No more ridin’ along in my automobile

Zac Reicks

I finally made up my mind early this week. Driving to a third bowl game in a row is a stupid idea.

This Dec. 31, when Iowa State takes on Boise State in the Humanitarian Bowl, I will be one fan who will not be fatigued from a 20-some hour drive.

There will be no snowy roads, no mountain ascents, no falling asleep at 4 a.m. and most certainly none of the smells from my buddies who wanted to eat at Taco Bell three times in a eight-hour period.

Reminiscing, I remember driving to games in Ohio, Texas, Nebraska, Missouri, Arizona, Louisiana and Colorado twice, all for the glory of Cyclone football.

I have eaten 10-cent wings with an old woman in Denton, Texas, and then hugged her when the Bears shocked the 49ers last year. I have heard a homeless guy tell how he had college degrees in underwater welding and computers while my cousin bought him lunch in Arizona, even though he would have gone to school in the 1960s or 1970s.

I have seen snow in New Mexico, the worst dancer of all time at Texas A&M (Brit, you know who you are) and a sorority girl believe that my friend was Freddie Prinze Jr.’s catcher in the movie “Summer Catch.”

Through my vast experiences, I have learned that the best way to get through long car rides is sleep, and sleep alone. It can make an 11-hour trip seem like four, and let you feel refreshed and ready for a fun vacation.

Sleeping is a natural talent: you either have it or you don’t. My friend Jamie is one of the best car sleepers I have ever seen. Like your grandpa after a big meal, he will fall asleep as soon as he enters a car. For some people, it is not acceptable to have anyone sleep in the car. They feel that if one person has to stay awake, everyone has to stay awake. To those people I say, “Try riding through Nebraska.”

Then there are those who can’t fall asleep in a car no matter how tired they are. My cousin Josh has accompanied Jamie and me on many of those trips, and he can’t fall asleep to save his life. Twisting and turning in the back seat and grunting like a warthog, he will lay there wide awake no matter how deprived of slumber he is. Only Hardee’s breakfast and a good Mafia novel keep his sanity intact.

However, these types of people are great for a long car ride, because they handle the toughest stretches of driving. Watching someone navigate the foggy Arizona interstate while driving with glasses that are six years old is no small feat. Couple that with the fact that we were going 95 miles per hour, and still managed to come away unscathed, and it is nothing short of a miracle.

So, after all those miles traveled on the lonely road, I am ready to trade it for the comfort of scrunched airplane seats and bad food. Besides that, if you get sick you get those nice little paper bags that are supposed to contain the potential byproducts of your sickness. And the only time I ever flew to a sporting event, I missed a connecting flight and our plane almost ran out of fuel.

Hmm, maybe gassing up the car for one last run doesn’t sound so bad after all.

Zac Reicks

is a senior in journalism

and mass communication from Lawler. He is a sports editor for the Daily.