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NGO_Vleeptron (aka "Bob from Massachusetts") recently featured LIVE on BBC WORLD SERVICE, heard briefly by Gazillions!!!

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Location: Great Boreal Deciduous Hardwood Forest, New England, United States

old dude, all hair, swell new teeth

29 November 2005

BEEP BEEP BEE-BEE-BEE-BEEP ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION COMMUNIQUE RCVD FROM NEPHEW ICE CUBE

The R/V Laurence M. Gould in Antarctic seas, bound for Antarctica. No web access, e-mails must be kept short.

Sorry, no web access for me here either (except over the inmarsat phone at
2-3 dollars (american) per minute. feel free to send me your good blogs
(ok your best blogs, they must all be good or you wouldn't be unky munky)
if they are 10k or less. we pay out of pocket for more than 25k per day
(incoming + outgoing). And please cancel my subscription by Dec. 30 as
that's our anticipated return to cofrima land and Punta Arenas.

Oh, by the way, Lider (which looks like a subsidiary of a Wal-Mart grocery
store, only slightly smaller and much nicer) opened in Punta last year when
I was here and so the junk snack selection is excellent. As is the
selection of pate, cheese, salami, yerba mate, and made in china clothes,
kitchenware and toys.

cheers from 53 deg south and counting,
--louie

At 06:15 AM 11/28/2005 -0500, you wrote:
>http://vleeptron.blogspot.com/2005/11/i-wanna-buy-junk-snacks-at-cofrima.html
>

6 Comments:

Anonymous patfromch said...

VALLEE: 2. I don't go, let me say
S: 1. frightened me a little, because it seemed endless.
V: 2. this again, I don't go for this northmanship at all.
S: 1. We seemed to be going into nowhere, and the further north we went
V: 2. I don't knock those people who do claim that they want to go farther and
S: 1. the more monotonous it became. There was nothing but snow
V: 2. farther north, but I see it as a game -- this northmanship bit. People say "well,
S: 1. and, to our right, the waters of Hudson's [sic] Bay.
V: 2. were you ever up at the North Pole?"
S: 1. … Now this was my impression
V: 2. "And, hell, I did a dog-sled trip of 22 days,"
S: 1. during the winter, but I also flew over the country
V: 2. and the other fellow says "well, I did one of 30 days."
;)
http://www.collectionscanada.ca/obj/m23/f1/nlc003824-v4.jpg

16:16  
Blogger Bob Merkin said...

the train part of my Expedition to Hudson's Bay (I say Hudson's and I say the hell with it) began in Toronto and took about 3 days to reach Churchill, Manitoba.

the most amazing astonishing thing that happened -- and there were many, including me this far |---------| from the snout of a Polar Bear -- was on the Civilized Inter-City Train from Toronto to Winnipeg. About 95 percent of all Canadians live in the Big-City Southern Narrow Highway-Train-Industrial Belt from Quebec City to Winnipeg, within 50 miles / 80 kilometers of the U.S. Border. Most Canadians are skyscraper superhighway high-speed electric running hot water elevator people.

Over dinner in the very nice dining car, I told a Canadian husband and wife where my backpack and I were going.

They looked at me like I was crazy.

"Why do you want to go there?" the wife asked. "There's nothing up there."

Your dialogue is describing the classic symptoms of Arctomania. The instant you get infected with Arctomania, you cannot immediately that week mount an Expedition Direct to the North Pole. You must start small. Baby steps.

Moosonee, on the southern tip of James Bai, you can get to eight hours after you lock your car doors in a car park.

Churchill -- 2.5 days on a train from Winnipeg north to Hudson Bay. In Churchill,

HEY CLOSE THE DOOR! LOCK THE DOOR!

or else a polar bear will wander into the store or restaurant or hotel after you and try to kill someone. In peak tourist bear-watching season, there are no hotel reservations, the place is packed and jammed, but the main street (I think it's called Only Street) looks like a Ghost Town, always almost deserted, no one in sight. If you see someone in the street, he/she is running, pretty briskly. Not good to tarry or dawdle or loiter during Polar Bear season. Adidas and Nikes better than boots if snow not too deep.

The sad part about being killed by a Polar Bear is that after the PB knocks you down with one swipe of his massive arm, he sniffs you and licks you, maybe just a little taste -- and then he spits you out and walks away. PB does not like the way humans taste. We do not have the right kind of fat (seal fat) and we don't have enough fat.

Did you find the tiny dot Nain on the map yet? So far this is the craziest farthest north in the Circumpolar Arctomaniacal Polaris World I have Planted My Expedition Flag yet. You understand -- my Polar Expeditions are not funded and subsidized and sponsored by Miskatonic University or the National Geographic Society or CVS Pharmacy or Hooters Restaurants. I am schlepping ever nearer The North Pole on the financial strength of my MasterCard and Visa. I am heading for the North Pole dependent almost entirely on Public Transportation: buses, trains, ferries. To The Stars by Greyhound Bus.

(But if you need to take a taxi in some of these places -- Oh man you should Dig Those Crazy Taxis! Caterpillar tank treads instead of wheels! All home-made Krazy Snowmobile Junkyard Recycled Vehicles. Or with giant 4-wheel-drive wheels as tall as an adult, the cab is 2 meters above the ground. This taxi driver can and will take you ANYWHERE!)

Better: Rent your own 4-wheel All-Terrain Vehicle and just drive 20 miles out of town all by yourself in PB Season because you are Suicidally Insane and Unsupervised. I know a guy who did that. I am embarrassed to tell you How Well I Know This Guy. I know this guy Very Intimately.

Now my new motto is: IQALUIT OR BUST

(See map.)

btw Ice Cube's BROTHER HAS ALREADY BEEN TO IQALUIT!!!!!!!! Just 4 hours in the Iqaluit Airport (windsock and short "Good Luck!" runway) waiting for the next plane. But this #&*%^#*&%^ has been to Iqaluit before ME!!!!!!

He had business up there. He was buying new champion sled dogs for his team and for his wife's team.

I feel bad about the PBs just trying to eat something that tastes good. From now on when I am in These Parts, I will carry a bottle of Barbecue Sauce in my pocket.

Yes, the Canadian husband and wife were right. There's nothing up there.

17:04  
Blogger Bob Merkin said...

Also I like to go places where the guy or woman in the seat across from you genuflects whenever the plane takes off or tries to land. THAT'S my idea of FLYING!

One time on the ferry from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, to Portland, Maine, the ship's crew was vomiting! For the last 2 hours of the voyage, a woman in the lounge was just constantly non-stop weeping.

Where's my Pizza? I missed it the first time, but of course you are quoting the most amazing Radio Documentary ever recorded and broadcast: The Idea of North, by the late Canadian pianist Glenn Gould. The CBC phoned him and asked what he'd like to contribute for their huge 50th or 75th Anniversary celebration, and he asked, "Can I make a Radio Documentary about the Canadian Arctic?"

All Vleeptroids are herewith commanded to get your hands on The Idea of North, make everybody else in the house go away for an hour or two, and listen to every second of it.

Most of it is about the same Winnipeg-Churchill train trip thru the Vast Canadian Wilderness that I took. (I knew which seat he sat in on the train and I sat there the whole time, too. I sat on the Ghost's Lap all the way to Hudson's Bay.)

17:38  
Anonymous patfromch said...

sounds a bit like Switzerland (apart from the PBs)
I used to work in the warehouse of an ice cream factory. The job was, literally, very cool. Apart from lunch and a ciggie break i spent 8 hours a day working in a giant fridge where the temperature was a constant -28 dg C. Even with gloves and a good parka it was BLOODY COLD. Arschkalt. Saukalt. But it was good money and one of the first things I bought with it was the GG radio documentary set and got infected with Arctomania.
another very important symtom of Arctomaina is tha at least I complain about swiss winters, snow, the arfing cold, sob-zero temperatures etc but I still wanna go to the Poles.
I got a good parka.

17:43  
Blogger Bob Merkin said...

Meine gut freund diese Robot Translator sprache: Saukalt = Sow cold. You mean as cold as a female pig? If korrekt -- yes, a nice image. I've worked in one of those walk-in freezers, too. Truly this is The Poor Man's Polar Expedition. Maybe every Polar Explorer began his/her Quest with teenage work inside the walk-in freezer. Some people just want more.

One of the most famous brands of frozen vegetables in USA is Birdseye. I always thought it was a cute advertising word Bird's Eye, although what the hell frozen vegetables have to do with the Eye of a Bird ...

Clarence Birdseye got this idea that you could freeze vegetables and then sell them to people -- and also sell them the electric Freezers which had just been invented -- I think in the 1920s. He did his pioneering experiments of quick-freezing the fresh vegetables in Greenland (**** JUST A DAY FLYING TRIP FROM REYKJAVIK!!! ****).

Greenland ist Nicht Greune. Greenland is The Mother of All Walk-In Freezers. Mit glaciers. Und Inuits. Und Eisbär.

The last half of "Smilla's Sense of Snow" takes place in Greenland. Do not be fooled. In the movie, that is not really Greenland. They filmed it in (yawn, boring) Alaska.

19:00  
Anonymous Jim Olson said...

Ok, so I am going to reveal a bit of my history.

Bob, draw a line from 66 deg 30' N by 171 deg to 26 deg 20' N by 8 deg 10' E.

That line marks how far north I have been.

We surfaced inside of 89 deg 30' on the way by.

You know that sextant I gave you? Its the one I used that day to plot our location at noon.

00:06  

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