These new plates did not arrive before the big Montana voyage. Too bad, I could have used them for 2950 miles of shameless self-promotion.
It has occurred to me that I am giving up the anonymity of my automobile. Not that I gesture rudely, cut people off, or drive aggressively, but with the closest thing to my name plastered on my vehicle at all times, I can’t hide behind the tinted windows like many Utah drivers like to do.
On the plus side, it’s a little gesture toward building a brand (me) and building a market for my book. It’s not like the topic of US Highway 89 has been overworked, compared to say Route 66. Just today, I was writing about the segment of Hwy 89 that was co-numbered with “that other road,” from Flagstaff to Ashfork. Didya know that in 1917 the road was so bad people would ship their cars on the train rather than risk driving to Williams from Flagstaff? It wasn’t surfaced until 1926, and that meant a layer of volcanic cinder, sort of like a gravel road today. Didn’t see cement until the early 1940s. Hard to see the romance in that.
Not much romance in fact-checking my text either. I keep pushing myself to look a little deeper, make sure I’ve got it right. Mistakes happen, but there aren’t any writer’s tinted windows to hide behind out here on the sagebrush.
I showed a friend my new plates yesterday, and he expressed surprise that HWY 89 wasn’t already taken. That possibility had occurred to me when I applied. But now I’ve got them, and that’s a fact.