I know, I know, it's been a while. I've been traveling, I've been working and you've been cheating on me reading those other blogs. It's okay, I don't hate you as much as I hate myself for not writing.
So yes, I shot a movie in Bulgaria called Enemies Closer and now I'm back stateside. You can also catch me on Adult Swim's new show Black Dynamite on Sundays or check out my new graphic novel action comedy Tainted Love.
But, before you do any of that, will one of you please explain to Bulgarian White People that you don't just walk up to a Black man and touch his face. You don't let little Bulgarian kids run over, bite my ankle and scream, "Ooo Chocolaten!" I missed my Americans. When time permits all White Americans must tell the more authentic White Bulgarians the rules --
You can listen and dance to Black music. You can eat soul food or whatever kind of food Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles is... greasy coronary crudite, let's call it. What you can't do is walk up and touch a Black man's hair. It's not kosher, plus it's weird. You don't feed the animals at the zoo, do you?
It's just not done.
Bulgaria was an emotional time. It was a good time. Hopefully, it's great a movie. That's the part I can never be sure about. I wish I could guarantee enjoyment. No matter how hard you try that trick remains elusive.
That said, I come to you bearing gifts... or maybe poison. It depends on your perception. I have traveled from Bulgaria to Paris to New York to San Diego (Comicon was awesome BTW) to LA to Dallas to Sag Harbor and back again in the last three weeks. Along the way I came up with my top 20 travel tips. Some witty, some not. Enjoy and I promise not to be disappear for so long.
Top 20 Travel Trips from Orlando Jones
1. At 30k feet compression shorts, socks and shirts are your friend - They wick away moisture, are anti-microbial for anti-stink, seamless (so there's no chafe) and help increase oxygen and blood flow. (I prefer zensah to under armor)
2. Never Check - Don't check any of the following your toothbrush, your prescription medications, your deodorant, your warm jacket, clean underwear, t-shirt and socks.
3. Avoid Jet Lag - When you arrive at your destination, no matter how tired you are, stay up as late as possible. Push past the point of exhaustion, crash and wake up on local time. Always works for me.
4. Internet Addiction Is Expensive/Not - Luxury hotels will charge you for it. Budget hotels won't. Any new 4g phone can create a hot spot. It's approximately 20 bucks a month and by far the fastest most available option.
5. Don't Starve - Bring snacks. "Just fruit" or "Just Veggies" are awesome. The title "Just..." says it all. Any restaurant that posts its menu in more than three languages has horrible food. Can yo momma cook, authentic Italian, Japanese, German and Indian food? NO, she can't. And neither can the chef at the six language restaurant.
6. Economy Class Seats Are Not created Equal - Decide what's important to you, find a website with airline seating diagrams and book as early as possible. Seat Guru is very helpful.
7. Everybody Hates Somebody - If the locals don't like Texans, Black People, or Americans don't panic. Be Canadian. Nobody hates Canadians. It's a lot like drinking alcohol to get drunk. This tactic just works.
8. Copy Your ID - I can't tell you how many times this has saved me in a pinch. Remember, in person they may not want to accept your color copies. On the phone or online as long as you have the correct info, they will accept anything. And yes, I have called a restaurant from outside and bought food with my lost credit card.
9. Facebook Is For Emergencies - That's what FaceBook is for. Help is less than 3 degrees of separation away. Identify someone close to where you will be. Store their info in several places. If you don't want to hang with them, just send a note explaining how you're Patrice's friend and you MIGHT be coming to their area sometime soon.
10. 170 Bucks Solves Problems - One hundred dollar bill, one fifty and one twenty. Almost every low level criminal, police officer or security worker in any country will turn a blind eye for one or all three of these bills. Do it quick and walk away.
11. Border control agents DO NOT GET or APPRECIATE sarcasm. Period. End of Story.
12. No Clothes You Need To Iron - Hell, don't even buy clothes that require ironing.
13. No McDonald's - I don't care what you say... McNuggets are McMystery Meat and McNasty. If you need fast food, keep it simple stupid. Hummus, guacamole, Greek Salad, fruit, nuts.
14. Put Shoes On - Do not use the lavatory on an airplane in your bare feet.
15. Skip The IMAX Movie - They cost a fortune and every IMAX film in an aquarium or planetarium is the SAME. It's literally the same movie being shown in different locations.
16. Pack It - Stop reading this and pack it now. You know yourself better than anyone else in the world. Get the Valtrex or Pepto-Bismol now. If you throw up in front of your boyfriend and he smells it, he can't kiss that mouth. DON'T ASK ME WHY? HE JUST CAN'T DO IT! If you need it pack it. Now.
17. Embrace The Space Pak System - It saves me time and space and I don't need a vacuum cleaner. Check out Flight 001 for more info.
18. Everyone Loses Cords - I always travel with back up chargers for phone, computer etc. Invest. You won't be sorry.
19. Get Cash From An ATM - Don't exchange money before leaving home or at the airport. The best exchange rate is using your card at an ATM.
20. Check Out The Rotary Club - Rotary Club International offers free travel and accommodations for businesspeople on group study exchanges. You don't even have to be a member.
So there you have it. 20 tips that have gotten me out of a few jams and made some of the annoyance of travel less... annoying. What are some of your travel tips? Tell me about them in the comments or wherever you're doing your social media thang.
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