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  • Paul Davidson

Fame & Fortune in Iowa

I am in Iowa.

If I had the ability to create one of those graphics that you see in movies like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom where you see the plane travelling over the huge map and it accompanies a red line that extends to each destination the plane travels, you would see one go from megacity Los Angeles to huge hub of the country, Chicago and then to… Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

I have never been to Iowa.

My first stop was to Country Kitchen, a little diner on a little street in the little city of Cedar Rapids. I was only halfway through what I like to call my “red-eye breakfast” when the manager of the establishment sauntered over…

Manager: Kathy just told me we had some people from Los Angeles here today… Is that true!?

Me: Yes, it’s true.

Manager: Wow. WOW. Los Angeles.

Awkward pause. I looked up at him with a piece of egg hanging from my mouth. Having had no sleep in the last 24 hours except for 2 hours on a plane, hair all mussed up, I must have looked like a mess. Still, the manager continued…

Manager: A few years back there was a kid who worked here who, well, the only way I can describe him is that he looked like he was one of those kids… in a rock band.

Me: Oh?

Manager: And him and his friends, they were all like 17 years old, decided one night after watching The Blues Brothers to get in a car and drive all the way to Joliet, Illinois and go to the prison there in Joliet. When they got there, they took a picture of themselves in front of the prison, then drove all the way back to Cedar Springs!! Can you believe it?

Me: Wow. That’s…

Manager: Kind of crazy, I know.

What it had to do with Los Angeles, I have no idea.

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