Do you enjoy contradictions? So do a lot of people. For example, that commercial in which the young black men are listening to rap music then when no one is watching they get out of the car and are great ballerinas. It is a curveball just like if they received Sunset magazine in the mail. It just doesn’t seem likely! Another example is I was talking to an amazing depressed and violent youth the other day and she said she loves when baskets of fruit are carved to look like flowers. She doesn’t just love knives and punching people. She likes a thing that looks like this but is really that. It turns out we might not know everything about a person by the way they are depicted in the cartoons of the 1980’s. Right now in front of my face on TV: Ken Jeong singing Jim Croce in The Hangover 2? The hell! Why would he sing that???
My life this weekend has been a giant bowling trophy dedicated to incongruities. Saturday I drove to Encinitas to ride skateboards with a bunch of women, including CB Burnside, Lisa Whitaker, Mimi Knoop, Amy Caron, Michelle Steilen, Sara Taylor, Hayley Gordon and Van Nguyen. I list them here with links because maybe you don’t know who they are and you would love to be inspired. They are all spectacularly inspiring people. I generally and also specifically loathe skating mini ramps because I carve more than kick turn and also skatelite is so slippery. So when it was announced we’d be skating at CB’s mini ramp my feelings were the opposite of when I imagine baby turtles making their first voyage to the ocean.
We rolled up to a home surrounded by a tall, wooden fence. The front gate was wide open. The irrigation went on in the garden and I noticed a leak, then tried to find its source and fix it. The line was too deeply buried, then I remembered I didn’t know the people who lived there and I came to skate. So I stepped up to the half pipe, where Amy and I swept like human nature zambonis. I enrobed my knees in my giant Scabs pads, dropped in one side, rolled out the other and was sure I had executed all the moves I would have to offer that day. One of the pieces in the ramp was rotten and sagging so there was an area to avoid about two feet in from one side of the ramp. Mimi was throwing out some flawless rock and rolls, Van was setting up disasters, CB was doing heel flips into disasters, Sarah Taylor was trying EVERYTHING, including some long 50-50 grinds, rocks, whatever, Amy was doing everything ever with the casual ease I attribute to catalog models, and Michelle set aside her roller skates to ride a skateboard with her intense natural athleticism. We fakie-d next to each other. She did kick turns in that way of making the full 180 degrees. I usually hammer out a solid 80 degrees. Life! Nothing turns out like you think it will! I walked into my backyard to find a stray chicken tonight!
Later that afternoon CB, who has eight cats (which to me makes her a wonderful woman and guardian of an important population on this crazy blue marble), showed us how she picks up the adolescent skunks who wander around her property. She has a garden bed that runs the length of her driveway which has tall shrubs along the edge and behind the shrubs about five feet of earth which leads to a fence. There is a long line of cat huts and cat scratchers in this shady little strip. The whole vibe is very Guerneville. I told a couple people this and because none of them are from Northern California, no one thought it was HILARIOUS. I have been Not Understood A LOT since moving here. It is a weird experience, and a wonderful companion piece to how when I walk in a room here, no one is like YEAH!!!!! Here the response to me is more like, “Now there is a person standing where once there was just a door.” Perhaps one day I will dazzle, but so far it’s just the hum of desk fans when I walk in to any given room.
Van and I eventually left and went for spring rolls at Favori’s in Fountain Valley. We had a small fish and crammed our tired bodies full of spring rolls, soda xi muoi and mum nem. Then we had to drive 45 minutes to Echo Park which took the same strength as lifting and throwing boulders (because we carried the car).
Stay tuned for the following day, which was opposite day!