Hudson Valley ‘Landmarks’ Are Butt of Joke in Documentary Series
A spontaneous visit to the Hudson Valley made its way into the latest episode of a quirky documentary series.
If you haven't seen "How To With John Wilson" you're missing out. The documentary-style show blends thousands of hours of footage of everyday New York life with a humorous attempt to give advice on a wide range of topics.
This week's episode attempted to teach viewers how to be spontaneous. The show's narrator lamented about his inability to live in the moment and decided to throw caution to the wind and do something completely unplanned.
Unfortunately, the filmmaker quickly found out that being spontaneous does have some drawbacks. Deciding to take a spa day, Wilson heads to the Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz. With what appears to be a hidden camera, he documents an interaction with a staff member who tells him that the spa is completely booked up. The resort, which will be featured later in the episode, advises him to schedule ahead for next time. So much for spontaneity.
Undeterred, Wilson and his girlfriend look up what else there is to do in the area and the couple winds up visiting Kerhonkson to see the world's largest garden gnome. Well, at least it used to be the world's largest. It turns out that the roadside attraction is actually 1.5 feet shorter than the current record holder. The sign under the statue on Route 209 has been updated to declare the statue as "The original world's tallest," which I guess is accurate.
Anyway, Wilson and his wife stop to gawk at the gnome and realize that spontaneity can sometimes be a bit disappointing.
The show culminates with a spur-of-the-moment trip to Las Vegas where Wilson winds up stumbling across a convention for event planners. It's there where he winds up bumping into an employee of the Mohonk Mountain House, the same place that turned him away for not planning his spa day in advance.
In the end, Wilson learns from the group of professional planners that spontaneity isn't all it's cracked up to be.
If you haven't seen "How To With John Wilson" yet, start with season two, episode six. The half-hour show will give you a good idea of what the series is all about, and you'll get to see some local landmarks in the process. You can stream the series on HBO Max.