April 17th, 2011

My friend Mike’s a reasonable person and a good soul. We’re in his truck. We picked up boards, cans of tar, nails, bolts, and a roll of roofing paper. We were going to fetch a forklift full of twelve inch concrete blocks but decided to do that another day. I was up for it but Home Depot was packed with spring loaded homeowners hunting for spring time treasures. Bags of dirt. Paint. Ninety nine dollar wheelbarrows. Growing up, I called them wheelbarrels. Made sense to me. a barrel on a wheel. Wheelbarrel.

We both agree theres a persistent weirdness about Sunday that people like us just can’t shake. I’ve written about it before. Sunday is the weirdest fucking day of the week. Period. Even if its sunny and pleasant as it was today, Sunday’s mojo is sideways, tilted, loopy, most times dark,and unpredictable. Riding a motorcycle is different on a Sunday than any other day of the week. Give me a warm Saturday and thousands of miles of hot asphalt and I’m good to go. Make it a hot Sunday afternoon and i”m uncomfortable. I’m probably not happy either. I feel riding a motorcycle on a Sunday afternoon is an inherently dangerous act simply because it’s Sunday.

Mike agrees. He knows theres a marked difference between a Saturday afternoon in the sun and a Sunday afternoon under the same conditions. ” Crazy people”, he says, ” People like us. Sunday kills us. Its always tough for us. And yes, theres a difference between the same afternoon on a Saturday and the same afternoon on a Sunday.”

My friend Ralph and I ran the rocks on the Big Stewart river in Minnesota on a sunburnt Saturday afternoon on acid. The two deer grazing in the woods were used to us. Their smooth beige heads lifted together and their slow eyes followed us as we ran from one slippery exposed rock to the next. The sun glistened off soft pools of clear Minnesota river water, highlighting snags of neon green moss bobbing off the sides of wet rock walls.

The roll of the river down into Superior was elegant. We were flying. Recklessly lifting our bodies into the air as our feet briefly touched the tips of wet, exposed river rock. One slip, one acid lit electric second of thinking about what it was we were doing would doom us to screwing up. If you thought about running rocks, you couldn’t do it.You’d get hurt. Seriously hurt. The brain’s unasked for system of quick intervention would put a stop to it. Thats why we never touched down with all our weight on a rock. Make contact and you’ll slip. Your head will split in half on the rocks and you’ll probably die right there.
Running rocks is extremely dangerous. But enormously entertaining especially if you can empty your mind of the thought of the danger.You trick your mind into thinking its flying. And it is.

It’s mindless delight. The birds whistling and singing is clear and brilliant. Nature’s chaotic opera lifts the canyons of heat in the four o’clock afternoon light with a choir of cheer as warm winds hustle in time through the tops of the pines. Its Saturday and its amazing.

We never ran rocks on a Sunday. Never dropped acid on a Sunday. Just survived Sunday in a mopey,dopey, dumb ass sort of funk. Even surfing on a Sunday is a different wave.. There’s something in the scent of the salt in sea spray and the way it crisps up on your skin that says its Sunday. Something that hovers above the sea between the water and the sky. Something that affects the way people move. Something that affects the way they behave.

Thats what Mike says. ” Its the way people behave on Sunday that makes it a crazy day for crazy people like us.”

And that makes sense. Sunday is a crazy day. Its almost over. And thats good for all people who either are, or would like to be, crazy.

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