It's suddenly summer and thoughts tend to turn to the open road...
Taking off.... going out “on the road” is an American rite of passage. It insinuates discovering your homeland — and even yourself. Going on the road answers questions about who we are individually and collectively. "Who am I?" And "What is an American?" In some ways “on the road” is a metaphor for “America”.
RoadSpoke’s app seeks to discover America. It turns drives into explorations by uncovering — at almost every exit and looming landmark — what happened… right....HERE!
But hey, let's face it: as romantic as the concept appears, the drive is often dull as molasses. So that is where we come in! On a bleak 4, 6, or 8 lane "tabla rasa", we add context to everything you see. See that cornfield on your left? That was where African-American Union Soldiers beat back a superior force of Rebel Cavalry. See the empty blighted factory on your left? That was where Remington Rifles, the so-called "gun that won the west" were manufactured. And just behind it was where rapper LL Cool J grew up and dropped his first album in his grand-parent's basement. That's just the sort of thing we do.
Our roadside reveal illuminates our common heritage and unravels our collective DNA. It’s absolutely fascinating how much occurred in our own backyards — to hear where T Rex trod or where Washington rode and which Hollywood actress dumped her useless philandering playboy!
But does RoadSpoke succeed?
Annually lots of folks go out to search for America — to find her secrets and OUR essence. In fact, every year 212 million Americans take a road trip for pleasure.
All of them follow asphalt trails to uncover America’s promise. “On the Road” promises boundless horizons and fruitful plains. Famous Beat writer Jack Kerouac did it.
His joyful stream-of-consciousness novel “On the Road” is credited with being the 1950’s opus that “turned on” an entire generation. It propelled rebellious ’60's kids to forfeit post-war Middle American Values and search for more significance. Hundreds of Thousand hit the road with nothing but a dream and a thumb to hitch-hike by.
Before Kerouac, during the Depression, Nobel Literati John Steinbeck sent his Okies rolling west along Route 66, the Mother Road. Like Americans every day, Steinbeck's protagonists, the hopeful Joad family manifestly searched for a brighter future.
In 1967, CBS Reporter Charles Kuralt started a series called "On the Road”. It became a regular Friday night feature on "The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite". Kuralt wandered “America The Beautiful” in a motor home in search of her people and their stories. The show lasted almost 40 years. He wore out 6 RV’s before he was through.
When discussing the show’s popularity, Kuralt said, “The everyday kindness of the back roads more than makes up for the acts of greed in the headlines.”
Kuralt famously avoided the interstates in favor of the nation's side streets. He also said: “Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything...”
Thanks to the RoadSpoke app you will see everything along the highway.
Ok…Maybe you still won’t SEE much on RoadSpoke’s Interstates. But like Kuralt’s series, there will be stories by and about local folks…but also about the high and mighty. So you will witness America where it happened.
Rest assured: RoadSpoke’s app empowers Road Trippers to hear all you should love about what happened out there… out on the Open Road — from sea to shining sea!
So Welcome to the Spoken Road!