We grab some continental breakfast and split, heading to the nearest Sears Auto Center to get the van fixed. Hopefully we won’t have to pay a lot for a muffler. or radial belt.
It turns out we won’t really have to, but it will take an hour or so to get fixed. Which is great as it is just enough time to see what sort of things go down at the Muskogee Mall on a Tuesday morning. We nearly get lucky as a woman approaches us and tells us that we look like the pop-drinking type. We’ve just met this lady and she already has us figured out. Turns out she’s doing a taste-test for two new Mountain Dew flavors. We all jump for joy simultaneously. However, our jumping is short lived as we soon discover that we must live within a forty five mile radius of Muskogee to take part. We briefly consider taking up permanent residence in the area, but ultimately decide against it.
Two hours later and two hundred dollars lighter, we head out for Springfield. Spirits seem to be a bit lower than normal due to the Mountain Dew tasting not panning out, but we take comfort in the fact that retro arcade, 1984, is located at our next stop. That’ll cheer us up.
The van has barely come to a complete stop and Tony and Scott have already hit the ground running in the direction of the legendary arcade. The rest of us catch up to find both guys holding one another, softly weeping. Turns out the place is only open Wednesday through Saturday and today is Tuesday. Dejected, we retreat to some coffee shop to kill several hours.
We play an open-mic at the Outland. An old-man, whose name escapes me, performs stand-up that is pretty amusing, until he veers off into homophobic territory. But he’s rather old, so no one says anything.
We play then head to our old pal Andrew’s place. When we awake in the morning, it’s somehow colder inside his house than outside. Cecil takes a massively long (time-wise) dump and we then leave for St. Louis.
Arriving in St Louis slightly earlier than planned, we find a laundry mat and the weaker members of the band, whom shall remain nameless, do laundry. Greg and I simply watch.
We play a set at The Way Out club. After finishing, a gentleman who probably lacks a roof to sleep under, politely demands we play “Smoke on the Water.” I clumsily stumble through the chorus. Unimpressed, the man starts yelling louder. At this point, the bartender spots that he brought in his own beer and promptly tosses him out. I feel bad for not having fulfilled his request.