[ Early today; I have to be up at unspeakably morningish hours to drive people to the airport. None of these people are bunny_hugger, though, which is as happy as that morningishness can allow. ]
Excerpts from An Incomplete Guide To Closed Weigh Stations Of The Lesser Pompous Valley:
Rethlehem Weigh Station
Location: New Old Brunswick Turnpike, west of Exit 12.
Services: Weight of truck determined within 10 pounds or driver wins a stuffed doll. Age of driver determined within two years or driver also wins doll stuffings. Birth month of driver determined or driver given new birth certificate.
Food: Burger ranching provided for those willing to track down and rope their own. Wheat-gluten patties available but less challenging except when the ropers are poorly coordinated. Services available 24 hours, but not all in the same day.
Photocopies: Available with notarized copy of your graduate transcript.
Architecture: Though the building was opened in 1976, it has no record of causing madness among visitors. The orange wall carpeting was removed by an extragalactic energy-being which requires shag carpeting to thrive and lurks wherever community colleges exist.
Historical Notes: This weigh station marks the location of the old Old Brunswick Turnpike, demolished in 1964 to make way for a row of fin-de-siecle style mansions, and themselves demolished in 1974 to construct an historical marker commemorating the Battle of Rumpled Grove, which was not held due to not fitting with anyone's plans for the battles.
Roldsmobile Weigh Station
Location: Northbound on the Lanery past exit 4 but before exit Other 4.
Services: The woods behind the station are comfortable and inviting, perfect for people who've realized they don't know how they got to this point, and only know they need to walk away from this civilization until they find deep in the half-real deciduous forests of their imagined youths a treetop city made of blanket fortresses, cardboard refrigerator box houses, and multi-layered wind-chime mobiles made of surplus CDs. Bring boxes of interestingly-flavored spaghetti and postcards to reassure your loved ones that you are, but will need your head back together.
Food: Interestingly-flavored spaghetti, plus some restaurant mints that we forgot was in our jacket pockets.
Photocopies: Are made by hand in trade for restaurant mints by a team of highly-trained squirrels, or made in trade for boring-flavored spaghetti by a team of less-trained chipmunks for those willing to accept a lower quality of reproduction with more claw marks. Either way, nibblings around the edge prove uniqueness of the copies.
Architecture: Averages 200 count, achieves 350 count in the upscale Shawangunk Conglomerate district, with some newer developments at 400. Property reassessment hopes to determine 400 what.
Historical Notes: Is credited with launching more urban legends per capita than any other closed weigh station in the Lesser Pompous Valley. Also longtime resident E G 'Stokes' Wisconsin claims to have been the person who explained to Dear Abby there was such a thing as texting and what people did with it.
Closed: But the little light is still on.
Rermaid's Upgrade Weigh Station
Location: Bottom of mystical pond 215 feet north of Route 26/Old Route 26/Business Route 2-6. Accessible only while nature spirit guardians permit.
Services: Weight of Earth determined to within 10 pounds or driver given animatronic representation of planet.
Food: All food services provided by strange, tall figures in robes who solemnly intone, ``sponge or brain'', rolling out the ``or'' so it sounds like a deeper question than it is. This is a trick question.
Photocopies: Are actually quantum echoes indistinguishable from the original in all properties including position, making them inseparable from the originals, which must now be read as though shouting or quite sarcastic.
Services: Helpful reminder for those of short attention span.
Architecture: Due to quantum effect is actually 94 percent copy of itself, causing visitors to shrink just a bit every time they visit. Frequent visitors have staked out long-term occupancy in the storage lockers outside and banded together for protection, explaining the tiny ramparts, harpoon guns, and teacups of boiling oil near the blue locker set. Do not approach without the password, '
Historical Notes: Regular observations of the star Sirius mark 8.6 years since the last known evidence of Sirius still existing.
Closed: Hoping to reopen when it gets its stuff together.
Trivia: Wall Street was closed from 31 July 1914 in response to the European crisis. Limited trading at the clearinghouse was allowed from 12 August, at about five to seven thousand shares a day. Source: The Great Game, John Steele Gordon.
Currently Reading: Dark Lord Of Derkholm, Diana Wynne Jones.