 98 just north of the Everglades, there are nothing but sugar fields as far as the eye can see.

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The only exception to this were all of these transplanted palm trees in a row. I looked over to the north and 

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this is what those trees were lining the roadway to. Yeah, it’s a huge *ss sugar processing plant processing the sweetness we Amuricans seem to consume almost in excess. Twas the first time I had seen one so I thought it was pretty cool. Probably as close to one as I will get. And that is okay with this olelongrooffan, not enough wheels there for me.

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And this olelongrooffan is not making this up, I’m not creative enough for that. I was cruising across Florida’s Highway 66 when I spotted these out of the passenger window of my minilongroof. The last time I remember seeing a drumsticks attached to a live bird was when this olelongrooffan was at thehorsefarmer’s version of Haven Lee Farm many moons ago. I drove along and then decided to whip a Ueee and head back to capture this image. I am, honest to God, stopped on the shoulder of the opposite lane of that highway, traffic was that sparse on that weekday afternoon, and grabbed this image to share with my fellow urban Hoons a small aspect of rural central Florida living. It was interesting. Two of the hens started to flee while I was stopped but the rooster just stood his ground as if daring this olelongrooffan to come at them. Yeah, life is pretty cool, at least to this olelongrooffan,  when a moment is taken to stop and smell the exhaust fumes.

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While I was out there in the middle of sugar field overdose, I spotted this sign. It fondly brought back a memory of when I was visiting my daughter, TheSmartOne, up in the greater Washington, D.C. area when she lived there for a portion of her life. At the time, the country song, “Do you think my tractor’s sexy?” was popular and it was on the jukebox in one of my E30 oleragtops as she and I spotted one of these signs. TheSmartOne, about great for 8 or fine for 9 at the time, looked over at her old man and said, “Dad, anything you drive is sexy.” I love that college attending girl woman and her sense of the moment.

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 But this olelongrooffan does have this to say about that. Even though I am behind the wheel of my minilongroof most of my work week, thanks to modern technology and a great staff, this olelongrooffan is able to take a moment to enjoy what God and nature provide.

I only hope my fellow Hoons are able to do the same.

All Images: ©2013 Hooniverse/longrooffan, All Rights Reserved

Currently there are "13 comments" on this Article:

  1. rwb says:

    Great post. Meandering stories are good when they go to the right places.

    I think you're thinking of the turbo encabulator: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ac7G7xOG2Ag

  2. tomleemo says:

    Great job of taking a dash across the sunshine state and making it a rambling rose of a tale.
    Thanks for coming back. Desoto City is full of Desotos so I'm told.

    Maybe some day I'll make it there and find out forsure.

    Good job tom

  3. Van_Sarockin says:

    Hutch, I'd like you to meet my girl, Credenza.

  4. stigshift says:

    Your posts make me wish I could grow a long white rambling beard.

  5. RegalRegalia says:

    Is this it Longroofian?
    Turbo Encabulator http://www.youtube.com/watch?list=RD02rLDgQg6bq7o

  6. busplunge says:

    Reading LRF's posts are a lot like listening to Arlo Guthrie's "Alice's Restaurant" — There's a story in there and getting to it is half the fun.

    Always enjoy reading your stuff.

    BTW, yesterday in used bookstore I picked up a copy of "The Catholic Church in Southern Missouri" — The Gentleman Farmer is mentioned frequently with photos to back it up. Down at the "B's Nest" I have a typed manuscript of his treatise on the diocese upon which this book is based.

    In case you hooniverse readers are interested, The Gentleman Farmer was a newspaper publisher, editor and author of quite a few books– His stylistic influences are evident in both LRF's writings and my own.

  7. Maxichamp says:

    LRF: Did that thing arrive yet?

  8. Alff says:

    LRF – Kudos to you for having and applying the manual skills that are outside of your job description. It's something that was once commonplace but seems to be on the wane. I'm trying to raise a house of kids to have that same philosophy – and abilities.

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