I've only been to Kent State once, and that was . . . 15 or 16 years ago. (Yeesh!) Anyhow, I'd never had to drive myself out there, either, so it was quite an adventure to map out a route from the western suburbs to the hinterlands of Portage County. I made the trip in about an hour, but that was mostly because I took the turnpike. It was a little disconcerting how fast everyone was driving on it. I mean, I speed on a regular basis, and I'm used to doing 75 or so on the interstate and passing people like they're standing still. On the turnpike, I was still doing 75 or so, but people were passing me like I was standing still. It was a little weird.
I got completely lost once I got into Kent, though. I was looking for Ray's, and somehow I ended up on the Haymaker Parkway and missed the turn for Franklin Street. I went around the block a few times and finally found it. Good thing I allowed about a half hour of "getting lost time," as my mom likes to call it. I had solicited the advice of the nearest KSU alum before I left, and Cathy had recommended the Mac-n-Cheese bites at Ray's. You wouldn't think that breaded and deep-fried macaroni and cheese would be good, but it's actually beyond good. She also gave the thumbs-up to Ray's Hot Nachos (since they resemble the beloved River Nachos that are no longer on the menu at the Rocky River Brewing Company).
I managed not to get lost on the trip from dinner to the show, though. The gym, like the one at Akron U, seems roughly the size of my high school gym. We were in the middle of the bleachers to Bob's left — fairly close, but definitely out of heckling distance. The show was hilarious, but seemed short. He's a fast talker, though, so maybe he crammed in twice as much material? Maybe I was just spoiled by Kevin Smith's "Hey, I got all night — Let's chat!" approach. And, since I still had to drive an hour home and get up for work the next day, I suppose it was just as well that we were filing out of the gym at 9:30. The trip home was fairly uneventful, except I had to stop to put gas in the car. Sticker shock!