Framing the Dialogue


“When you cross the Piscataqua River Bridge from New Hampshire’s abbreviated, novelty coastline into Maine there is a sign at the border that says “MAINE,” and beneath that, “VACATIONLAND.” It also says “VACATIONLAND” on the license plates. This is either a cruel joke, or maybe simply an error. It may be that Maine is called Vacationland because when Maine was invented, we didn’t really know what a “vacation” was yet.

Author John Hodgman takes us on a humorous journey through is life growing up as a son, a husband, and a father.  His stories are funny in many instances as you join him on his travels through the country and his life.  It’s difficult to write anything succinct about this book as the veers from subject to subject.  It might be enough to suggest that it was a funny read…especially if you’re a dad.

“After a while one impulse would win out over the other and they would drive on. It happened several times. It was fantastic. “Let’s come back here every Sunday,” I said to my daughter. “We will stand by the side of the road and wave at passing cars. And as they turn on the road, we will run over the hill to end-run them and wave at them a second time, like that phantom hitchhiker from The Twilight Zone. “Look at us. We have all the odd and specific details that make a good ghost story. People will say, ‘I went to the cemetery and saw them! The pale girl in the red raincoat, and the mustache man who killed her.’ They will tell the story to their friends, and soon enough people will come looking for us. They may even imagine they’ve seen us, even on those days we don’t come. And even when you’re in college and I am too sad to come here by myself, our journey through this underworld will become legend. We will continue, like descendants of descendants of the birds.” And that way, I told my daughter, we will live forever.”


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