Up & Down the Dial, Up & Down the Interstate.

The accident involved a state trooper- it’s hood was dented up and it was pointed south as we crept along the northbound lanes of Interstate 95, just a couple of miles south of White Marsh and before the 695 interchange. Traffic quickly jammed up and vehicles found themselves shoved up into each other’s business as emergency vehicles slugged their way to get through the congestion. In the dark, the flashing lights looked larger than normal.

An hour passed and there was no news. I scanned up and down the AM and FM dials, trying to find out what was going on. Nothing, and the only traffic reports were for Chicago and New York. There was an accident with emergency vehicles on the scene- creating lots of build up. I figured they were talking about us. But when they said that traffic on the George Washington was good, I was again disappointed and still un-informed.

I got leisurely in the truck, but it was hard not to just fall asleep. At one point I wondered, if I did fall asleep, would the starting of engines around me be enough to wake me up. I thought so, but didn’t want to take the chance, though.

These days, you have to play it straight.

The Phillies win was nice to think about, but the only sports coming across the wire was the Dolphins & Jets. Occasional snippets about the game, but largely it was either the Monday night game or regional dudes sniping about the Redskins, Ravens and eventually the Eagles. There was very little talk about basketball either. Kiss is coming to Philly, though.

Ah, but you can’t beat listening to baseball on the radio. Other sports are more visual, but goddamn baseball lends itself amazingly to the spoken word. I sat outside Union Station, waiting for the party to wrap, listening to the last two innings of the Phillies & Rockies game- at one minute hating everything about baseball and twenty minutes later loving absolutely the whole damn thing about baseball. And on the radio, dude! Baseball cracks on the radio, it keeps you hooked on like good jazz does. Plus no one outside of Union Station told me I was going to die this time, so it was all a better situation.

My Morning Jacket blasting through the speakers and coasting into Baltimore, enjoying the crispness and clarity of the evening, everything was awesome until Box Truck came through the tunnel. For a second, I thought the cops were after me. No clue why, they were just coming in hot and went flying by into the curves around the northeast side of trusty Baltimore.

Then the cars and the trucks just stopped. We all moved for the emergency vehicles and then the brake lights became the subtle lights of parked vehicles. A half hour later lights were turned off and there we were, just waiting. Some dudes were walking up to see what’s going on- asking them what was up seemed even tackier, so I didn’t. When traffic got moving, the scene looked to be pretty clean except for the busted up statey. A lot of bright lights and people standing around, directing people off of the two right lanes which were closed.

It felt good to get going again. The wind was like caffeine and I again listened to the new Pearl Jam album. Its loudness was enough to put me in that nice little zone of being able to just kind of send it graciously into the night and back home to Philadelphia. The traffic was light the rest of the way and much later than I had hoped, I backed Box Truck into the shop and called it a day. There would be just enough time for a beer and the highlights of the Phillies’ win. Just enough time to ditch sneakers and be thankful that while you might be tired and sore and you’re so stoked to go to bed- you’re home. You’ve made it on a night when some people didn’t.

Sleep well, good night and come tomorrow, go see what The Dugan is up to.

It’s Tuesday. Only two more days before the Phillies play again. Giddy up.

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