I loved Condon's third book (My 'Dam Life), so it seemed natural to pick up a copy of his account of a US cross-country road trip to read while I embarked on the same trip in reverse. Unfortunately, this earlier effort from Condon t is much more labored and stale than his account of three years living in Amsterdam. After quitting his advertising job, he and an artist friend fly from their native Australia to Canada and cross from Montreal into the US to embark on that most mythic of journeys: the cross-country road trip. Passing through places like NYC, DC, Virginia, Nashville, Mississippi, New Orleans, Texas, Santa Fe, Vegas, LA, SF, and finally flying up to Seattle, they attempt to imbibe a campy version of the American experience. The observations on America are only very occasionally insightful—most of the time Condon is too busy reworking cliché into punch line to do any real observing. The reason My 'Dam Life was so good is that Condon's scattershot one-liners are mixed into a real narrative about trying to make a new life in a foreign city. Here there is simply a choppy travel journal with joke after joke, many of which aren't that funny. There are so many aspects of America that deserve sending up, it's a shame Condon doesn't reach beyond the obvious targets. Which is not to say there aren't some really funny moments or episodes, just that they are few and far between. It also doesn't help that he draws no distinction between events that really happened on his trip, and events that he makes up partially or entirely. For the true American road experience, rent Monte Hellman's classic film Two Lane Blacktop.