Around you are all the things you really need. (For me: good company, music, something to write with, and crappy coffee sweetened with those flavored creamers they sell at gas stations.) Outside you is a catalogue of everything else. Roadside oddities, disagreeable weather, small-town businesses, fast food conglomerates, farm animals--it's all there to be perused and imaginatively expounded upon, while you are safely sandwiched between upright seat and glass window. The ideal car ride length falls in between two and four hours. Any less and your thought process is brought to a halt right after it kicks up; any more and your legs begin to cramp.
On the way up to Tahoe, I saw more cows than I could count, a mini golf course snowed over, and lots of creatively-situated houses (tucked into a nook on a mountain, extending off the side of a barn). I also made everyone play the license plate game, in which you have to think of a word that has the same letters, in order, as a specific plate. PZE: Puzzle. CNQ: Conquer!
Job hunt update: had an interview with Trader Joe's. Did not get hired. Things are not going well.