Road trips are a part of America’s fabric. Think of all the stories, through each generation, that take place on the road: “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” “The Grapes of Wrath,” “As I Lay Dying,” “Lolita,” “On the Road,” “The Road” (to name just a few classics). The open road has always been an outlet for America’s wanderlust, unfolding before its people as a frontier of discovery and imagination.
Of course, an hour into any trip, the road begins to lose its mystique.
When I was little, road trips meant being crammed in the back of a minivan with the other four Walsh children. Idleness eventually gave way to tickle fights, tickling escalated into violence, and violence led to Mom or Dad yelling.
“KNOCK IT OFF. I’LL PULL THIS DAMN CAR OVER.”
A mandatory ceasefire would force us to sit in tense silence until, invariably, my little sister would say she wasn’t feeling well. We’d watch her closely, using all of our psychic energy to ward off her mounting nausea, but my sister’s motion sickness was, and would remain, undefeated against our telekinesis.
“I’M GONNA THROW UP!”
“GET HER THE BUCKET!” (We always had a durable puke pail handy).
As if the splash and slop of her cascading vomit weren’t bad enough, the barfy miasma, amplified by the confines of our Honda prison, left the rest of us retching for the rest of the ride.
So road trips are not necessarily the stuff of fairy tales. But although road woes might be common, they can be altogether avoided if the travelers are committed to enjoying each moment. Their success has nothing to do with the destination and everything to do with the company. Good times, in other words, are a function not of the road trip but of the road trippers.
Harvard men’s basketball travels to face the Killer P’s this weekend on its toughest road trip of the season. Princeton and Philadelphia have always been nightmarish destinations for the Crimson. But Harvard, irrespective of the Quakers and Tigers, has the power to determine this weekend’s success through its own collective play and mindset. If Harvard digs deep and executes, it will take the reins of the Ivy League race.
On to the picks.
HARVARD (15-3, 4-0 Ivy) at PRINCETON (14-4, 2-0 Ivy)
Given The Crimson’s preview of this weekend’s games, I won’t dwell too long here. Princeton is the slight favorite as it’s home at Jadwin Gymnasium, where the Crimson has not won since 1989. I see a close contest, decided by one or two possessions, but Harvard eking out a signature Ivy win.
Pick: Harvard 67, Princeton 64
CORNELL (4-14, 0-4 Ivy) at YALE (9-9, 2-2 Ivy)