April 30, 2007

The American Dream Book Tour & Protest Across the USA - Dispatch 13

... by Mike Palecek

"Indiana wants me. Lord, I can't go back there." — Jesus

SWEETWATERS COFFEE SHOP THING, ANN ARBOR, MI —Indiana license plates have American flags and "In God We Trust."

Indiana also has more war memorials per square foot than any other state in the union.

There is also Purple Heart Highway and Pearl Harbor Memorial Highway and probably twelve other war highways.

In downtown Indianapolis there is this huge statue memorial: The Soldiers & Sailors Statue in The Circle.

I know because I was there, driving nine times around the circle trying to find my way north on West Street to find Spencer's Bar to meet with the Indianapolis Drinking Liberally group.

Meridian - Right
Right on South
Left on West
McCarty to Delaware, left
Left on East
Right on Washington.

You can't miss it.

I always miss it.

Some Indianans most likely believe that their license plats and the war memorials and church on Sunday and Jesus are somehow connected. Just like some folks believe we landed on the moon and Osama bin Laden made money on put options prior to 9-11, like the guy in Spencer's who gave me directions back to my hotel.

After leaving Spencer's and heading straight on McCarty I stopped at a red light and could see the construction zone for the new stadium for the Indianapolis Colts. There were lights all over and cranes and partial walls. It looked like a set from Waterworld.

It's supposed to bring a lot of business to Spencer's after it's completed.

Well, I have been to Indianapolis and Saginaw, now waiting to go over to The Planet bookstore on North Main Street in Ann Arbor, then it's over to Detroit [Oakland County] for another round of Drinking Liberally.

Ruth called me just as I arrived in Indianapolis, worried after hearing about an accident near South Bend that killed eight people.

"You're not mad about the Days Inn?"


I've been spending a lot of money on motels and gas. About half my stash is already gone.

Anyway. I had a bad time in Indianapolis. My own fault. I drank almost all of Mike Stanek's Czech dark beer gift in one night in Hillsdale, Michigan.

I don't really need to go back to Indianapolis again. Not in this lifetime. Is there a next lifetime? Sometimes I wonder. You wonder about that?

The sun is out. It's been rainy lately.

I peed forty-nine times yesterday. Ruth thinks maybe there's something wrong. You think?

But not once in the car. It was a good day.

In fact yesterday was a great day. I found Saginaw, found The Dawn of a New Day coffee shop and met Ellen, Dawn and Clif.

Clif pulled his Michigan map out of his pocket and showed me exactly where I was, where Bay City is, Ann Arbor and the UP. He showed me where Traverse City is, where he went looking for Bigfoot in the 1970s and found a print.

I also talked about Bigfoot with someone at my signing that evening at Barnes & Noble. I must be getting close to my people.

I really got to sit near the front door of a B&N, at a table, with my books, and a poster saying the author was in the store signing copies of "The American Dream."

I was sitting there for a while when this little girl walks right up to me, looks me in the eyes and says, "I'm a published author, too."

Awesome. What is your name?


What is your book about?

"My cat."

Are you writing another book?

"Yes, about my other cat."

Very cool person this Delaney.

After that I read at the 303 Collective, a progressive visual and performing arts space in Old Town, Saginaw.

I walked in and it was kind of dark, candles every-effing-where, and somebody up on stage reading poetry — and there were people in the seats.

Afterward I met lots of great people, some fellow 9-11 Truthers, lots of young people. They shook my hand and smiled and that means a lot, just like meeting Delaney.

The 303 Collective — and particularly this talented guy named Marc Beaudin — is a bunch of people doing original, creative, timely art. It is great. Marc says there are groups doing this kind of work in Minneapolis and elsewhere, but I'm just really impressed. I guess the main thing is that it is original; these people really are putting themselves into this work, shaping their lives around their art, trying to make a difference, and actually doing it.

Check out Marc's novel: "A Handful of Dust."

Hey. Did you hear that the Catholic Church took back Limbo. I guess it's a "never mind."

I'm starting to wonder if there isn't a whole lot about the Catholic Church, about all organized religion that might turn out to be a "never mind."

And E. Howard Hunt says it was Lyndon Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover who organized the murder of John F. Kennedy.

This whole "land of the free" with killer jets flying over the stadium and everyone standing there with their hands over their hearts, tears in their eyes?

Never mind.

I stayed last night at the Jeannine Coallier Catholic Worker in Saginaw. Thanks to Ellen Garrett for organizing my stay. I met Tao this morning at the breakfast table. He took a break from watching his new robots movie to have some "crunch" toast. Another bright-eyed wonderful little kid.

Last night we had beers at Ewoldt's a block from the 303. Marc showed me the table where he sits and writes poetry. He's good. Must be a great spot.

The back of Ellen's black Saturn is plastered with bumper stickers: War Is Not The Answer, Save The Farmland—No Wal-Mart, Thou Shall Not Kill, Bob Marley. A few of them were recently keyed by someone, perhaps a disgruntled Wal-Mart greeter.

The Jeannine house has chickens in the yard.

Dawn of Dawn's coffee shop let us spend the afternoon drinking free coffee and peeing. She had to leave about five to go to a community event. She said she opened the coffee shop a couple of years ago, in an area of Saginaw not popular for businesses, "because of crime."

She came down here because ...?

"To save the world."

She checked her bank account before going out, fifty dollars.

"Next week I'll make money. I think, someday it will come back to me. Which it will."

The sun is out.

George W. Bush is on the run, hiding from the truth, headed for a debacle that will put him in his historical prison cell for the rest of eternity.

You gotta love that.

It is indeed the dawn of a new day.


— Mike

From Joe Grant in Lawrence, KS

* Costs of Iraq War

* $420,818,500,000.00

* Would provide U.S. students with 20,400,376 full, four-year college scholarships

* Could provide 3,789,080 housing units

* Cover health costs for 251,987,586 children.




Next stops for The American Dream Book Tour & Protest Across the USA:

April 29, Cleveland, Drinking Liberally, Sullivan's Irish Pub, 13368 Madison, Ave., Lakewood, OH, 6 pm.
April 30, Boxcar Books, Bloomington, IN, 7 pm.
May 1, Pittsburgh Drinking Liberally, Claddagh Irish Pub, 2600 Carson Street, 7 pm.
May 2: Buffalo, Talking Leaves Books, 3 pm; The Center For Inquiry, 730 pm.

Palecek books:

www.amazon.com (search: Mike Palecek)

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