Late yesterday afternoon I rumblehogged out to the beachy areas of Venice and Santa Monica. Blue skies, warm air, T-shirt weather. I didn’t walk on the beach but I was close enough to smell the surf, and it was wonderful. But at the corner of Washington Blvd. and Ocean Ave I noticed all kinds of people congregating in groups large and small, lining up for takeout food and licking yogurt cones and without masks or gloves or any apparent interest in maintaining a proper distance.

I was wondering what was up, etc. These weren’t Huntington Beach bumblefucks but (presumably) liberal west-siders in shorts and flip-flops.

I made my way up Ocean and all was well. Maybe a half-block south of Santa Monica Pier I passed by some kind of mid-sized bar or cafe on the west side of the street, and the place was all but packed with rowdy 20somethings. They were happy and standing fairly close to each other and making a fair amount of noise. I should have pulled over and crossed the street and taken pictures of this motley crew, but I didn’t.

The general atmosphere seemed to be one of “fuck it, we’re tired of this COVID shit and we’re gonna see what we can get away with on a casual, fuck-all basis…let’s see if the bulls come over and bust us.”

I had my mask and gloves on and was taking no chances, but the natives were restless. Not everyone but a noteworthy percentage.