Do legends and lore drive us to explore regional destinations?
Should we let our travel choices be guided by the stars?
In this episode, Kerri and Johnna talk about how to get through the grey and drizzly days of spring, why we seek out haunted (or “haunted”) New England places, and what we think about travel horoscopes.
We also discuss the Connecticut geotag on Instagram (below), along with how trespassing is connected with privilege.
Kerri refers to a near-altercation. You can read about that here. Kerri also talks about an episode in which she was not trespassing in Willimantic, but has realized that the very last part of that story does, in fact, involve trespassing. But that happened several decades ago, so let’s leave it alone.
After recording, we did confirm that an episode of The Office explored the problem with GPS.
In the episode, Johnna mentions the time Kerri got crop-dusted in a tobacco field. We recorded this segment, but then cut it. In short, Kerri thought it would be a good idea to wander around, barefoot, in a tobacco field in Connecticut.
While talking about bicycle touring, Tony shouted out Warm Showers. This is a free way for cyclists to get shelter and a shower while touring.
Finally, it was as if the Twitterverse was listening:
Tony Cherolis used to be an engineer, but always will be an engineer. Currently, he is working at the Center for Latino Progress as the Transport Hartford Coordinator. Transport Hartford works on mobility, jobs access, education, and community organizing around multimodal transportation, transit, rail, biking, and walking. Between projects, Tony likes to go on silly adventures, cross country bike tours, and generally makes bad / different decisions. You are likely to find him around Hartford on foot or a bike, and sometimes sleeping in local parks. [photo credit: Chion Wolf]
What good ideas should CT steal from other states?
Which regional travel experiences are overrated?
How do we shop for souvenirs?
If imitation is the greatest compliment, what ideas should Connecticut steal from other states? What stands in the way of us adopting and adapting practices and events that are at once genius and totally ordinary? In this episode, Johnna and Kerri also explore popular New England travel destinations and experiences that are maybe just a touch overrated, even if sometimes, legitimately good. Learn what makes Johnna “irrationally angry.” Finally — if nobody brings home souvenirs, did a trip even happen?
In the first segment, we talk about the Atlantic Antic and Smorgasburg, both of which have since been confirmed to still exist. You can determine for yourself if MulchFest is anywhere near as potentially exciting as Kerri thinks. For more information about WaterFire and Fur Rondy, visit their websites. Johnna mentions The 203.
In the second segment (15:15), Johnna refers to the New Maine News. We discuss the Big E. We also mention Bear’s Smokehouse BBQ, the Woodstock Fair, and the Durham Fair. Sidenote: occasionally Kerri says “leafs” instead of “leaves”; this is a residual habit from when she would talk to her dog about jumping in the leafs — oops.
The last segment (32:45) makes mention of spoon collecting, which has a history.
Note: podcast contains occasional, relatively lightweight curse-words. Use the earbuds at work or around the kiddos.
Regional destinations that surprised us, pleasantly or otherwise.
When prepping for a trip, do we prefer planning it all out or leaving everything to chance?
What Connecticut features qualify as quaint? Johnna and Kerri talk about happy surprises and a few disappointments in regional travel. Is it better to travel based on an itinerary or on whichever way the wind blows?
Connecticut stereotypes, as defined by “You Know You’re From Connecticut When…” lists.
Our childhood vacation memories in the region.
Travel, loneliness, fear, and how they intertwine.
Are Connecticut residents defined by how we eat our cheeseburgers and lobster rolls? Johnna and Kerri rip into a few “You Know You’re from Connecticut When” listicles in this episode, before reflecting on how childhood travel experiences have informed our adventure styles as adults, specifically, as the kind of adults who explore the world alone, despite loads of fears.
Special Moments and Details
We begin this episode by looking at two listicles overflowing with Connecticut stereotypes ( “40 Ways You Know You’re From Connecticut” and “27 Ways You Know You’re From Connecticut”) and evaluate each and every one, though for the sake of time, we edited out most of our discussion, leaving you with the best parts. In wondering what a Desperate Housewives-type show of Greater Hartford would look like, Kerri is reminded of The Hotwives of Orlando with Kristen Schaal, but as you’ll hear, could not remember the name of the show, the name of the actress, or the name of anything else she was in. Later in this segment, she confuses the Heublein Tower with something else. We talk about Caldor and Fudgie the Whale; as we’ve learned, neither were born in or specific to Connecticut. (Carvel now has its headquarters in Georgia and is sold worldwide.) Inspired by Caldor, Johnna recalls the awesomely ‘70s Flying J logo. Unsatisfied with how others have defined living in Connecticut, Johnna created her own list many years ago for The Size of Connecticut:
You Know You’re From CT When:
1) You wear diamond earrings with a sweatshirt.
2) You drive east and call it north.
3) You have both a MetroCard and a Charlie Card in your wallet.
4) You haven’t pronounced a consonant at the end of a word in years.
5) You think noticeable makeup and styled hair are the height of trashy.
6) You don’t slow down or move over for vehicles stopped in the breakdown lane. [Update: CT has since imported this annoying law, unfortunately.]
7) When the Yankees play the Red Sox, you feel like you live in the Balkans.
8) You know that Mohegan Sun is nicer than Foxwoods.
9) You panic when you go to a state that doesn’t have Dunkin’ Donuts.
10) You leave your bag unattended in your shopping cart while you walk around the Stop & Shop.
11) You got that bag at the Coach outlet at Clinton Crossing.
12) You know the story of the Charter Oak and actually secretly think it’s kind of cool.
13) You have CL&P’s emergency number programmed into your phone.
14) You have, while living in another state or country, said “You can take the girl out of Connecticut, but you can’t take the Connecticut out of the girl.”
15) You said the above because someone discovered you owned more than one L.L. Bean Boat & Tote bag.
16) You think it’s weird that supermarkets in other places don’t cover their beer with a little curtain on Sundays. [Update: CT has since gotten rid of this silly law, fortunately.]
17) You have either climbed over, fallen off of, or injured yourself on, a stone wall.
18) You think sand consists of rocks, broken shells, and seaweed.
19) You pack three coats of various weights for a weekend trip.
20) When someone from Massachusetts says Connecticut isn’t really New England, you get offended and splutter “Hey, Masshole…we were the Provisions State!”
21) You know how to pronounce Coventry and Berlin correctly, but you don’t, because you’re not from Coventry or Berlin.
22) You think county sheriffs are something they made up for old Westerns.
23) You remember having dark blue license plates, stopping for tolls at the New York border, being “full of surprises,” and the days when the Danbury Fair Mall was just the Danbury Fair.
24) It does not strike you as strange when people consider towns 20 minutes away from their home to be essentially unexplored foreign lands.
25) When you were little you couldn’t understand how Canada could have a Yukon too.