get your nicks on route 666

Postmarked October 31, 1997   From Devil's Elbow, MO

Photographer & Concept: Julia C. Tenney

      In August 1997 I was a part of VanCon; a Ninnie Minicon that involved me helping move Cinngrrl from White River Junction to Savannah and Robin, The Mad Photgrapher, from Athens to Boston.
      Masochistic? Don't get me started.
      VanCon was also nicknamed "Reznor Movers". Robin had given us her newest heater shirts. In fact, the box of "already paid for by fans across the planet" heater T-shirts was our most precious cargo on the way up. We even sold a spare shirt on the drive up.
      The nickname that ultimately stuck was "U-Hell", as it was well deserved. If you really want the details, contact me.
      In Virginia we detoured to drive through "Hurt", where the Ramen Coke Postcard received its postmark. One of the local folks we visited also mentioned Virginia's Route 666, on which could be found Old Nick's Auto Repair.
      Back on the road the next morning, we drove past Route 666, but were so eager to get to Boston that we didn't stop.
      A month later, I returned to Virginia to attend a wedding, my aunt's gallery opening, visit art schools and the fabled Wunderland. I drove past Route 666 three times before I broke down and had to check.
      In Culpeper, Route 666 terminated at Nick's Auto Repair, not, "Old Nick". Nonetheless, it was still worth getting a photo. After all, I had gone out of my way.
      Within a minute, some Bible Thumping Jesus Freak pulled over to ... offer me the guidance I so obviously needed. We disputed for a while. I considered it practice for the inevitable debates when my brother the promisekeeper visits.
      (In case you're not sure, I have major complaints about Christianity, or, at least, most of the Christians who've inflicted themselves upon me. With few but notable exceptions, most of them are not only hard sell salesmen of God, but also have to lie to themselves to not be rejected by their rigid belief system. The real Christians are good neighbors, and don't act superior around "doomed sinners" like myself).
      Mr. "I Lobotomized Myself For Jesus" wouldn't give up until the police drove up and asked me if he was harrassing me.
      I found the whole situation highly amusing, and knew it was the stuff of which Infinite Halo postcards are made.

      While I'm not knocking myself out for NIN relevance these days, Route 666 accidentally has some.
      Trent Reznor produced the (excellent) soundtrack to the (not as excellent) film Natural Born Killers. The bulk of the plot takes place along Interstate 666, off of Interstate 66, out west somewhere. (New Mexico or Arizona, I always mix them up).
      Eventually, since it also links some nice sites, I plan to check out that Rt. 666 as well. That sort of roadtrip will take serious planning. Perhaps if I make it to BurningMan one of these years.

The Next Postcard

Updated: February 1998