Saturday, August 6, 2011

"Vacation" 1983

National Lampoon's Vacation (20th Anniversary Special Edition)

Clark: I think you're all f**ked in the head. We're ten hours from the f**king fun park and you want to bail out. Well I'll tell you something. This is no longer a vacation. It's a quest. It's a quest for fun. I'm gonna have fun and you're gonna have fun. We're all gonna have so much f**king fun we'll need plastic surgeory to remove our godamn smiles. You'll be whistling 'Zip-A-Dee Doo-Dah' out of you're a$$holes! I gotta be crazy! I'm on a pilgrimage to see a moose. Praise Marty Moose! Holy $hit!
Rusty Griswold: [Grab's Clark’s shoulder] Dad, you wan an Asprin?

I am going on a road trip today, so this will be a quick post. But I want to keep up my daily post! This is my goal. And what better goal to have than perhaps, WALLY WORLD! America’s Favorite Family Fun Park. “The Moose out front shoulda told ya!”

This movie takes me back to a road trip we took from Iowa to Utah in the summer of 1979. We had the family truckster. It was a big black station wagon and yes it had wood paneling on the sides. Somehow we crammed five kids, two parents and enough luggage to last two weeks and set off at three in the morning.

My dad loved leaving in the middle of the night. He claimed to do it to miss traffic. As a parent, I am sure the prospect of driving several hours with everyone still sleeping and not asking how long until we get out of Nebraska, was even better. But Nebraska is a BORING state to cross. It seems to take a thousand years. We had packed snacks in the car. No roadside diners for us. We had cans of warm Pepsi, ham sandwiches and trail mix. Something about this combination of food managed to cause the most horrendous flatulence that ever existed. Compounded by the fact that the car didn’t have air conditioning in the height of summer made for a cacophony of smells from the backseat.

I can still see my feet sticking out the back window. It remains the quintessential trip of my childhood. Within a few years my older sisters were out of the house and we sold the station wagon. It was the only trip we took as a complete family unit. And “Vacation” caught all the elements. The crazy roadside stands, the relatives you have to visit and the insanity that overtakes you after two weeks in the car.

We didn’t have an Aunt Edna or a kill a dog. It was standing by a windmill and getting your picture taken. It was seeing who could stand in a freezing mountain stream for the longest. It was camping in the mountains and being ignored by your teenage cousins. It was getting lost with Uncle Wrongway who claimed that you needed to see these old warehouses on the way to the Great Salt Lake.

We didn’t go to Wally World, but it was a great adventure.

Mom took the picture!

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