El Capitan, as he is sometimes affectionately called, spent his final hours at home sulky, moping, sad-faced. Why? Because once again he was leaving the love of his life? Because the idea of being apart for even two or three weeks was too much to bear? Because…No, not even close. Mr. Turn That Frown Upside Down was going to miss out on a huge swell (no, not that kind, either).
A south swell from the southern hemisphere is going to hit our beaches on Friday through the weekend. Captain Cranky was going to miss some big surf. There had been no surf to speak of for the entire time he was home. Boards were freshly waxed and at the ready. Many surf checks on the internet and driving back and forth to the beach did not cause any rideable waves to appear. It was Lake Pacific, and you could actually see all the way to Hawaii (not really).
Stop the presses.
So I had to contend with a grouchy twelve-year-old attitude in a fifty-year-old body. I did not sign up for that. Isn’t fifty a little young to be going through a second childhood? How do you deal with a grown-up Gloomy Gus who’s crabby because he can’t play in the water?
I finally had had enough. We went on yet another surf check—still nothing–stopped for a shave ice, and walked around our little village. I had high hopes that a location change would take his mind off his misery. What a sad sack, sighing, dragging his feet, and going on and on and on about how he was going to miss this great swell and he hadn’t had any good waves in such a long, long time. OMG, I am usually a super supportive surf-wife, but this is too much. Too much. Way too much. We walked into a little jewelry store where the owner had brought her adorable dog–a rescue. We chatted about the dog and she told a story about how she acquired it—not an abusive situation—but rather the owner had cancer and had planned for some time to find a nice home for her pet, and when she did, she walked into the ocean and that was that. That was that?
What?? I had hoped that the chat would take his mind off his “troubles”, but this was going in a direction I hadn’t anticipated! Once she found out that Captain Crunchy was a man of the sea, we were privy to a lot more of the details. That tragic story didn’t do much to cheer him up. At least the dog had a happy ending.
Back home, I tried cajoling him, I tried setting time limits on his bad behavior—OK, you can be mopy for one more hour and then snap out of it—I tried plying him with alcohol–that didn’t work either—I tried telling him that there would be more waves in the future—and then I told him if it meant that much to him, he should just stay home. I know he loves to surf, he lived for a while in Hawaii, but this was ridiculous, right?
I said, “You need to think about the things that you are grateful for, all the good things in your life, and really, really, knock it off, ‘cos you are getting on my last nerve!”
Finally, probably because it was getting dark and any thought about surfing was moot, his mood lifted, and we had a pleasant evening. All in all, he’s a pretty even tempered guy, and not normally ornery, so I’ll let it go this time.
Quite a few years ago, we had a fight about something–I can’t even remember what it was about–and I wanted to prove a point, so just before he got home from work, I put his surfboard out on the sidewalk with a sign that said, “Surfboard for sale. Surfer included”.
He got the point, and we had a good laugh. Maybe I need to recreate that scenario the next time Captain Cantankerous shows up.
- Big waves, rip currents to greet Labor Day holiday beach crowds (ocregister.com)
- Surfing goats hit the waves at San Onofre (beach.orangecounty.com)