Besides contracting tape worms and bumming around on a beach in New Jersey pretending to have a job as a life guard Kooky Kyle decided to pack it in and move south. As much as we would have loved to have him back out here in the Barb a man must do what a man must do. But don’t take my word for it take his as he learns that even the bets plans in life don’t always work out…
As I sat in my bedroom, in the wee hours of the morning on my birthday, the 16th of October I will proceeded to wake up, go run a crew practice, go for a surf, go to work and come home to repeat it all again the next day. In other places and other lives I have led, this would have satiated me. Here, back in Wilmington, I am not satiated. Surfing is something that isn’t happening often enough to make me happy. Crew is the main reason I came back to Wilmington
The crew team gave me a lot as a student; a body of friends, a physical outlet to keep me active, and an identity. I wanted to give back and help the team. Now that I have returned as an Alumni to coach it is not the same. I would have killed to have a coach when I was on the team and it feels as though I am not wanted and more of an annoyance than the boon I could be for the team.
There are several reasons for this. First, even though I made it clear to the Alumni (most of whom remembered) instead of coming back as the sole coach of the team, there is another coach. “I hadn’t heard from you” Everyone else did and no one told me you were in charge of this, last I heard it was the person I have been in touch with. The other coach rowed for a year and a half, has no prior coaching experience and last rowed in 2001. I on the other hand, rowed four years, have studied coaching under an Olympic level coach and have experience dealing with the school and the team and last rowed in June 2011.
Take your pick. I don’t want to correct him in front of the rowers but he is giving them some shitty advice that I know I am going to have to correct on the water. Additionally, I want to provide the team an outline of what they need to do to win. I know I wasn’t always in a focused boat that had the drive to win. When I was it was awesome. When I wasn’t, it sucked. The varsity seems to have no desire to do what they need to do to match their competitors. If this is because they think they know better, they are wrong. I was in the only boat to medal in the past decade, in vastly inferior equipment and at immense disadvantages. I need to sit down with the board and talk about this, but right now it is bothering me.
Next we come to the topic of work. I was kind of told I had a job waiting for me in Wilmington when I came back. My friend backpedaled pretty quickly from “Yea, I definitely want to hire you” to “I am not sure I have a position for you.” I understand not giving me a job if you do not have the business for it, but do not tell me I have a job waiting for me and then take it away. Do not feel awkward about it, business is business.
I applied to be on a burn crew but missed the cut off date by 6 hours. I will still do burns to build my resume but I won’t be getting paid. I also have a resume in for the Peace Corps. In the interim to pay bills I have taken a restaurant job. I am working at a restaurant called Siena, an Italian Trattoria, whose cuisine I am pretty familiar with having lived with Chris. I was given the job within three hours of dropping off my resume. Boy did I walk into a shit storm.
It was an existing restaurant that had just hired a new chef and was starting their new menu that week. Apparently the chef was a dick and they had fired a bunch of people and others quit because of him. As a result they had the dishwasher making pizzas and she is still constantly fucking up. They were going from Italian comfort food standards to a slightly more upscale menu. It was pretty cool, they brought me in as a pizza cook and to work sauté.
Two days later the chef checked himself into rehab and I became the third most experienced cook in the kitchen. That has changed as they rehired the old Sous chef and an additional line cook. I am now working all the prep, which is the level I am most comfortable at. I start at noon and am out by 7:30. I am a little pissed about the pay, which should be higher. After the Chef and Sous I have the fastest knife skills in the place and can pretty much cover every position in the kitchen, whether pizzas, salads or sauté. They said at the end of 30 days we could sit down and negotiate a higher wage.
The Trailer Park
I am currently living with my roommate from my junior year, Jimmy. Jimmy is 50. We met when he decided that after having cancer he was done being a carpenter in southern California opting to become a marine Biologist instead, thus he enrolled in college. Back in my college days I moved into an on campus apartment with my friends and we had a random roommate. That roommate was Jimmy.
In many ways we are both grouchy old men. He constantly bitches about how lazy and stupid most kids are, how we have been babied our whole lives, have no sense of style, make shit music, have this attitude of entitlement and are basically emasculated. Some of that is true. I thought I would move back in with him since he was older and had his shit together, and didn’t seem like a slob. I was mistaken. He has all his shit piled in the living room. It has been two months, and he is constantly promising to do something about it. Any attempt I make at getting the piles of beer cans out is constantly thwarted. I thought the apartment was a mess because of our other roommates when we lived on campus turns out he didn’t help the matter.
I left finding a place up to him this past summer since I was not around. He is solely responsible for my degradation down to trailer trash. “Hey man it isn’t really a trailer park, there aren’t meth heads running around and cars on blocks, the grass is mowed” It is a bunch of mobile homes, ie, its a trailer park. The woman next door has her daughter, grand daughter, daughter’s boyfriend (who is not the father of her grand daughter) and her boyfriend all living in the same house. She mows lawns in the trailer park to make money, but hey at least “the lawns are mowed”.
Our landlords are completely racist, the other day they told Jimmy that “We have a timeshare down in St. Thomas, but there isn’t much to do there and there are too many n*****s. They are getting pretty pushy too.” They also feed all the stray cats in the neighborhood so it is somewhat like the Dumpster Cats of Westmont except there is no compact button to crush them all with. On top of that rent isn’t substantially cheaper than elsewhere in Wilmington and it is far as fuck from any sort of social life I could have here. It is so far from all the bars and where everyone else lives I can’t get a cab. I have to crash at a friend’s house. Social life, bye bye.
Getting My Freak On or Lack There of…
Speaking of social life, wow, I forgot all my friends have pretty much moved on. I have two female friends who are here but busy working as waitresses, so they are not any fun these days. My buddy Kacey is off becoming a pilot. My friend Nick is still around but he doesn’t really go out and I hate his girl friend. My friend Jacque is going through a bad break up and is a shut in these days. There are a few kids still on the team that I am friends with from when I was on the team, but since I am a coach there is a limit on the social interaction I will allow myself to have with team members. While I would make exceptions for them, I am keeping myself out of team parties until the season is over.
Things did not go as I had planned here. I am currently weighing my options. I really want to bail to Morocco for the winter but that is financially out of the question, unless I get some things turned around. I need to get the fuck out of Wilmington, though I am not in the biggest of hurries. I can always return to California. I am very interested in checking out San Fran. I know I always have a place at the Lisanti Palace in Court, as well as some other connections I made traveling . I wouldn’t mind getting the work Visa and doing a year in New Zealand.
I also want to see how the Peace Corps pans out. I would be super stoked to get that but it is quite competitive and frankly I coasted through college, not doing all I could to set my self up with a strong resume. Part of me wants to return to the primal side of things. Something I have ignored and barely fostered for a few years now. I want to nurture that part of my soul as that has always made me the happiest I have been outside of when I am surfing. I just don’t know how that can pan out with relation to my future. Happy Twenty Fourth Birthday.
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