Posted by: bkropf | October 8, 2007

The Hills, Boo! (4)

I am pensive as today the family vacation ended and I am on my own. The van’s engine sputtered to life after resting silently a few days. I had a long drive across town to my cousins house. Tyler worked on homework as I spent most of the afternoon planning and working on getting the blog up.

Tyler and I met some of his friends in Bend for ‘locals’ night at a local brewery for dinner. Bend is thriving town which reminds me of Aspen (I have never been to Aspen but I watched Dumb and Dumber). There is also an incredibly high number of Toyota FJ vehicles driving to and fro. Did you know Bend has one of the highest Coffee Stands per capita of any town?


We watched the Bachelor after dinner and though it was entertaining, I find it funny that this type of show is what the masses watch. It seems like there are so many ridiculous shows (i.e. The Hills) which seem to have no societal value that pass time giving nothing back. It is like we get attached to these people’s lives in the show instead of cultivating our own relationships. Why I wonder, is it because it is safe and easy? I find shows like The Biggest Loser much more substantial.


One of the more exciting tools I have been using is It is a website with hundreds of thousands of people networked with available couches and recommendations to share. As I drive through the country, I am able to write locals on the route and get tips on local attractions. I’m looking forward to seeing what tips I get.


I have decided the next leg of my journey will consist of taking Hwy 26 east to Boise. From Boise I will go north to Yellowstone. From Yellowstone, I will travel south through Cheyenne to Denver.


I watched Nacho Libre last night and after hearing so many negative reviews from my friends, it exceeded my expectations. I thought it was a simple, fun movie with some quotable lines such as, “The brothers don’t think I know a butt load of crap about the Gospel, but I do!”


The highpoint of the day was getting the blog operational and spending time with my cousins. The low point, none. I look forward to being on my own and doing some reading (finishing Atlas Shrugged). I look forward to listening to the Decemberists.



  1. I think expectations are probably the most underrated aspect of how we perceive anything. If you go into a movie thinking it’s going to be awesome, odds are good that it will let you down. If you go in thinking that it will be bad, than there is a good chance you’ll leave happy feeling that it exceeded your expectations. I find myself unable to tell anyone that a movie was “awesome” because I just know that they are going to go into it expecting the best movie of their life, and then report back to me that “it wasn’t that good”, because I had built it up. This holds true for so many more things than movies. I’m not sure what to make of that because I’d hate to go through life with low expectations but on the other hand it would sure create some form of satisfaction in life.

    So what do you expect out of your trip? I’m sure the unexpected events are going to be the most memorable. Most of my favorite memories from my Europe trips were all unplanned.

    And I bet you didn’t expect me to go out to my driveway and bang on your van’s window 15 minutes ago at 2:30 in the morning either… =)

  2. Barney, you rock! I love your site…definitely made me laugh out loud! And I, for one, thoroughly enjoyed Nacho Libre…

    Well, I am looking forward to hearing more about your exciting adventures! Have a wonderful time and drive safe!


  3. Barney, you are a great writer! Mom said you broke down and were towed back to Bend. Keep your chin up….. I hope “the brown turd” pardon my language will be on the move soon! Love the photo. Love you brother! Janna

  4. Awesome writting!!!!!

    I love reading about your journey!!!!!


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