Friday Food for Thought: July 1, 2022 – On the Road Edition

Hello Friends, welcome to Friday Food for Thought. As I did earlier in the summer, I’m taking a couple of weeks off to (hopefully) relax and recharge. This week’s Friday Food for Thought offers a few of the items I’m be carrying with me. I travel for the experience, not to be weighed down by stuff, so I consider these to be essentials. In the meantime, click here for my previous On the Road post. Let’s begin!

1) Turning Pages, Part 2:

I never travel without one or more books, depending on the length of the trip (and the length of the books). This time I’m revisiting Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. Loved by some and despised by others, I read Catch-22 years ago and feel this is the time for a fresh reading. Heller, like his protagonist Yossarian, really was a World War II bombardier, but just as M*A*S*H (1970) used a Korean War setting to offer commentary on the Vietnam War, Catch-22 uses WW II to comment on the Korean and Vietnam Wars, the capitalist military-industrial complex, and was also partly inspired by the rabid bullying of innocent people by Joseph McCarthy. (While Catch-22 was published in 1961, Heller began writing it in 1953.) I can also recommend the excellent Mike Nichols film adaptation which, like M*A*S*H, was released in 1970.

2) “One Word: Plastics.”:

References to The Graduate (1967) aside, the plastics industry has done us more harm than good. It’s rare for me to recommend a plastics product, but I always travel with a Sistema Plastics container, specifically the 150ml Yogurt To Go. I don’t carry yogurt in mine, but find it perfect to organize all manner of small items. It’s durable and fits nicely in a side pocket on my backpack. Mine has been in action for years, crossing the United States, visiting Europe and Central America, and it continues to serve me well.

3) Headphoning It In:

Air travel is stressful enough, so I try to tune out as much surrounding conversation as I can, particularly the endless announcements that seem to drag on longer every year. I get help from Audio-Technica ATH-M50x headphones. They don’t have a noise-cancelling feature, but I’ve found noise-cancelling headphones never actually cancel the noises I want cancelled. The Audio-Technicas cover the entire ear, which is its own form of noise cancellation, and I’m very happy with the sound quality. The headphones fold into a relatively compact shape for travel, have a long cable with a 3.5mm connector, and include a 6.3mm screw-on connector for increased flexibility.

4) It’s a Stand-Up Product:

As a photography enthusiast, a tripod is nice to have, but conventional tripods are too bulky for travel. I use a Pedco Ultrapod. Mine is the Ultrapod II, but it seems the company has now advanced to the Ultrapod III. It’s portable, sturdy, easy to operate, and includes a handy Velcro strap for attachment to a post or pole. The Ultrapod has slip-resistant rubber feet and the ball-head allows landscape or portrait orientation.

That’s all for this week. Friday Food for Thought will return in two weeks. Have a good weekend!

This post contains NO affiliate links. All suggestions are based on my own personal experience, your experience may vary. Nothing herein is intended to serve as medical, legal, financial, or any other advice for which you should consult professionals and not some random guy on the Internet.

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