Friday, July 14, 2006

Current Events

Gulp.

Breathe.

Wait! Wave, don't breathe!

Gulp.

OK, quick, breathe.

My head popped up above the white-foamed crest. I saw the next one coming. Or rather, I was heading toward it. Quick glance over my shoulder. The wife was somehow still in the goddamned Kayak. She was safe, though paddleless. I didn't have to worry...

Wave!

Gulp.

What did that tanned and blonde pretty-boy river guide say? Relax... Feet out in front.... Let the current take you... Oh Shit, I forgot to breathe!

Wave!

Gulp.

My hat was gone. My paddle was gone. The air was shocked by force and cold out of my lungs. The kayak and the rafts were still too far behind.

All had been well. We punched through a hole and came out the other side, but a rogue wave scooped me by surprise from the left. There was nothing to hold on to. The kayak was gone. I was taken by the water.

The third stretch of rapids began. I was still in the water. I was just a wee-bit concerned about striking a rock. I was a tad-bit more concerned about mis-timing gasps of air. The blinding slap of waves in my face also caused mounting awareness of the total fucking unpleasantness of a potential eddy or hole in my path. Fucking Kayak. I didn't want to try out the kayak. I should have stayed in the raft.

The icy current worked its way with me, pushing me up and pulling me down. It swept me forward at its own pace. My free will, and the exercise thereof, was worthless. I suppose there's a metaphor for life in there, but I'm not in a metaphore place tonight.

I backstroked toward the calm-looking border current to my left. I saw the nearest raft, crewed by my coworkers, rowing like Vikings, in hot pursuit. I also spied the fourth run of white waves looming all too near.

"There's his hat!" cried a voice from the raft.

"To hell with that cheap-ass ill-fitting hat..." I thought to myself.

"The hat is sinking!!" cried another.

"FUCK THE HAT!" I screamed silently to myself, as I suggested in an audible but bedraggled voice, "If you could manage to get me out before the next rapids, I would appreciate it..."

Which, they did, to my great appreciation. They also retrieved the wayward kayak paddle and my wife, pilot of the paddleless kayak. We were both aboard, and I took up my starboard bow rowing station. I felt numb. I felt empty. And then, a small voice squealed behind me, "The hat floated back to the surface!"

Yep. There it was, an oar's reach away.

Reading for Comprehension:
1. Ever been to Maupin?
2. If you are a 6'4" 23-year-old tanned shirtless river guide, with six-pack abs, white teeth and curly sun-bleached blonde hair, just how much sex do you get?
3. Anyone want a hat?

14 comments:

  1. 1) Yes. Been there. Know the river.

    2) Probably not much. They spend all their time guiding middle age lawyers down the river who are trying to find adventure and at night they go home to Maupin.

    3) Yes please on the hat.


    As kids in Texas, whenever we came up on rapids we would all bail out of the raft or canoe and body surf. It was more fun down in the water than up on the raft. With an odd peg-leg stance, one leg downward, one straight out in front, we would have our bodies at the mercy of the water.

    No helmets. No life vests. Just a crazy good time.

    You learn neat tricks like how to roll off rocks when you get pinned against them by the water and that if you are stuck on the bottom, crawl and climb laterally rather than force your way against the water that is holding you there.

    The key was to always try to go where the water was going, never force your way against the water. Be one with the water.

    Next time Brian, just say to yourself,

    “I am a leaf on the water.”

    ReplyDelete
  2. 1.) No.

    2.) I concur with inog, but from time to time, they probably get a randy peice of ass from an insecure 19-24-year-old or a neglected middle aged woman (or man).

    3.) No thanks. I'll take the shades though . . .

    ReplyDelete
  3. the river guide12:42 PM

    We love it when the lawyers from the city come out for their first trip down the Deschutes. We had one just the other day, man was he a crackup. Very safety conscious...was able to find the most dangerous aspect of even the most tame events.

    Anyway, when he wasn't talking about Battlestar Galactica or his Sirius radio, he was staring at boobs (as a River Guide, I see boobs all the time). Anyway, I think it was all the boob-staring, BSG/Sirius chattering that got him pitched out of the raft in the first place. Maybe it was the spot in the river where everyone jumps in....In any event, for a kid that grew up in California, he didn't seem very at home in the water (though he did seem to appreciate cooling off in there, also odd for a California boy).

    I could have fished him out at any time but I was enjoying the show too much. He may have drank some river water. He'll probably sue me for getting Giardia intestinalis or some such business. Not before he spends a few days on the crapper. Whatever. The fly-by-night guide service I work for might have insurance. If not, then I guess he can have this crappy hat I found.

    I'm going to go have sex now. Lots of sex. inog has no fucking idea what he's talking about. All the lawyer wives want the Maupin-schlong before they go back to the city. This one tonight wants me to call her the "Slayer" or some such...Yeah, I did a couple Slayers in my time. I don't like to brag.....Who am I kidding? I love to brag!

    ReplyDelete
  4. The hat2:40 PM

    For a minute there I almost escaped. I was hoping to end up on the head of someone who actually has a life. The only damn excitement in my life has been the 7 minutes that I ended up in the water. That stupid river guide could have picked me up. Then I could have seen what sex with multiple partners would have been like. Im so sick of sci-fi crap and endless hours in front of a computer. The next chance i get, Im jumping off again. If I end up drowning at least it would be better then 5 more minutes on the head of this socially retarded lawyer. He does have a cute kid though, go figure.

    ReplyDelete
  5. the hat2:50 PM

    Wait, maybe its the river guide's hat. Yep, that must be it. Someone has already been to Maupin.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'll pass on the six-pack river guide......but is the Hat single??? wink wink.......be a pal and pass my number......WHAT!?

    ReplyDelete
  7. The kayak2:54 PM

    Thats what you get for sitting your candy ass inside my compartment. Oh by the way, the river guide had sex with 2 hot female swedish tourists in the kayak hut about 3 hours before your group got up here. He put his feet out in front and let the current take him.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I hate each and every one of you.

    I'm keeping the hat.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Kayak Paddle2:21 PM

    Does no one care about me?

    I was in the water too

    Its always about the hat....

    ReplyDelete
  10. I've said it countless times before but will say it once again: dumbass.

    ReplyDelete
  11. the river11:21 PM

    Christ, I almost spared everyone the agony of another lawyer in the world. Almost.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Brian,
    Having had a similar unsettling experience on the river in Kernville, I am sympathetic.

    Its really that cold-shock, oh my g-d my brain is no longer sending messages to my limbs, kind of problem that concerned me.

    Then again, I wasn't wearing a hat...

    ReplyDelete
  13. The hat and I had a great date last night - he's Mac-Dreamy. So everyone back off - he's all mine!

    ReplyDelete
  14. To see a picture of Brian and his hat in happier days - click on the Ev Link - and look at my pics.

    ReplyDelete

Be compelling.

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