Sunday, August 19, 2007

kayaking minority seeks attonement for roadkill

Took Lockwood-Paris Valley Road to Lake San Antonio, an aesthetically appealing alternative to the usual route. I played a cassette -- yes, a cassette, they still work in my car -- of a radio show I taped in the late 1980's while living in New York. It's amazing to have frozen this random slice of radio and then listened to it every now and then for the last ten or twenty years. It still sounds fresh. The station, WFMU, actually broadcasted out of New Jersey, but was the best alternative radio station I knew of in the NYC area. The tape starts with some sort of Third World chanting, which is then overlaid with menacing electronics. The effect is amazing, and combined with the parched, desolate country road, it pretty much made my day.

I should mention that that was after I hit a squirrel that bolted out in front my car. That made me feel awful. Had I not decided to go kayaking on this sunny Sunday, this creature may still be alive.

To ensure that the squirrel was not sacrificed in vain, I proceeded with my plan. I had never kayaked at this lake before. For the most part it was really nice -- ducks, herons, and the skeletons of sunken oak trees. On the other hand the lake was full of jet skiers and speed boats, rendering me -- the guy trying to kayak back to nature -- a minority and no less a target than a squirrel on a country road. Unlike the squirrel, I studiously avoided the drunken boaters and the wakes they created. I probably got more exercise than they did -- which was the whole point. A little swimming, a little sunburn, and I was spent. Back at the marina a large screen TV was showing live footage of Kingston, Jamaica getting hammered by Hurricane Dean.


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