One of the reasons people gave me for going to La Jolla last month was to “barbecue on the beach”. What the fuck?
Pussy Joe and Patrick (the tallest Pendejo) kept telling me all about the BBQ rules at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club.
“You can rent your own grill or use the public one,” they may have said. I don’t really fucking know. I stopped listening at “BBQ”, because it sounded like work.
I went there on vacation. Vacation is restaurants and pizza delivery.
The beach is for:
Staring (without getting caught)
It was our 30th anniversary of being in legal bondage, and it was the Bear’s idea to go.
She loves the beach and found other things to do. I love the temperatures under a thousand degrees, and drinking every day from noon until I pass out.
We get there on Sunday and people have their little charcoal grill in the sand right next to the concrete walkway, with tables closer to the ocean.
The Bear and I grab a bottle of wine and a pitcher of margaritas, and we are sitting in the comfortable chairs with our feet up on the concrete wall.
I’m not taking a picture of your fucking grills.
We watch the sun quickly set. We agree BBQing on the beach is stupid.
For 8 full days we get to rent this little glimpse of how the 1-percent live. We are paying through the nose for this tiny, creaky room. But the drinks are unbelievably strong, we bring our own cheap wine to the beach, and one order of pizza lasted 2 days.
By Wed., drinking during the sunset is a ritual. The sea gulls have gotten into the game as well.
At the grill to the left of us, there’s a short, happy man cooking for a party of 10. Everyone else is inside the room, and he’s the only one working in the sand.
A seagull swoops in behind him and grabs something off the table. The Bear and I point and laugh and tell the guy something “is missing.” He turns to see what it is.
Another gull swoops in from behind and takes his meat off the grill.
“That was a 13-dollar-a-pound ribeye,” he says.
20-feet down the beach, the gulls are having WWIII over the remnants of this little man’s meat.
It takes 20 or 30 of them to tear it into bite-sized chunks.
He pulls out another cut. “Good thing we brought plenty”. And goes back to his grill with his tongs raised like anti-aircraft guns against the Luftwaffe.
The week goes fast, and we are down to the night before leaving. The Bear goes back to her “nature.” Here comes something I couldn’t predict – can you?
“I bought steak, veggies, and potatoes,” she says. “We are grilling on the beach tonight.”
Fuck. Didn’t we just agree that was a stupid…
We share the “public grill,” which doesn’t have a lid and maybe gets to 160-degrees. I could cook faster inside my car in Phoenix. After two hours the potatoes were just lukewarm rocks. The fucking Seagulls wouldn’t even steal them, so we gave them to the beach attendants.
The beach staff were 20-somethings out of Abercombie & Fitch catalogue and acted like they were just happy to eat anything with carbs.
We fought the other 1 percenters for our little portion of the grill and 90-minutes later had a “meal.”
We huddled over our little table in the sand and cut our meat with plastic knives and forks. We picked veggies out of the aluminum foil dripping in some heavy dressing. Not exactly fine dining, but it was delicious.
“Isn’t this great,” she kept saying.
30 years have taught me not to bitch when she has made an effort like beach BBQ.
But Bingo, you guessed it, I would have rather been 20-feet away with no sand in my shorts, an easy reach to the pizza, and my glass filled with red wine and laziness.