lundi 26 juin 2006

Drinking + bike riding = Wobbly bike riding.

Yesterday, I went on an 8-mile pub crawl, from Santa Monica through Venice to Marina del Rey and back again.

Pros: We were on bikes.
Cons: We were on bikes.

Pros: We started (drinking) at 10:30AM.
Cons: We started at 10:30AM.

Beach or desert?

Really, I don't know why I agreed to do this. The last time I was on a bike was 6 years ago, during my study abroad when the program brought us to an island, dropped us off there, and told us that really, the only way to get around the island was on bikes. I had to borrow sneakers from a friend, because who brings sneakers so to Paris? Previous to that, it had been 3 years, on this stupid stupid 40-mile bike ride from the foothills of LA out to the beach. Needless to say, I am not one who is frequently found on the seat of a bicycle.

It's all about the palm trees.

So of course I showed up bright-eyed-and-bushy-tailed (or, perhaps more accurately, donning sunglasses and yawning), clad so-very-appropriately in a skirt and flipflops. Because that's how seriously I took things. And because if I was going to have to be on a bicycle, I was going to be cute, dammit.

Can you tell which one is my bike?

That saying, you never forget how to ride a bike, or whatever it is, is so true, because after a few start-and-wobbles (which were perhaps punctuated with a few squeals and curses), I was fine, and sailing down the bike path. Okay, perhaps sailing is a bit of an exaggeration, but I was pedaling along without too much incident. My stupid bike didn't really have brakes, so stopping was somewhat of a problem, and my only injury is a scraped up toenail from when I ran into a rock trying to stop my bike because I had lost my flipflop.

Post-stampede, everyone slightly confused because nobody knows where to go next.

So we biked. And drank. And the combination? Makes for some wobbly and drunken biking. Drunken festivities were punctuated by two rules: 1) If anyone said the word "bike", s/he had to wear a helmet (and I said the word lots of times, but luckily everyone promised not to tell) and 2) The last person to leave the bar after the whistle was blown had to wear a cape, and was in charge of the whistle for the next bar. If you thought that this latter rule caused a mild stampede when the whistle was blown (given that there were 20-some of us), you'd be right.

Because I can't sleep, here is a map of where we went.

What you don't see - the Hot Dog on a Stick we picked up next door.

1) Big Dean's "Muscle-in" Cafe. We started with mimosas here. Or, more accurately, orange juice and sparkling wine that we had to mix into our own mimosas because they weren't allowed to? No matter. Whether they mixed it or we did, it was still a mimosa in the end. Oh, and maybe I had some beer here also. Thankfully, I also had an egg-ham-cheese sandwich here also, because I forgot to mention the bloody mary back at the house where we all met up.

Can you tell that her red short shorts are vinyl?

2) Okay, I cannot remember the name of this place, and I am obviously too lazy to find it. Strawberry margheritas here. But the most fun part was this lady across the street. I can't even describe her; the picture will have to suffice. (Yes, our whole group spent a lot of time trying to get a picture of her.) It's too bad you can't see the NAKED painting of her at the stall.

I think that if I had one of these, it might have been all over much more quickly.

3) Ah, The Whaler was where it all started going downhill. Three peach stolis-and-soda and some champagne later, I wasn't sure I could bike anymore. But I could. Thankfully, there were french fries.

4) The mai tais were enormous at Tony P's. That's all I have to say. Thankfully, there were more french fries.

Us trying to get out of the parking lot, an SUV trying to get in. Not really an ideal place for everyone to hang around waiting.

5) Shots at the Baja Cantina - good idea or not?

Behold the cape in all its glory. And more standing around being confused.

6) We lost the ringleader of this whole shebang on the way over to the next place. So we tried calling her, but she didn't pick up. For many minutes. Luckily, one other person knew the itinerary, so we made it to the next location. Where the ringleader had already made it, drinking beer and playing pool and making fun of us for being slow. Maybe more beer was had here also.

The Santa Monica Pier. What you can't see are the five hundred gazillion people.

7) Back to Big Dean's. Cider now. Learned that one of the guys on the bike ride, his family OWNS Carney's. He is now my most favourite person in the whole wide world.

This sort of gives an impression of how squished we were.

And then the remaining group all piled into a car - 8 people into a truck only meant to hold 5 - and drove home.

As evidenced by the sun setting, we didn't leave until, oh, around 8 or so.

It's a really good thing I (still) have nothing to do, so I can spend the rest of the day sleeping this off.