Last American Hitchhiker
Do You Hitch Hike?
Does anybody hitchhike anymore? Hitch hiking was popular in the 60's and 70's: even in the 50's, one of my Mom's friends hitchhiked to my parents' wedding. Hitchhiking fell out of style and became taboo in the later years of the 20th century, but the bad press and nut jobs who gave the genre the heebie jeebies never foretold the secret weapon of a rebounding nation - Mark "Eyeball" Kneeskern, who has literally re-written the book on the hitchhiking experience of the new millennium.
The Last Hitchhiker - Tales of Wander is exactly what it does not sound like: a humorous, helpful, sometimes even spiritual guide book / meditative reflection of a hitch hiker who hitches for pure pleasure. For Mark, the joy is in the going, not necessarily (but yeah, sometimes) in the getting there. He is all over the American West. Mark is an artist and photographer, so his view is always a bit creative, which comes through in his writing with a fresh and off-the-cuff style, leaving me often thinking "did he really just say that?". I'd give an example, but feel like it would be a spoiler. I'll just say this: you might develop an deeper appreciation for owls and rainbows.
The real surprise and joy in the experience, I think, seems to be Mark's take on the people who pick him up. There does not seem to be anything typical about them - they are not predictable, and not always friendly, but quite often, they are downright fascinating! He does not hold back, either. I even feel a little sorry for some of those folks who picked him up, if anybody ever recognized him in the book. Careful, you could be reading about your own self: Figuratively, any way.
all photos by Mark Eyeball Kneeskern: Used with permission
Getting it Published
Thanks to Kickstarter Supporters like You!
These are the accumulated experiences of over 15,000 miles of uncommon motation. I took a thumb, a notepad, a few pages torn from an atlas, heaps of humor, a few pieces of cardboard, snacks, my favorite music, a few lousy bucks, a slowly improving intuition, water of course, camp gear, my imagination, quality Italian hiking boots, and a straw hat.
I did NOT bring a cellphone, a laptop, or prejudices.
EYEBALL Studios Guarantee: You will laugh, you will think deep thoughts, you will read in the bathtub, you will not use it as a doorstop except in heavy winds, you will spill coffee on it but I think that only adds character, you will sometimes wonder why I did it, you will hopefully pass it along to your friends and familly, it will not make your kids go out and start a hitch-hiking career, you will be satisfied yet left wanting more...
Let's make sure this awesome book gets published.... with so many great stories to share, it would be such a shame if it never made it to print!
Pour two strangers into a car, add their personal stories, throw in a couple hundred miles, and shake. What happens? FUNNY, that's what.
Are you Ready for Your Own Hitch Hiking Experience? - Be Prepared!
And be sure to get your copy of Mark's book first too!
The Dark Side of The Road
Get to looking & feeling tiptop before hitting the pavement...you’re only gonna degrade from there
From the (Maybe not?) Last American Hitch hiker
Always Look 'em in the Eyes: Windows to the soul, right? It is often true. You can learn the ability to gauge someone's character by observing their eyes. If your potential driver has a very shifty or disturbed look in their eyes, don't take the ride.
Never Hitch at Night: Have you ever heard the song "The Freaks Come Out at Night"? There is a much greater likelihood that you will be picked up by a drunk, drugged-up, or just plain sketchy individual after the sun goes down.
Don't Have a Schedule: Seems obvious, but I have hitched with a schedule before, and it is much more stressful that way. The worst result of hitching with a schedule is that you will take rides that you would normally avoid. You'll think to yourself, "Well, I'm sure that twitch is just hereditary," or "I'll get used to that smell."
I'd have to say that Patience and Tolerance are the most imprtant things I carry with me on these trips. Patience to wait for eight hours in one sopt and tolerance to accept that people have completely different opinions and perspectives from yours. I try to keep a journalistic demeanor about me when I'm hitching...it's safer and less stressful for everyone.
It takes all kinds.....You Never Know What You'll See on the Road!
Excerpt from the Book
Monkey walk of death - South Dakota >>> July 20, 2011:
The road is made of taffy...the end of the bridge stretches away from me...my breathing is the only thing I hear ...more
Signs - Where are You Going?
The only weapons I carry are my mind and my gut instinct. ....Mark "Eyeball" Kneeskern - The Last American Hitch Hiker....
The Road.... Traveled
October, 2011 Colorado - HIGH IN THE MOUNTAINS
Mark's Road Philosophy:
The road is Human Psychology 101. What's happening in the mind of the driver? How will they view me from their perspective? Why should they pick me up? Did I wear the right shirt? A small percentage of folks will pick any stinkin' body off the shoulder, but I'm trying to increase my odds. 09/03/2012
Share your thoughts! All Comments welcome .... thank you for stopping by!