Drive Oakland To The Grapevine, 1988 Style

Back in 1988, I hopped in my MGB-GT and headed south from Oakland, taking a photograph out the windshield every five miles until I got to the Grapevine, just north of Los Angeles. Yes, I worked a full-manual SLR while driving a twitchy sports car, and reloaded film while driving as well (thus losing the right to complain about people using their cellphones while driving). The idea was to load the shots in a pair of slide projectors, add weird soundtrack, and do some sort of installation art piece. I did the piece and, sadly, lost the slides during a move years later. However, I just ran across a long-forgotten videotape of the slideshow and was able to grab most of the images off it. All that remained was to dub the Murilee Arraiac song "This Is What He Is Saying" onto it and rollin' on I-5 like Dukakis in a tank!


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I did the same drive about four years ago in a new Mustang. Being familiar with only coastal California, driving through the Central Valley was, if nothing else, educational. That slide show, much like my drive, was a great display of how mighty an agricultural state California really is.