Black crowned night heron © Robert Sommers 2023

Thursday, September 3, 2009


It's the late summer and much of Southern California is unfortunately burning once again. You can see the dark smog layer of ash even at our somewhat removed location. San Diego County has been spared by this early onslaught of fires but the season is just starting and we are not out of the woods by any means.
I saw my latter day saint, extremely anti environmentalist, ex fire chief friend Milt yesterday at lunch at Chalet Liquor and he told me that all of the old weather patterns were gone forever and this heat and dryness is what was on tap for the future. I managed to squelch my smile - this is the same guy who loved to bash Al Gore. The typical drill for a conservative - deny, obfuscate, belittle and then eventually accede to the newfound reality as being fait accompli and out of our mortal hands.
I have been fighting the bronchial thing and the always tired malaise but also trying hard to stay productive. Still on antibiotics and waiting further testing for some exotic and exciting new malady's. I drove to Temecula in the morning and hit the antique shops but there was nothing there that rated a second glance. Recognized things that had hung on the walls since the Carter Administration. Did find a wonderful root beer selection at Granny's Attic. I told them I was a Stewarts, IBC kind of guy and asked them to point me to a nice hand crafted root beer and I grabbed something called Spleicher that I think that was very good. It was that or something called Red Devil. Not too much of the sarsaparilla taste that can be off putting in high doses.
I haven't seen my wife for a few days and thought about going home but she was tired from her trip and taking a nap so I headed over to the coast to do a little more shopping and hit the beach. I have been manning the farm in her absence. All of the animals managed to stay alive although I am told that the plants may not have been so lucky. The cats got a lot of new found privileges while she was away but we have agreed to keep it our little secret.
I am told that I have lost some weight in the last month. Being alone will do that to you. When you are married, you don't turn down a meal even if you are hungry, or risk never being fed again. When you are in solitary, you eat when you are hungry, which is not often for me in this heat. I tried to go through a basic honey do list in her absence, managing to install a light and to short out the house trying to install a second light. This meant that the animals and I did without A.C. for a few days until Alton the A.C .man showed me that I hadn't pushed the breaker all the way over. Twenty dollars please, could have been a lot worse. Kitchen faucet still broken, I have foresworn handiwork and will call in the professionals.
I found a nice painting by a guy I really like, Joseph Earl Schrack in Oceanside in the afternoon, making the trip maybe financially worthwhile. Then I stopped by my friend Sheebz' house and we made our way to the beach. We went to the Subway Sandwiches joint in a rundown mall in Encinitas first which is located next to a neighborhood derelict bar, Mr. Peabody's. The drunken guys splayed in front of the saloon were either hopeless cases or writers just getting material for their next book or possibly a combination of the two. The immigrant girls at the Subway laughed when I asked if they were ever bothered by the Borachos and said sometimes.
I like to go to Stonesteps beach in Encinitas and have hung out there for over thirty years. It has always been a "cooler" beach and demographically a bit older. Shawn and Ricardo and Bigdave had an epic house near bye in the old days. Scene of much revelry, not quite Caligula. Never forget the inhabitants skateboarding over the wooden floors. They had a great surf contest at Stone Steps in the old days where contestants had to drink a quart of beer between heats. Saw Donald Takayama in an epic battle of surfboard destruction with another guy at the end of a contest once.
Anyhow, the water had to be over 76 degrees yesterday, the warmest and calmest and most relaxing swim in memory. Fish were jumping out of the water right behind us. We stayed out for at least an hour and watched the paddle surfers sweep the ocean. We laughed our butts off and Sheebz asked me if I was doing a Brett Farve thing with the blog and told me that people would soon tire if I kept flip flopping out of retirement. Hey, I do this for me. Lot of time to kill between sales and I need to fill time and keep my brain semi agile. But a great question. She won't read the fiction either.
We headed over to Zenbu for a fancy expensive drink. I blogged about the place a few months ago, the joint where you pick your fish out of the tank to devour. We looked a little ratty, coming from the beach, but managed to slip into the chi chi dark restaurant mostly unnoticed. Sitting at the bar, the so hip bartender asked if we wanted menus. When I asked if they were in braille, he shot me a dirty look. The lone candle wasn't up to snuff in the darkness. I had a vodka thing with ginger, cilantro and lemongrass that tasted better than it sounded, Sheebz went for a lemon drop. I ordered the sliced steak that was accompanied by the six hundred degree rock which you cooked on top of with olive oil and ponzu and it was really good, not to mention dramatic. Sheebz pointed out that Mr. hip bartender with the soul patch had the start of a little bald spot coming. Shame.
Afterwards we headed over to VG's for a little dessert. VG's is the best doughnut shop in the world and a Cardiff institution. I had a mini eclair but Sheila showed me what true decadence really was, a raised glazed that was then dipped in chocolate. I only had a couple guilty bites, I swear.

Sheila noticed that I was listening to the dead on Sirius Radio and asked me if I wasn't over them. I have to admit that even after a 30 year passion, listening 24/7 will pretty much kill you. I got sick of them occasionally when Jerry was alive so to listen to them, along with their bastard kin Ratdog all the time now is a bit deadly. I like 60's on 6, Underground Garage, Deep Tracks, try to mix it up a bit.
My buddy Cliff Stokes went to his final reward last week after a long illness. His memorial is at the same time as Tony's so I might not make it. My friends are dropping like flies, I tell you. Cliff and his late wife Avis were true friends, I remember when we were lucky to get ten of us together for a meeting of the Fallbrook Democratic Club. Loved baseball, taught at the high school for years. Raised a passel of boys.
They busted the tattoo and piercing shop across the way this week. Paper says someone there had an ounce of heroin and a bit of methamphetamine. According to the local paper, the owner slipped out the back and was caught in some neighboring apartment. I thought that the traffic looked too good to be true.

I went in for the dreaded medial buckle 14 root canal this morning but thankfully my dentist friend just wants to watch it for a little longer. Guy just walked into the store, gonna paint a sign that says Impeach Obama and show up at the Townhall tonight. I didn't say a word. Country has turned into the Hatfields and the McCoys and it would take too long to talk sense with the old fella.

Check out the hot button I put on today where climatologists show that the arctic is warmer than it has been in 2000 years. You just know that the next thing you will see is some farmer in North Dakota, after the first cold snap, scoffing at Global Warming. Stupidity is seemingly a prized commodity these days.

No game on the horizon. Ciao.

1 comment:

grumpy said...

my condolences to Brett and his brother on their dad's passing...i'm putting VG's on my "to visit" list...next time you're down that way, try the Spicy Mayan gelato at Chuao, in the Lumberyard in Encinitas; it's to die for...you were right about Melanie Oudin, she's making an amazing run at the Open...thanks for restoring comments...