Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Tuesday Update 08.15.06 (laughing camels, crabs, Seinfeld lives...)

Okay, it is currently 11:40 PM, and I’m in a mad rush to get this up before Wednesday gets here in 20 minutes.....here goes...

The last week is hard to recall....I have been around the world it seems. I definitely put 2000 miles on the Saturn since last Tuesday, so there is much to tell, but I’ll cut to the chase...

Saturday was the highlight of the last week. I stayed with my friend Jonah Sage (see my top 8 on MySpace) in Florida and we got up early Saturday to go catch Scallops and crabs in the bay. It was a 90-minute drive and Jonah’s roommate Matt was driving. About an hour into our trip someone just happened to ask, “so what does a scallop look like?”

As you might have guessed, the response from everyone was “I don’t know, I thought you knew!”

It was funny asking the locals what in the world we were doing, seeing that we had just driven 90 minutes as if we had a clue. They were obviously amused, but not nearly as amused as I was at the man and wife in the bait and tackle store.

I must have had more water than I thought on the drive to the bay because when we got there I had to go. Well this old skinny guy beats me to the restroom and is in there forever. While I am standing around waiting, I hear a laughing camel...at least that is what I thought it was. I turn around and it turns out to be this old lady hacking on something, not choking or anything serious, just hacking...I tried to ignore it but dang it was hilarious...and awkward. She was blasting 90 decibels barely 3 feet behind me and seemed oblivious to the fact that other people were there in the store to hear her. I finally turned around and she asks me, “is my husband still in there?”

I nodded and tried to pull myself together. “Yep,” I muttered.

She made some strange comment that I can’t recall and then continued hacking. I assume that this is either a hobby or a way to let her husband know that he had better finish his business because she is tired of waiting...Makes you married guys tremble doesn’t it?

Anyway, I have gotten in the habit of striking up conversations with whatever interesting personalities I encounter on the road so I approach the hacking lady and ask if she is “from around here?”

She says “yeah,” but that she was from Tennessee before she got married. She proceeds to tell me that they have bee married for 13 years. I am guessing by their appearance that they were married around the age of 45...

She tells me a little more and then I hear the door open and her husband walks out of the restroom. This puts me standing directly between them as she asks him, “are you alright?” I begin to drift towards the bathroom in an effort to relieve my bladder and avoid wherever their conversation will go next.

As I pass this man in a narrow section between stands of overpriced “technical” fishing clothes, he leans in toward me in an eerie way and stutters once before he continues...

“I--If there’s anything left in there, scoop it out!” he exclaims, still leaning in toward me, grinning, and making a spastic scooping gesture with his hand.

What the crap! How do you reply to something like that!!!

I can’t really remember, but I think I mustered up a sheepish “okay.” I could feel his wife’s disapproval at his comment even as I walked away from them. As soon as the bathroom door closed I laughed...between her hacking and his comments I felt violated twice, and yet I was smiling just to know that it had been a Seinfeld moment...one of those brief and meaningless occurrences that are commonplace in situational comedies, but that are golden when you actually live one and survive....

The rest of the day must have been part of the same episode. We hunted scallops for almost 2 hours without finding even one. We kept asking the locals and they held back smiles as they told us what to look for and where we should be looking. Our pride as hunter-gatherers was quickly dying...

Finally, we drove to a nearby bridge over a small inlet from the gulf. The beaches were beautiful and the surf was pretty reasonable. We had a crab trap and were told that we could catch crabs there. The trap only caught 3 crabs (probably due to the fact that we failed to lock the door on the trap shut...morons!), but thanks to a homeless man that let us borrow his dip net, we caught 27 total crabs in the next two hours. It must have been hilarious watching the three of us out on the sand flat with one net. We would sweep the flat as a team, almost always in waist deep water, and would corner any crab we came across until one of us with the net could get there. (We aslo jumped up a huge sting-ray!)

By the end of the day we were exhausted, and Matt had a sunburn in the middle of his back where he tried to put on his own sunscreen and failed. Nevertheless we had a bucket full of crabs...and no clue how to prepare or cook them.

It made no difference to me. I never got to taste them because I had to shower and drive to Mobile, AL for a show as soon as we got in. I drove to my parent’s house in Birmingham right after the show was over and made it in right at 7:00 AM.

I was exhausted. I still am. So I am going to bed.

It looks like it is now officially Wednesday...12:30 AM...so it’s not a “Tuesday” update...what else is new...



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