Once that whole basketball-thing is done and over with, you’ll probably soon realize that the weather outside isn’t as frightful as it has been during the period of time scientists now refer to as “winter,” and then comes the hard part: What should you do? Jog? ha ha ha ha… why, it just so happens there’s plenty of Griswold-esque adventures to be had (and on the cheap, too), which should make the return of your daily desk-jockeying less of a suicidal enterprise.
And there’s nothing like a good day trip to erase the pain of your precious bracket’s epic destruction…
- Like any state with more counties than common sense, Kentucky boasts a sizeable number of small, idiosyncratic towns scattered between rolling farms, narrow roads, and innumerable churches. For a solid day of windowshopping, hitch a ride to Paris (ours, not theirs), whose compact downtown is perfect for a stroll and the expenditure of capital. If you’re into the supernatural, trek to Wickliffe, whose famous Indian mounds are, well, mounds of dirt made by Native-Americans to contact the dreaded Cthulhu to stop the encroachment of white settlers. Or why not boogie on down to Central City, home of one of the Everly Brothers, which is more exciting than it sounds.
- To hell with the beach; they’re all covered in broken heroin needles and homeless people anyway. Western Kentucky’s gorgeous Land Between the Lakes & Kenlake can soothe whatever ails you, provided you know how to pitch a tent and/or shoot fish with a longbow like the ‘Nuge, and minus the hassles of a popular national coastline.
- Speaking of nature, the Commonwealth’s got you covered on multiple fronts: Hit up Cave City (and badass Mammoth Cave) if you want to experience one of the best weird times you’ll ever have above- or underground; Jefferson Memorial Forest, located in southwest Jefferson County, is the largest municipal urban forest in the US, so it behooves you to go hug a tree there at least once; and of course Red River Gorge, which has solicited many a vision quest from seekers in the Bluegrass and beyond (Just don’t fall off a cliff and die… seriously).
- Take in the sights, ambiance, and fallout of modern-day Chernobyl. Just don’t touch anything or stay for too long — unless you like cancer.
- Also, if you’re into more of a post-apocalypse-themed vacay, why not Centralia, Pennsylvania? The town’s population has steadily dwindled due to an underground coal mine fire that started in 1962 and has been burning ever since. The streets are cracked, toxic smoke billows from the ground, and at night Dick Cheney retires to his lair and watches “America’s Next Top Model,” drinking a glass of kitten’s blood.
- How’z about astrally projecting yourself to a destination of your choosing? It’s practically free. Just sit in a chair and, uh, imagine. [WARNING: Red pill, good. Blue pill, better]
- Start a garden, because when the dollar finally collapses, turnips will make great anti-hobo weapons.
- Oh, and there’s a horse race soon, so you could also do that. The best part? No shirt required!