Friday, October 3

CDP Top 30 Of All-Time ('06-'08) - #28.

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#28 - "Twenty Photographs Of Door County."
(Originally Published October 17, 2007.)

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(Here, the CDP secretly wonders if anyone would notice Ben's sudden and mysterious disappearance.)

The weather was beautiful when we visited Lake Michigan. The Missus dipped her toes in for good luck, and I tried really hard not to fall in and be swept away in a riptide.

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(As the CDP ages, the most inane and depressing things make him happy.)

One thing I made a point to do was pick up some apples for my Grandma. She asked for 'Snow Crisp' apples, which only attracted laughing and confused looks from the folks at the orchard. I think she meant 'Honey Crisp,' as the entire acreage was littered with them. Done and done.

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(Swedes need to stay big, curvy and beautiful. Chocolate moves God's plan along nicely.)

A trip to 'Al Johnson's Swedish Restaurant' in Sister Bay was eye-opening, in that all of the authentic Swedish waitresses were seven feet tall, blonde and wearing those traditional outfits. All of the arrogant assholes visiting from Illinois were enjoying seasonal jams and jellies that I had never heard of before, as I dug into my grilled cheese sandwich and begged for mercy.

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(Sadly, those pants had to be Photoshopped on.)

As much as I feel that scenery and 'being there in person' is overrated, I was quite taken by the beauty of water as far as the eye can see. It's like a more personal version of staring into space and realizing your fleeting insignificance in a random world. Also, there's pie.

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(Here, I sit in a comically small chair, and look humorously larger than I normally would.)

Julie's restaurant had amazing pasta and desserts, but halfway through our meal, a huge spider crawled onto the table and damn near gave the Missus an embolism. Minutes later, our waiter crashed into the table next to us, spilling water and food everywhere. Later, when we paid the check, the man working the counter couldn't wait to stop talking to us. It was an awesome place.

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(The view from the resort was exotic, in that there were a lot of foreign cars in the parking lot.)

The four of us stayed in a two-bedroom, two-bathroom suite, boasting a full kitchen loaded with accessories. Those accessories came in handy when we were ordering pizza and drinking cider with whiskey. There was a wall-hanging that really bothered Ben, so I pulled it off the wall and set it on top of the freezer.

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(My shirt does a fantastic job of obscuring the pee stain.)

I saw this baby at a local car show; the only time I've ever seen a Delorean in person. The owner of the car didn't want me taking a photo of myself next to it, so we simply waited until he turned away. Dude, there's like, 50 of these left on the planet! Don't be selfish!

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(I sometimes have dreams of running my own small shop in a tourist city. My dreams kind of suck.)

Without question, you mainly visit Door County for their endless array of knick-knack, specialty and candy shops. I took home a pound of fudge, 10 pounds of apples, two milk chocolate bars, some candy cigarettes I swore were off the market and a candle that smelled like pumpkin pie. If I wouldn't have been wearing my wedding ring, I would have been completely indistinguishable from every other gay guy there.

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(No less than 3 seconds later, I drowned. They then asked me to leave.)

At the hotel, I walked around the entire perimeter looking for an ice machine. For a half-hour, I shuffled around, holding an empty ice bucket, while drunks and newlyweds stared at me and skittered back into their rooms. Once I did get my ice, pretty much everyone in my room was fast asleep. I don't know when I started hanging around with infants incapable of staying awake past 10pm, but it's starting to annoy me.

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(The only way I was going to get out of this was if I attempted to blend in, and act like a smug prick.)

After the parade was over, about 5000 tourists scurried into downtown, as we walked against the grain to get back to our hotel. I pretended that they were zombies, which actually started to freak me out after a while. In the photo, you can see me lurching in a feeble attempt to blend in, so they didn't eat my brain with a side of boysenberry jam.

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(I didn't alter this picture. Sadly, Sherry suffers from a condition known as 'Blurry Face.')

Man, candy stores smell so great. I asked one of the employees, "Isn't this the best job in the world?" The teenage boy looked at me with the face of someone who was about one more scoop of taffy away from an all-out shooting spree, so I paid for my fudge and got the hell out of there.

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(We will race. I will win. Always. Probably. Maybe. Not really. Probably not. No. I will lose.)

Taking the MINI Cooper was a no-brainer. The Autumn weather, mixed with the winding roads and limited traffic was simply breathtaking. Also, we could park anywhere and looked like a novelty amongst all of the embarrassingly-large Expeditions and Tahoe's. A co-worker once asked me if I feel insecure about my masculinity when I drive the MINI. This person is an idiot.

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(By this point in the trip, I was begging people not to ask me any more questions about where I wanted to go.)

Ben and Sherry wanted to visit a place that sold nothing but Olive Oil. Thinking that it was some niche-place that only attracted a small group of people, I was slack-jawed to see the line for this place extending right out the door. It's just oil, people.

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(If you have a MySpace profile picture that looks like this, kill yourself.)

Skipping stones by Washington Island (the tippy-top of Wisconsin's 'thumb') was amazing. I began to fantasize about perhaps owning a Summer home there once I became a wealthy and self-employed author. I then thought about owning a Unicorn that cried quarters and blasted Bad Religion songs out of its ass.

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(We spent Saturday night in Door County doing the same thing we do on Saturday nights in Sun Prairie.)

The master bedroom in the resort had a whirlpool hot tub, which me and the Missus were lucky enough to stay in. While we didn't 'use' the hot tub like I had assumed we would, the Missus slipped in it during a shower and almost knocked herself unconscious. Close enough, I suppose.

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(Taking a picture of a hotel pool is a lot more legal when kids aren't around.)

Me and Ben played a set of tennis on Sunday morning, and my shoulder still hurts as of Wednesday morning. I won, however, which is the only thing that matters. On the sidelines, the Missus and Sherry tried not to notice how fat, old and out completely of shape we've both become. I appreciated their support and ignorance.

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(For those that haven't met me in person, this is a normal-sized pumpkin. Two 'CDP is small' jokes in one post!)

Me and Sherry drove to a local bar to pick up a pizza, where I was instantly reminded that no matter where you are in Wisconsin, you'll always run into people that could probably be friends with your dad. Having more or less been raised in bars ourselves, the two of us didn't stick around very long, instead opting to drink alone, like well-adjusted people do.

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(It's funny because I don't understand it. Rich Swedes eat things that I'm unaware of.)

At one of the coffee shops, I bought a little pin that says, "I like sammitches." There wasn't a scrap of irony in that purchase; I freaking love sammitches, and want everyone to know. Later, I bought a hot chocolate that a bee landed in. I'm considering paying someone to follow me around with a muted trombone to make the 'whaa-whaa' sound every time something like that happens.

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(I think it's pretty obvious how Ben snared someone like Sherry into a relationship. He got her drunk and pregnant.)

Let it be said that there's nothing more rewarding and special than traveling the world with your best friends. Even if I was a dick at times, and didn't really want to do anything. I still enjoyed myself; I'm picking the vacation next time, though.

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(Eating an apple, perched high atop Lake Michigan. This is 100% more Door County content than most normal Door County photos.)

So long, Door County. We'll be back, but not soon enough.

Sound off in the comments section and enjoy your day.

Comments:
Y'know, for all of the kitschy, tourist crap up there, Door County really is just friggen beautiful (especially in autumn). And hey, who doesn't love goats on rooftops? Crazy people, that's who!
 
I freakin' love honey crisp apples.

I have actually never been to Door County, though I have lived in WI my entire life. Sad, really.
 
Holy cow, I just realized my odometer in that pic says 59,000. I just turned over 77,000 yesterday. How did I put on 18,000 miles in a year???
 
And I want to know how I;ve apperently lost a stone and a half in the past 6 days without doing a thing.

There is the possibility that my 17 year old scales are broken, but I'm trying to stay realistic.
 
That's about 13kg to you crazy foreigners.
 
I like that you Brits still use stones as a unit of measurement. It makes me feel slightly less ridiculous for relying on the length of some long-dead guy's foot for my own units of measurement.
 
What's funny is that I thought you were using stones as slang for testicles. I am glad you mentioned the weight measurement, because I was also trying to figure out how you lost a stone and a half.
 
what's a kilogram :)
 
1. Door County has this weird effect on me, where I'm miserable when I'm there, but really feel the need to go back now that it's Autumn. I blame those delicious apples and novelty chairs.

2. My hair looked really funny during that trip; like a news anchorman or something. Also, I look a little chubby.

3. Speaking of which, Carrot Duff, I've also lost 6 pounds in the last 7 days, but my reason was due to illness and a bout of depression that has me down to one meal a day.

4. Hathery, I'd like to think that the MINI drives itself around in the middle of the night when we're sleeping.

5. Sorry for being so aloof this month. Honestly, this countdown was supposed to give me a chance to take care of some other things while the CDP went into Autopilot, but in reality, it's just been a total bummer. It is 7 days a week, though, so that's pretty cool. Awesome essays every day this month!
 
CDP - You know what will make you feel better?

Works for me, anyway. But I am but a simple soul.
 

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