"And the stars are projectors, yeah, projecting our lives down to this planet Earth." - Modest Mouse


Beach Bombs 

Just got back from some good 'ol fashioned 4th of July beach madness. Santa Cruz beaches (technically a fireworks-free town) turn in to colorful warzones each year, thick with gunsmoke glowing red & yellow & white & green; white shears of light followed by sudden dense thunderclaps, splitting the sky and inspiring ooh's & awes, in spite of a million cops trying vainly to cordone and control the crowds. The main beaches we used to go to are now fenced off with a single entrance guarded by steely-eyed Sheriff's deputies searching for alcohol and explosives (and anything else they can find). Walls of orange construction plastic are slung up in an attempt to quell several years of growing rebellion as reveler's turned their stockpiles of Tijuana Toilet Busters and assorted rocketry on to the local PD foolishly attempting to clear the armed & drunken masses from the beaches at 10pm. Aside from those few individuals industrious and resolved enough to sneak their armories past these checkpoints, everyone else has just moved down the coast a half-mile. (Unfortunately my camera phone was set to lo-res but I got a few good shots...)

The cops at our part of town were friendly and amiable, even going so far as to brush off the occasional firecracker thrown near them by young punks. I think they know the locals aren't out to hurt anyone. Still when the Sheriff's jeep would drive out onto the beach with its headlights blazing in show of force, it would invariably be pelted with missiles.

My wife & I had gone to an afternoon showing of Michael Moore's excellent Fahrenheit 9-11 in what we felt to be our democratic duty on this day of American Independence. Maybe it was the smoke in the air... maybe it was the bourbon and a brick of chinese firecrackers... or maybe it was the eerie similarity of the arcing firetails of our peaceful beach rockets to the Sidewinders and Exocets hurtled by our planes into foreign lands, but the air was thick with rebellion and the cops knew well enough to stand aside.

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