Rules of Road Trip Radio
Nothing like hitting the highway
in a car that runs with a
killer sound system.
But there are rules:
#1. The driver controls the radio.
Volume, station selection, genre, on/off.
CD, cassette, 8-track, Bluetooth.
#2. Passengers may only request and suggest.
Easy playing Merle or Hank with
someone going through a break-up, yet
pain songs are made for the road.
# 3. When starting the trip
always cue up The Allman Brothers,
preferably Live at the Fillmore.
# 4. Never, under any circumstances, may
the radio be tuned to
Billy Joel, Luke Bryan, or Kanye.
Choose silence or conversation.
# 5. Talk radio is acceptable,
with sports shows being Yinzer-centric.
Politico shows, only in small doses.
Doing otherwise will promote inter-passenger discord.
#6. High stress situations such as
the DC beltway and Pittsburgh’s Parkway East
pair well with cortisol reducing music.
Try the intro to Shaft or anything by Al Green.
# 7. When listening to a NASCAR race,
especially the closing laps,
be sure to use cruise control.
Speeding tickets N’at.
# 8. Should the reception be spotty
when listening to a Steelers game,
you may pull over, but
only inside the two-minute warning.
# 9. Radio preachers require
unanimous consent from the passengers.
Local programming only.
No prosperity pushing, mega-church types.
#10. Singalongs in small doses only.
The driver may terminate at any time.
One guideline prevails:
Better to sing a good song bad
than a bad song good.
Never fill up in Pennsylvania, the nation’s highest fuel tax.
Hitch-hikers have no standing regarding the radio.
Ditch satellite radio. Local radio gives meaning to your locale.
Road-trips with animals, babies, smokers, and
those with small bladders require separate rules.
Don’t be afraid to go alone.
Greg Clary is a retired college professor who was born and raised in Turkey Creek, West Virginia, and now resides in the northwestern Pennsylvania Wilds.
His photographs have been published in The Sun Magazine, Looking at Appalachia, Tiny Seed Literary Journal, The Watershed Journal, Hole in the Head Review, Dark Horse, Change Seven, Detour Ahead, Bee House Journal, North/South Appalachia, Tobeco Literary Journal, and many other publications.
His writing and poems have appeared in The Rye Whiskey Review, The Bridge Literary Arts Journal, Northern Appalachia Review, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Waccamaw Journal, Rusty Truck, Anti-Heroin Chic, and North/South Appalachia: Poetry and Art, Vol 1.
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