April 18, 2011

Are You Catching My Drift?

Good morning and greetings, NBA playoff fans. It’s been another week of wild weather across this great land of ours. We’re talking violent killer tornadoes accompanied by pounding rain, howling winds and Halle Berry.

On Friday, one-fifth of all this year’s tornadoes descended on the south and midwest as the Weather Channel totaled 158 twisters in three days. On Saturday, 62 tornadoes hit North Carolina alone, and the death toll from this entire storm system hit 35. There’s something about 150 MPH winds swooping in and wiping out families and neighborhoods in a matter of seconds that leave me a little on edge, like when I was waiting for the results of my colonoscopy. But that worked out okay, as like Robin Williams, I’m now I’m using it as a film credit.

So in my last post I told you a little something about the history of Davenport, which lies nine miles north of Santa Cruz. Today, on the photo front, we are venturing twenty miles further up Highway 1 to the sprawling metropolis of Pescadero. Now I don’t know too much historically about this coastal enclave, besides the fact that it was a very popular stage coach stop between Santa Cruz and San Francisco and that early settlers to this area discovered that you can make wonderful bread and a delicious cream soup out of artichokes.

I should also mention that each year my son (who dunked a volleyball on Saturday) plays in a preseason basketball tournament in Pescadero. My favorite memory from these back-to-back second place finishes was the first time I spotted the t-shirt for sale that read on the front, “Pescadero”, and on the back, “Who even knew we had a high school.” Classic.

So my brother Paul, who we last heard from when he wrote about his orchidholism (although he now claims to be sober and a succulent man), decided to stop at Pescadero State Beach on a recent trip down the coast. My middle brother has always loved this beach and on this day was child, wife and dog free, so he had all the time in the world to check out the driftwood action, go cliff diving and monitor gray whale traffic.

As you can see, my tennis-playing sibling really caught some good theatre, as he combed the beach like a homicide detective looking for blood splatter and shell casings. Ironically, on my first trip to the Golden State back in 1974, after flying into SFO, my old pal Doug MacKinnon, Paul and I headed down the coast and the first beach we stopped at was Pescadero. I was impressed with the golden sand, endless dunes and magnificent cliffs, and that was just inside the snack bar.

I remember thinking, like a young Balboa, this Pacific Ocean is going to work for me, but after dipping my toes in the water, I knew I was going to have major shrinkage issues. At this point in my middle-aged existence, I need the warm, tropical water to cleanse and rejuvenate my battered body and shattered soul, and 55 degree water just ain’t gonna cut it.

So what do we know about driftwood? What do we know about Norweigian Wood? And for that matter, what really happened to Natalie Wood?

So here are a few quick facts. According to Norse mythology, the first humans before John McCain, Ask and Embla, were formed out of two pieces of driftwood, an ash and an elm, by the God Odin and his brothers, Tito and Jermaine. Most driftwood is the remains of trees or shuttered Starbucks that have been been washed into the ocean due to flooding, erosion, confusion, high winds, garage sales or misplaced Lincoln Logs. And driftwood can be used as decorative furniture, like the couch in my living room and is a very popular element in the scenery for fish and government think tanks.

Here comes the late night. “Donald Trump insists that he is going to run for president. I guess he figures if he can pull off that hairstyle, he can do anything. Maybe he should ease into this — by running for a lower office first, like President of the Hair Club for Men. Trump said he can’t run because he has the #1 show on NBC. Which is kind of like having the nicest house in Haiti.” –Jimmy Kimmel “Donald Trump has a great campaign slogan: ‘A complex world demands complex hair.’” –David Letterman

“Critics say it’s illegal for Donald Trump to run for president while hosting a TV show. It’s also illegal to run for president if your hair wasn’t born in this country. According to a CNN poll, Trump nearly doubled his support from March. Actually, he just combed his March numbers over his current ones.”–Conan O’Brien “Barack and Michelle Obama will appear on Oprah’s show soon. Not to be outdone, Donald Trump’s hair will be making an appearance on Animal Planet.”–Jay Leno

“A meeting between Justin Bieber and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu has been canceled. No word yet on how this will affect the meeting between Selena Gomez and Hezbollah. President Obama says he misses being anonymous. You know, back when he could blend in with the other Hawaiian Barack Hussein Obamas.” –Conan O’Brien. “Today, President Obama changed his slogan from ‘Yes, We Can’ to ‘Have It Your Way’”–Bill Maher, on the Democrats capitulating to Republican budget demands.

“The air traffic controllers are sleeping, the TSA is groping you, and the pilots are drunk. Who would have thought the most reliable workers at the airport would be the baggage handlers? A New Zealand airline is offering what they call “cuddle class.” Don’t all airlines have that? It’s called “coach.”–Jay Leno “The Pentagon announced that openly gay soldiers will begin serving this summer. When people asked why this summer, the Army said, ‘Because ‘Glee’ will be in reruns.’” –Conan O’Brien

“A new poll shows that only 19 percent of Americans strongly approve of President Obama’s performance. The other 81 percent don’t own gas stations. The price of gas in California is almost $5 a gallon. Coming into work, I passed a van packed with legal Americans. Gas has gone up 20 cents just this week. Shouldn’t we stop calling it crude oil at this point and call it obscene oil? Obama said in an interview that he really misses being anonymous. If he wanted to remain anonymous he should have run for vice president.” –Jay Leno

“Republicans are obsessed with abortion. If they really wanted to protect the weakest, most helpless people, wouldn’t they protect the Democrats? Glenn Beck retired or got fired…and a lot of people are asking who will now speak for the raving lunatics who startle you outside of a parking garage?” –Bill Maher “Because of a holiday, the deadline for taxes is April 18, so you have three extra days to dig through restaurant dumpsters for receipts.”–Jimmy Kimmel

So another post is in the books. And if you enjoyed my brother Paul’s photos, here’s some bonus photography for you. My brother Brad recently posted some incredible pictures and text from his Alaska heliskiing trip. You can check them out at http://www.glutenfreesnowboarder.com/2011/04/alaska-the-last-frontier/. If you want to enlarge the pictures just click on them. And remember, all proceeds go to the send Brad’s oldest brother to Hawaii foundation.

So enjoy the first night of Passover and first round of the NBA playoffs and we’ll catch you around the seder plate. Aloha, mahalo and later once again, Derrick Rose fans.


  1. Is it just me or does that first piece of driftwood look like a kangaroo? Love the change of pace from the same old glorious sunrises/sunsets. And if you really want to see some photos from Alaska check out https://picasaweb.google.com/bradpix/HainesHighlights2011#

    Comment by Zach Randolph — April 18, 2011 @ 7:01 am

  2. Wow, driftwood city! Best passover wishes surrounded by love ones.

    Comment by Babs — April 18, 2011 @ 8:57 pm

  3. The first driftwood piece looks exactly like a standing lemur.
    nice shots! (just like Ty Lawson)

    Comment by Wendi — April 19, 2011 @ 11:26 am

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