Surfing Vancouver Island  

Foondroppings 07  

Unsurf Report: Daze of Desperation

Wed, 27 May 1998

Date: Memorial Day Weekend Plus one 5/23-26

Location: Foonbunker Beach, Delmarva Peninsula

Conditions: Zero to dick high surf: variable depending on tides and wind.

Temps: Water 55-58, Air 65-75 depending on sun.

Crowds: None to speak of, but believe it or not some breaks had guys out.

Weather: From cool and blustery to sunny/warm and nice. Evening T-Storms to mess with the winds which alternated onshore and offshore.

I had no hopes and no expectations for surf this weekend, but I did get a surprise. Using the liberal definition, there were "waves" by some people's standards and the twice a year, weekend warrior, or traditional desperate Right Coast surfers were on 'em whenever they peaked their little crests over any sand bar in town. From high atop the Bunker Balcony I was amazed at how many longboarders were willing to brave the 55 degree water with minimal equipment, even just trunks, to catch some ridiculously small waves.

There were a whole bunch of beginners in town this weekend with bright spanking new equipment or rentals and these groms charged anything and everything. Mid to low tide was best, with high tides showing almost nothing. I spent a total of 6 hours over the weekend studying the two sandbars and the rip channel that front the Bunker beach. At super low tide I went out and walked and waded along the bars and channel to map out precisely my take off landmarks in accordance with the extremities of the bars. If nothing changes (see below for news on that) these two sandbars and channel represent one of the better sandbar set-ups I've seen in awhile. Both bars dump right and left handers into the rip channel that is about 50 feet wide. The channel breaks too but less frequently and at high tides not at all. The sandbars are about 50 feet wide and stretch for quite aways up and down the beach. I've already got line-up landmarks checked for the different swells sizes and conditions.

Passing on the Stoke: A man older and much stockier than I held a clinic all weekend for four teenagers who were determined to learn to surf this weekend. He worked them mercilessly, even had them paddling around when there were no waves and going in the cold wind with just rashguards and trunks. He was fully wetsuited himself though I don't know where you buy a wetsuit that fits someone built like an oil drum. He'd take each boy and tutor them in the water, then stand on shore and bark suggestions and encouragement. When the boys were all thoroughly exhausted, he'd gather them on the shore in a group and talk technique, then send them out again. He would do this relentlessly most of each day. I was both appalled and amazed that the boys would keep going at it.

But by Monday all of the boys were standing up somewhat on their new longboards, for a few seconds at least and some with parallel stance. But they had mastered the problems of finding and catching waves. The ultra small waves were ideal for this type of learning, at times they could literally launch themselves by just standing next to their boards. Whoever the man was, I have to give him the dedication trophy of the weekend. He hung in there for hours with each kid, drilling them on popups on the beach, then sending them into the meager surf to try it. When they all finally trudged off the beach on Monday, there were four very happy, but very tired and sore kids.

Fashion Notes: Don't know if you've seen this hideous Dockers commercial with the four khaki clad surfers walking down the beach. They slip out of the pants then proceed to rip and tear of some waves for 10 short seconds. Then they come back in and set up their shortboards as ironing boards until one gestures that because they are all wearing the new wrinkle free Dockers, they won't ever have to iron their dockers again! I was so insulted by this ad, I have vowed to donate all my dockers to any kid who wants them because..........

It came to my attention this weekend that the local grom population have given up surftrunks and are now wearing cutoffs made of their Dads old Dockers. These are usually so baggy they have to cinch them with a belt. This is a disappointing development in surf style as far as I'm concerned and some butt ugly trunks for the kids. But since I'm not wearing Dockers anymore, they can have mine.

Through many hours of astute observation it has come to my attention that the young women of our beach are fed up with uncomfortable or revealing swimwear. Many have given up the thongish, high cut, tushy showing suits for reasonably cut and comfortable suits that they can actually do stuff in like walk, without showing off too much. Congratulations ladies (This is another black day in fashion at my beach) you've learned a valuable lesson in clothing. It is better to feel good than look good.

Pending Disaster: Considering the promising sandbar set-up at the Bunker beach this year, I was none too happy to see the massive amounts of sand sculpting and moving equipment being set up just north of us this weekend. The local paper claims yet another beach replenishment program will start this week in an effort to expand and enhance the city's public beaches. rah, rah, rah. There goes my sandbars. The last time this happened the replenishment efforts wiped out all the near shore sand bars making the town beaches one big giant shore dump for a few years (Surff thinks that's all we ever have had) But as subsequent storms come and snatch the sand back off the beaches, the near shore bars begin to reform and make waves. I'm depressed. I know the reason for the beach replenishment, but I was hoping for at least one season with waves in front of my place.

The good news is I've already accepted invitations to visit some friends on the Outer Banks this summer and Fall, and then there's always Wrightsville Beach to visit. All we really need is some swell. Time to fire up the sacrificial surf shrine again.


Theme Song?

Mon, 01 Jun 1998

MrsFoon looked up from her heavy reading (People Magazine) and said, "Do you have a theme song?" Without hesitation I answered, "Yes, but why do you ask?" It seems some character on one of her TV shows was advised by her shrink to "get a theme song." I presume to find inspiration in the lyrics. That's all well and good for many who use, "I will Survive", or "Hold on" or the current Chumba Wamba song "Tumble-something". But my theme song is an instrumental and has no lyrics, yet it's meaning and inspiration to me is just as strong.

I first heard "Freedomland" by the Yellow Jackets several years ago. It's a catchy, hook laden jazz piece that's both upbeat and engaging. Plus, the four piece group has achingly good musicians, so they make it sound very easy. As a drummer I can tell you it's not. I was unprepared for the fact that the song has played on a non stop loop in my subconscious since the day I heard it first. Though I've listened to the actual recording hundreds of times, my mental replays have numbered in the thousands. I can recall every bar and every note and can summon it instantly in my mind. I have no idea why this particular song does this, it's just that I find immeasurably pleasing to hear it. The one thing that does bother me is that the drumming part requires skills I do not nor ever will have, so I can only aspire to play the way William Kennedy plays.

In the water I have another tune which I find pleasing to play in my mind while I wait and ride. "In the Pocket" by Dave Weckl is also an inspiration for my riding. Though the meaning of the title is different for surfers and drummers, I prefer to imagine the surfers' interpretation when I'm surfing. The song is another instrumental by a not well known drummer who took a bunch of his studio buds into cut a wide open brass and drums driven tune that gets the juices flowing when I surf.

So when God calls me to my final reward, I've ordered MrsFoon to play both songs at whatever memorial service she can get my friends to come to (I told her to offer food and have a door prize raffle for my collection of Hawaiian shirts) I imagine that while they are sitting there listening to these songs and remembering me they will probably be thinking, "Geez, we always knew this guy was a whack job, when can we get outta here and go surfing." I'll be where ever I wind up counting down to start playing the first bars of Freedomland, realizing a lifelong dream.

MrsFoon's theme song will probably be "Stand by Your Man". (Until he's dead, then it's party time!!)

What's yours?


Looks are deceiving

June 03 1998

I rode the Washington subway today. The tourists are in town big time. God, the human species is a multipattern quilt of looks and textures. I love to people watch and I make all kinds of assumptions based on how people look. We all do. Women make different assumptions than men. In a private poll among MrsFoon's girlfriends I once found out none would even consider a guy shorter than they were. In that group at least, size did matter. Women may even make judgments about men based on the size of their hands or feet, though I don't know why? (wink, wink)

Men do the same thing, even more. Many form all sorts of opinions about women, based on the size of their.......ummmmm....intellect! I know several men who wouldn't even consider a woman who couldn't say, "I prefer to go topless," in at least three languages. (Geez, I must be a masochist, wait til MrsFoon sees this :)

This group does the same thing based on information we read. Few of us know how well each other surfs. We make assumptions based on what we read and the credibility of that information. I've never claimed to be any great surfer, but I've had some really good rides and fun experiences. Most of you have too. I think for the most part that comes out in what we write.

I'm sure we all size up the new guys as they paddle out (or post). We make assumptions by the way they handle themselves (with or without poise and experience) about how well they may surf. But without the proof of viewing their skill, we have little or no way of actually knowing. I once saw a youngish, clean-cut Kelly Slater walk on the beach at Hatteras with just a board and a towel. I wasn't aware of who he really was until later, I just thought he was another average college jock, until I saw him ride.

So what's the point? You older guys may not want to prejudge the radical surfdude, with neon hair and pierced everything, outfitted with a dozen potatochip boards racked on his tricked out CJ5. He may just be able to surf rings around you. And you young hot shots out there, don't dismiss the fat, old guy with the bald spot, huffing and puffing to paddle his old longboard out to the lineup. He may know more about wave selection and position than you'll ever know and snatch the set wave right out from under your nose. I know this because both things have happened to me. :)


"A fool sees not the same trees that a wise man sees."
-William Blake

It's goin Off in aisle 3

Fri, 05 Jun 1998

It was my turn to cook, so I was at the local mega Market to buy provisions to grill burgers. Cruising the produce section I picked up some lettuce and some local tomatoes and started to move toward the fresh fruits to size up some ingredients for a fresh fruit salad (I take your advice about eating healthier very seriously).

I normally don't even notice the background music that plays in stores, unless it's really bad. Most times it's something really repulsive like a Montivani cover of the Doors, "Light My Fire". This is supposed to lull the comatose and over-stimulated Boomer Generation into thinking their lifestyles are still rooted in the counterculture, as they buy dozens of packages of processed foods and dump them into the minivan with the two sullen teenagers and the labrador retriever.

But just recently, whoever programs the background tunes at my mega Market is starting to take liberties with the play list (and my head). I've started to hear original versions of songs from genuine jazz, pop, and country artists. Nothing overt, of course. Wouldn't want to have some prozac-pounded soccer Mom dropping her eggs in aisle 5.

Standing in front of the kiwis and valencia oranges I was beginning to wonder, "When the hell do the Bing Cherries come on line??? Did El Nino ruin the crop of one of my favorite fruits this year??" As I was squeezing some kiwis all of a sudden I was aware of an extremely pleasing and familiar song playing in the background. It was the original version of the Sandals theme song from the Endless Summer. Instantly I was transported to sublime hours of joy and freedom as I pictured in my mind all the great places August and Hynson went to in that movie. From the US to Africa, and the South Pacific on to Hawaii and places in between.

I don't know about you but the rides allegedly filmed at Cape St.Francis (rumored to be actually J-Bay) were a defining moment for me and many of my surf buds. We could watch those rides for hours. And now there is a suggestion that the actual rides were not nearly as long as originally claimed; that Bruce Brown really spliced a whole bunch of 'em together and boasted they were one ride. BOLLOCKS!! I really don't care. To watch those guys ride those beautiful waves was a dream vision that most of us will never realize. But essentially, that's what a fantasy is. The sheer beauty of those scenes is forever etched in the minds of many people. Never to be duplicated, but who cares.

"Sir? Sir, is that a good one?" Some lady was standing in front of me looking very inquisitively up at my face.

"Uh, excuse me?" I blurted. She smiled and said, "Well you were squeezing that kiwi and had this radiant smile on your face, I was just wondering if they were particularly good today?" I blushed and put the kiwi down. "No," I offered. "I was just listening to the song they are playing just now and had some pleasant memories."

"Oh, what is it?" She asked. When I told her she got a peculiar look on her face put brightened up when she recalled having seen the movie for rent at the local video store.

"Is it just about surfing?" She wondered.

"No not really. It's about freedom, and humor and beauty and fun." I said.

"Sounds good," as she picked up the kiwi I had put down. "Maybe I get it tonight for the kids."

Oh yeah, it's goin off in aisle 3 all right. And I'm heading for the beach.

I probably should have posted this to the "you know you're jonesing" thread.

When squeezing kiwis and hearing surf music is the best session you've had in weeks.


Death of a Sandbar

Mon, 08 Jun 1998

I didn't know it very long, but I knew it well. After 4 nice sessions in middlin to good surf and a walkabout on a super low tide afternoon, I'd pretty much mapped the luscious wide, and smooth strip of sand that fronted the Foonbunker. I was jonesing for a good swell to try out it's left hander that dumped into the deep and dangerous rip current that lurked nearby.

Friday night, after staying too long at party I didn't want to be at (though the food was superb) I declared to MrsFoon and an out of town guest, I had ocean lust and had to drive to the beach. We all clambered into the truck and spent 3 hours listening to 60s RnR during the ride. The traffic was very light and the long dark roads sped under the wheels making me somewhat introspective. I had an ominous feeling after hearing the Doors, "This is the End."

I knew the surf forecast was bleak, but the weekend weather report had promised a cool and refreshing two days. I thought maybe we'd get lucky. Arriving at 2:00 am, I was totally unprepared for the shock that struck me as I motored up the hurricane shutters at the bunker. Spread out before me was a nightmare of sound and motion as a giant ant farm of workers from the Beach Replenishment Project toiled non-stop through the night to murder my beloved sandbar.

The beach was lit up like daylight from giant kliegs and the headlights from 4 huge Caterpillar tractors that move ceaselessly back and forth up and down the beach in front. The roar of powerful diesels, the clanking of tractor tracks grating and screeching in the sand, the incessant beeping of the backup signals from the tractors (I'm talkin loud and irritating BEEP BEEP BEEEP BEEEEP BEEEEEP BEEEEEP BEEEEEEEEP!!!!) and the stench of diesel exhaust guaranteed there would be no sleep at the bunker that night. I apologized to my guest, put her in a bedroom at the other side of the building from the noise, and fixed her a night-cap with the kick of a mule (151 Rum and OJ) hoping it would put her out of her misery. I whipped up a mug of Irish Coffee, grabbed a bag of doublestuff Oreos, put on some late night, high volume, heavy metal station and settled down on the balcony to watch the end of a dream.

In fact, the process of Beach Replenishment is amazing. From a sweep barge and pumping platform a few miles out in the ocean, a huge pipe connects them to a system of 36 inch steel pipes along the beach. It is a miracle of modern technology. Running two legs of these giant pipes on the beach, the force of the sand and water being pumped to beach creates a huge fountain of spewage about 15 feet high. The water conveys the sand onto the beach and runs off, the remaining new sand is moved and sculpted by the goddamn tractors into a nice new w i d e beach. Twice as wide as the old one, and there in lies the problem. The noise is deafening and the crew works round the clock. The sand piles up, the tractors go back and forth and back and forth. The surveyors move around with their little poles and lasers checking the height of the sand. I cry silently into my coffee.

By glorious dawn, the nightmare is almost over. The pipes are extended down the beach, the noise is still there, the spewing fountain of sand and water can still be seen, and the tractors and fuel trucks can still be heard. But I am now looking at a massive expanse of newly groomed sand that seems to stretch to the horizon. It is perfect, except for the zillion tractor tracks that give it a nice textured appearance. Without any sleep, I grab a straight cup of coffee and trudge down to look at my new beach.

As I walk along the water's edge, even though it's almost high tide, I am amazed at the precision with which the crew have doubled the size of the beach. Poles with pink flags are arranged in ever decreasing heights along the beach to create a precise surface that is exactly 16 feet below the line of the dune that the crew has also created. Thousands of newly dredged sea mussels gasp in the air on the surface, wondering what kind of drug induced Disney nightmare ride they've taken, sucked from their breeding beds in the middle of the night to be jettisoned along a 4 mile tunnel of pipe, only to be flung in air and then crushed by a 10 ton tractor.

I know the reason for this replenishment, all the arguments have been hashed and rehashed in the local papers. The town is the beach and without it, it would cease to exist. Long live the beach. And it will. The state and county are already budgeting for future and necessary replenishment, scheduled at 3-5 year intervals. They know it's a Sisyphean task (look it up you meatheads) that will and must be done, until someday Huey says, "Enough!!!" and sends a storm that will wipe the slate clean and destroy the island. (I hope I'm not around when that happens).

As I stand at the water's edge, the sun just barely peeking up over the horizon, I look at the new and beautiful beach. A young couple has brought down their early rising children who are already squealing in delight and playing in the new fluffy sand. In the distance I hear the cacophony of sound as the tireless machines perform their duty. I look back at the Foonbunker and stare. Slowly, through the fatigue and disgust of the night's events my senses tell me the real truth. At that very spot, I am standing on what was yesterday the outer edge of my favorite sandbar. It now exists somewhere about 10 feet below me, dormant, buried, and I hope, Pissed as shit. My only hope is that an early season storm comes and takes back about a third of the precious sand that was snatched away from the ocean. Otherwise this season will be spent logging a lot of hours in the truck, looking for waves and visiting friends in other places.

I spit what was left of my tepid coffee out and trudge off the beach with a really bad taste in my mouth.

Save your flames about property owners like me and all that shit. I've heard it all before and I'm not in the mood right now.

Frustrated Foon

Town and Country

Tue, 09 Jun 1998

Many years ago, my next door neighbor Brian used to own one of these road whales. It had the plastic "woody-grain" side panels that began peeling off before the final payments were made. The Town and Country Station wagon by General Motors was quite possibly the biggest, fattest load of steel on the highway during its heyday. No mileage to speak of, perpetually in disrepair, always something going wrong with it, yet you could carry six guys and their boards with the thing comfortably. You could also wedge a full size mattress in the back for road trips. At the time, next to having a Dodge Van, it was one of the best surfmobiles we had access to. It's bigness allowed room for everyone and their equipment, yet it forced us to deal with each other in close proximity during our rides to the beach. It was a clubhouse for we surfers and in it we made the best of friends.

Saw a guy in a magazine with the Town and Country Yin-Yang logo tattooed on his back. Full-size too, bottom of his neck to lower back. A dedicated and loyal patron I suspect. I've often wondered about the Town and Country origins and mind set (not the car, most of those babies are rusting in the sun somewhere) Our authority on most things Hawaiian Neal, or as he should be addressed, "You lucky Bastard!! :) Has mentioned there's a true dichotomy between those of the Town and those of the Country in Hawaii, yet they compliment each other and live in Harmony. (think of the T&C logo) Can this be true? What is it that compels them to be this way? Does anyone know of the differences in attitude of those people and what makes them co-operate with one another? Whatever it is, a good dose of it could be applied to certain unnamed beaches in which aggression and rivalry rule the line-up.

I haven't a clue about this, but I sense there is something to it.


the Man

Fri, 19 Jun 1998

Today, at 6:30 am, one of my oldest surf buddies - Stan the Man, will enter an operating arena at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to have a hole bored in his head for a biopsy on what could be a virulent brain tumor.

I just can't believe this.

Stan was always one of the best surfers and physical specimens I've ever known. Were it not for a terrible accident in college breaking his legs, he would have surely run a distance event in the Olympics. He was my college roommate, and many of you know, next to being married, roomies can be the closest relationships you have for life.

I spoke with Stan and his wife last night. They are devastated by this and further tweaked my mortality alarm by telling me that 3 of my 5 closest surf bros are now being treated for some form of cancer. These men are all under 50 years old.

I shared many things with Stan, and in return he has over the years been one of my most loyal friends. He was always a better surfer, being so much more physically graceful and strong. The closest person I can compare him to was Dewey Weber. In looks, but not height, and definitely longboard style. Stan was always a nose hound and would go up there countless times, even if it guaranteed not making the wave. The one and only place he wanted to be was the last 12 inches of the nose of any board he rode.

After not seeing him for several years, one day I was to meet him in Wrightsville Beach where he was vacationing. As I walked over the dunes to the beach, out of 50 people in the water I knew immediately which one he was. Besides his cue ball bald head, as soon as he took a wave, he was always maneuvering his board into position for a dash to the nose. When he got there and could hold that spot for more than a few seconds he was, quite literally in another zone.

With all that was on his mind last night, all he wanted to talk about was past surfing experiences and our hook-up this summer in Wrightsville. I told him if he were under treatment and could not wax or carry his board to the water, I was going to hire one of those Reef Brazil girls to do it for him. "But Foon," he countered "You never get to see their faces." I said, mock seriously, "Stanley my man, you still don't have a clue what those ads are about, do you boy?" I could hear him chuckle at that.

I will have a long and introspective weekend at the beach. My buds, like myself, are getting on in years. Three are in mortal trouble, and it's not because of poor lifestyles. Two of those guys could get commendations for being Mr Naturals when it came to diet and such. Stan was such a fitness freak he regularly ran 5 miles each day to stay in shape, and coached his own daughter to a State cross country championship, by running with her during every practice. I never saw the guy eat anything but veggies and fish. Though he'd have a beer with his buds.

"Men use one another to assure their personal victory over death."
Ernest Becker


firefly firefly......

Mon, 22 Jun 1998

Foontherapy...beware of this one.

I was in the deepest of dark moods. In short order, Friday I was informed one of my dearest surfing brothers and friends, Stan the Man, had brain cancer and another two buddies were being treated for other types. On top of that some mental midget was stupid enough to have a head-on accident on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, turning our normally swift and pleasant 3 hour ride to the beach into a miserable 5 hour traffic choked marathon. Three times MrsFoon patted my leg as she drove and fumed in the stop and go saying, "are you ok?" Now I know traffic makes her crazy-mad so the vibe I was giving off by not answering her must have been fierce for her to be concerned about me. I was obsessed with the news about Stan.

Later, driving through the pitch black night of Delmarva farm country I was smitten by what I saw. I've seen many nights filled with fireflies in my life. But this year due to the mild winter, compliments of El Nino, the Right Coast has a new effect, El Buggo. I do not lend my self to hyperbole easily (right?) but when I say there were ZILLIONS of fireflies undulating over the newly planted cornfields of the Delaware, I mean just like a huge sparkling moonlit ocean.

In 1970 I sat one such moonlit night high atop a cliff overlooking a Montauk, Long Island surf spot called "posters." Stan and I were surf camping that weekend and we'd spent a glorious summer day slashing and cruising the tide-fickle spot until it could give up no more challenging waves. That night we sat watching the waves break from above and the moon reflect off the dimpled water. Behind us was a field of wild flowers that teemed with fireflies. As the evening wore on it became hard to tell where the field left off and the ocean began. I'd known Stan for 6 years and that night he revealed to me something I'd never known.

A man of science and math, Stan was also a superb athlete, a long distance and cross-country runner. When in serious training for a meet, he'd "do 15 (miles)" in the morning, then another 10 at night just before dusk. He could do this every other day for two weeks. As his room mate I was astounded at the strength, self discipline and courage this took. Yes, courage. Because running by his definition was torture, without the fun.

Stan looked at me that night and said quietly, "See those fireflies Foon? We're just like them. We come into the world, show off our stuff a bunch of times and fade on into the night. Our life span is as short as theirs in relation to our known world. What counts is what we do with out lives. Those little bugs bring a little light and joy to those who observe them. If we could just bring a little joy and light into the lives of those near us, our job is done. Sorta like passing on the stoke to the next generation."

I nodded my understanding and pondered in absolute amazement the profundity of the words from this man of science. In retrospect now I can honestly say Stan brought some of that lightness and joy into my life. Some of my best times surfing and traveling were with this talented and funny man. I can hardly accept the fact he may soon be gone.

Sunday - Father's Day. I was fooling around in the smallest of shorebreaks for the sheer need of some physical exercise. A little kid saw me riding (?Hah) these miniwaves and came over asking me if I would teach him to catch and ride the waves on his boogieboard. I casually asked the kid if his Dad might want to do that for him. A dark cloud passed over the boys face as he muttered, "My dad is dead, he died two years ago in a car crash." God I felt stupid. So I said, "If it's ok with your mom I'll help you." He ran out of the water and came back clutching the hand of a young and pleasant looking woman. She said, "Ricky says you'd teach him to ride some waves if it's ok with me." I said, "Sure, can he swim?" Even though the water we were doing this in was only waist deep. "Yes," she smiled, "he's a water rat, can't get him out of it, even when it's cold." These were exactly the same words my mother used to describe me as a kid his age. I said, "OK, here we go sport." And for the next two hours I stood and poured everything I could teach into this little boy about waves and riding them ..... all the while thinking of Stan's words on that cliff overlooking Posters.

"We're just like them, Foon."

* * * * *
firefly, firefly
burning bright.
Guide us through
this deep.....dark....night.


What do you take?

Fri, 26 Jun 1998

Decisions, Decisions......on the threshold of a vacation the mind wanders to those free times to indulge your every fancy. Naturally one wishes to be fully occupied surfing perfect waves with no crowds, in ideal weather and water conditions. All you need is a board, some trunks and a bar of wax. HELLO??? Reality check! This is the Right Coast in July I'm talking about here so dream on Foonboy, you'd better prepare for something to do other than surf.

Natch, the Bunker is fully stocked with provisions and surfing equipment should a stray storm come our way. I got really lucky two years ago when some low pressure center slowly spun out in the Atlantic for almost two weeks giving up a small but terribly consistent swell that was enhanced by local wind and tide conditions. Almost surfed myself to death on that vacation....not a complaint, just a fond remembrance.

The one box I'm allowed to bring to the beach sits empty before me. I have three days to think of what I want to bring on vacation. So far the list contains:

  1. Several new CDs from Joshua Redmond, Wayne Shorter, Keb Mo, the Modern Jazz Quartet, Taj Mahal, Cassandra Wilson and John Fogerty (I liked CCR).
  2. Some reading materials including two Dean Koontz books I've yet to read, a historical war novel, a Medical murder mystery and a copy of "How Stella got her Groove Back," by Terry McMillan. Finally I tossed in the latest Surfer's Journal, and Drew Kampion's surfing perspective, "Stoked." Can anyone explain to me how Drew Kampion and Bill Morris can have the same title on their books? Drew's pictures are better, but I really enjoyed Bill's story.
  3. Clothes= two pairs of shorts, two T-shirts, a pair of Reef flip flops, and one baseball hat.
  4. Accessories = Portable CD player, two pairs of shades, a quart of Bullfrog sun lotion, a fifth of Sauza Commemerativo, some crummy cigars and a lighter.

Now at the risk of being told by Sandman all he takes is a Navy Seal knife and some waterproof matches, what do you all take when you go on vacation? (Trolling for ideas here)


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