Sunday, July 24, 2005

Kamas, Utah

A brutal sight of broken cars, fumes, sparks and firemen covered the arena last night at the Kamas, Utah Demolition Derby. Let's not leave out the mullets, beer, and beauty queens in attendence.

It's an annual event in honor of the days of '47; a holiday to celebrate the spirit of our Mormon Pioneers and the day they finally made it to the Salt Lake Valley. I went with Maufia and 150 of her closest kin. Friends I'd known in college were there, and had married Muaf's brothers and now had little babies. Fat-cheeked cherubs bouncing on our knees and shouting, "truck" with wide-eyed excitement.

A part of me thought of the ridiculous display of violence, and of the serious air-pollution threat of this event. I wanted to give the announcer a piece of my mind on gender discrimination as he told one off-color joke after another about women getting naked. I even shouted out-loud during the claps and cheers of the crowd that he needed some gender-sensitivity training. But nobody heard me. Well, Maufie heard me and knowingly smiled. Oh well. Actions speak louder than words anyway, right? But I'll admit watching the carnage was a thrill. Mauf dared me to join the powder puff competition (that's where women are allowed to crash into each other). I most definitely refused. I'll watch the violence, but no way am I going to get down in there and participate in it. I dared Mauf back, but she wouldn't do it either.

We had a long talk on the way home (Me, Maufie, and two of her friends that also came with us, but that I didn't know) about technology and buying cars and gadgets and supporting our techno-lifestyles and that we need to get back to the basics and simple things in life like country living and reading books. I agreed and gave freely my own thoughts on the matter. It was all good, high-minded conversation. We even went so far as to outline the dangers of cell-phone useage. But I insisted I still like my Ipod and that it is one of those waves-of-the-future deals. And anyway, without technology we would never have had the pleasure of watching spoofed up old cars destroying each other in a cloud of dust and gas fumes.

By the way, Kamas is sooo adorable. Old barns turned antique warehouses, a man selling stove pipes on the side of the road, a big old-time storefront made pizza parlor, complete with a Miss Kamas poster in the window and homemade icecream. The chubby owner winked and told me the bottled water was on him. On the outskirts of town (which isn't all that far from Main Street) cows, turn-of-the-century homes, and tractors paint the scenery. Everywhere there's a smell of hay and clean canyon air. Back to basics. Looked around and realized I could live here. I'd ride a bike everywhere, with a basket, and I'd buy antique furniture. I'd support myself as a paperback writer, and be somewhat of a local celebrity when my first book was published. I'd grow organic cabbages and sell them on the side of the road, next to the man hawking old stoves. Ahhh, life would be picturesque.

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