You know that feeling when you’re cruising towards the middle of nowhere Wisconsin, rolling green hills and pro-life billboards whizzing by you, windows down, and blasting Mamma Mia as loud as a Toyota Camry will let you—Oh, no? That’s just Austin and I having the BEST LABOR DAY EVER?!?
Forgive our skeletal faces as we’d only just been closing down the bar at Scarlet in Boystown hours previously. But our wit woke us up at 6am—as well as an overwhelming urge to be more productive than everyone else and create a enviable Snapchat story—and we went off into The Wild.
Devil’s Lake, WI, to be exact—taken from a quick Wisconsinite recommendation and a single Google map search to know it was just far enough outside the city for a day trip. (Our original idea of an NYC roadtrip was mildly too far-fetched).
The only real prep work was buying an eight-pound bag of Target brand trail mix—aptly named “the knapsack”—and the necessary McD’s breakfast sandwiches on the way there.
Alexi Murdoch got us to it and Cheryl Strayed got us through it.
With that, we quoted Cheryl's reference to this poem throughout the day. Here it is in full—
“If your Nerve, deny you” by Emily Dickinson:
If your Nerve, deny you—
Go above your Nerve—
He can lean against the Grave,
If he fear to swerve—
That's a steady posture—
Never any bend
Held of those Brass arms—
Best Giant made—
If your Soul seesaw—
Lift the Flesh door—
The Poltroon wants Oxygen—