. . . in 1971 I snapped this picture of my traveling companion Lang Clay.  We had a map, as you can see, but really no idea of how big Texas actually is.  We went a little nuts driving across it, wondering if we would ever get out.  We were also sleeping mostly at rest stops, under picnic tables in sleeping bags, unless it was raining, in which case we tried to sleep in my vehicle, a tiny sports car, though this was pretty much impossible.

The image was part of a project Lang was engaged in at the time to take, or have taken, a photograph of himself every day for a year.  In the end he missed only 25 days.

Lang has since become a successful and respected professional photographer — I’m still on the road, heading for another joint.

Photo © 1971 Langdon Clay



In my youth in Wilmington, North Carolina, where I was born, this was the place to go for bar-b-q.  It was where your grandparents took you for a special night out — grandparents who were just a generation removed from the farm, for whom the country cooking at Skinner and Daniels was an occasion for nostalgia.  The sign with the pig in fancy dress seemed magical to me as a child.

The place is gone, the grandparents are gone, the sign is gone, the 23 year-old youth in the baseball cap is gone — but not really . . .

[Photograph © 1973 Langdon Clay]

Click on the image to enlarge.