Friday, April 20, 2007


On the way to the beach yesterday I prayed for good weather. I actually said a prayer. The forecast was for drizzle and me without a coat, thus the devout-ish behavior: oh, jesus, don't let it rain on me. As we came through the pre-dawn darkness into a clear bluesky morning, I felt comforted by the great beyond. Although, the notion that there would be could be specific cosmic interest in my personal dryness is extremely unlikely, I am comforted by these beliefs that I cannot undo. But I am also betting I wasn't the only one out there praying for no rain in this sodden city.

I love it here. I love our sod. Wait, I'll go use my honey's computer to post some pictures, or wait, maybe I'll try to load some on my flash drive and put them on this one. I can't figure out shit. There. I did it, as you can see.

the backyard

the new fence

the sod

So, I pounded the sand in search of the now-elusive razor clam. We got 24, and they were big, so it was like a double limit (15 each=30), really.

It is a bit cumbersome to hunt for clams. You have to carry the gun (see previous posts) and a blunt-ended stick to pound the sand with, like a shovel handle.

Did I ever tell you the story about my old Dodge Polara that I drove for a thousand years and every time I turned off the ignition I had to hit the starter with a shovel handle to get it to start again? Yes? No? Nevermind. That was another life. I'm talking about clams, here. These connections in my head go on and on.... kind of like asha's diner/dive dendrites.

So, there I was, pounding the sand in search of the dime-sized hole with a tiny water spout that is the tell, the "show", of the clam's hidey-hole. Then comes the difficult part: it takes two hands to run the shovel, so you have to do something with the stick. AND, because time is of the essence, you have to be quick. You can't, like, set the stick on dry sand and go back for the clam because: a. you don't have time -- these guys move fast once you've tamped the sand and woke them up. and b. all sand looks pretty much the same. Run and set the stick down, come back and voila! no clam... So, I dropped the stick and went for the clam, stick be damned--and all this in the midst of rushing surf. I still maintain that clamming would be alot easier if you could just get the ocean to lay off for a minute. In and out, in and out, in and out. It is relentless and inconsiderate. Water that won't hold still.

So, there I still was. And I have tossed the stick, got the clam (hooray!) and now, gone back for my stick. But it has been washed away. I begin to search the beach, the ever-moving surf, for my stick. It is a wooden shovel handle with a green metal end. I see an old man carrying two sticks and I walk toward him. I say, "I lost my stick." He ignores me. I think, oh, it must not be MY green ended stick. It must be HIS green ended stick. I am gullible that way. I keep walking. I think old people would never steal. I think old fishermen are intrinsically good, although there is no basis in reality or history for me to think this. My brother Doug is a fisherman, and I lived on the docks in Charleston for too long and hung out with fishermen and woke up out to sea with fishermen who did not have my best interest at heart (although at that time, my best interest was a somewhat fluid concept) anyway....

I wander around in the surf, wasting precious time. It is now an incoming tide, after all, and the clam beds are now being covered inch by inch, minute by minute, and I only have 8 clams and can get an honest limit of 15, and have come all this way and don't want to go home without my fair share. So, I can't find it. My stick. My husband notices, says, "That guy has it." Same guy. So I walk over to him and ask in the nicest possible way,

"Did you just pick that stick up?"
He ignores me again.
"Hey," (I'm closer now. Its my stick alright.) "Did you just pick up that stick?"
He glares at me.
"Did you lose it?" he asks.
"Yes," I tell him.
He flings it aside in the surf and walks off.
I have to lunge for it.
I was close enough to reach it, but he just flung it and splashed off.

It was then I noticed his bag of clams: a giant net bag dragging behind him with probably 50 huge clams in it. He must not have got the memo about the 15 razor limit.

the take

What a prick. I don't usually use that language for old guys, but I'm making an exception this once. Actually, he probably had a commercial tag, and has an attitude about tourists. But I ain't no fucking tourist. I live here. I was born here. I deserve.

So, here I am this fine friday morning, skipping work. I love to skip work the way I used to love to skip school. I hate obligation. It is the essence of my disorder. I am going to take Sid to the vet to get his rabies shot, his nails done (what about mine?) and a long walk in between so he'll forget all the meanness of this civilized and disease-ridden world.

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood.


asia said...

Your backyard looks awesome! Wow.

I am out of town this weekend. We have to go order Clarks wedding ring from this guy in Bellingham or else he'll be wearing a decoy for the ceremony. Next weekend?

someone said...

next weekend is good. great!

Anonymous said...

who would have known you would become a comic, joshing in earnest, as Co used to say...I laughed aloud walking down the street at lunchtime, heartily and repeatedly...thanks for the great view from the cheapseats....