Down by the Beach
Since Sunday, Nicky and I drove up to Malibu three times. Yeah, we were beach bums three times in the last four days with Zuma Beach as our intended destination. That location makes me happy and is one of my favorite places in California. I have been waiting for months for this time of the year, which gives me a chance to relax and recharge and get ready for an all out mental brawl and physically demanding assignment. And the best part? The beach has been empty in the days leading up to Memorial Day weekend.
The first trip to Zuma on Sunday featured blah weather, not so great for basking in the sun, but perfect for working out. The weather improved on Monday, but conditions were far from ideal. We skipped Zuma on Tuesday because Nicky had a doctor's appointment and I had to finish up an assignment. We headed back to the beach on Wednesday and the weather was fantastic and the best it had been all week.
We developed a routine where we worked out along the beach and jog up and down before we settled in on the beach and did next to nothing. We always seem to attract a lot of sketchy folks up in Zuma. Lots of freaks hang out in Malibu. One old guy wore just shorts and a headband. He carried around two small dumb bells and ran in place and did exercise in front of our parked car. That lasted like two hours.
I also caught one guy jerking off in the bathroom. I was taking a leak in the new flush-less urinal when I heard groaning. I thought someone was taking a shit, but he was standing up and clearly whacking his pud. I never got a look at the person. I pissed as fast as I could and left. I told Nicky that I think I caught a masturbator and she thought that was gross. I noticed that a large group of high school kids were laying out on the beach near the bathroom. I suspected that the guy was a horny high school kid who couldn't handle seeing all of his female classmates in bikinis, or the guy was a pedophile getting off on young people wearing very little clothing.
Anyway... the beach is one of my favorite places to read. I like to read, soak up the words, and gaze out to sea to let them sink in... the words, the messages, the themes, the stories, the images. Everything.
After the last few months, my brain is in deep reading and editing mode. Still haven't picked up Lost Vegas, but I edited ten upcoming Truckin' stories including two contributions from yours truly about a pickle factory worker in Norway and a gaggle of speed freaks down under. The other eight contributions were top notch and I'm feeling very confident in the next few issues.
My other blogs languish during the previous four summers. I always make a promise to write more, but in the end, Tao of Poker and other freelance assignments take priority since that's what pays the bills. I don't feel warm and fuzzy about neglecting my other sites, but it's sort of been the case than Tao of Pauly, Truckin', and Coventry are regularly maintained ten months out of the year.
I really hoped to change that philosophy starting last year. Coventry was held together by my friends' contributions anchored by the Joker's leadership. My friends also helped me out with Truckin' and sent me stories in advance so I had more time to work on them. Alas, Tao of Pauly still suffered. I simply don't have enough time and energy.
I attempted to write more on Tao of Pauly in the last few months in order to make up for the time I'd be away over the summer. With the WSOP and Phish tour to keep me occupied from June through August, most if not all of those stories will be published off of this site. Who knows, maybe I'll maintain that "ten minute" principle and post here every day, or do a lot of cross-posting.
The ebbs and flows of blogging. Sometimes I wished I had just one monster site.
I finished Shock Doctrine and sections of the book about disaster capitalism were eye-opening. I'm currently re-reading an old classic that I first read when I was in 8th grade. Actually, I'm in the middle of two classics... one very short and the other lengthy. I've been skimming one while devouring the other. I know that once the WSOP begins, I won't have the chance to pick up a book, unless I need something to read during my morning shit.
I had a bet with Nicky on Tuesday night. The Lakers were playing the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals. I was rooting for the Nuggets and even wore a Nuggets t-shirt that the Joker bought for me. Nicky was confident that her hometown Lakers would win that she bet me... with the point spread. The Nugs were getting six points and that was a lock because I thought that the Nugs had a chance to win outright, let alone getting six points. We settled on a fair wager. The Nugs blew the lead and lost, but the Lakers failed to cover, so I won the bet... which was a trip to In-N-Out Burger once the game ended. Nicky had to drive me to get a double-double and it was delicious.
Yes, that's the second time I ate at In-N-Out this week. We also had a second earthquake that I barely felt. We had two 4.0+ quakes inside a 48 hour period. The epicenter was similar to the one on Sunday night. Hmmmmm.... maybe my trips to In-N-Out is causing the quakes?