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8/6/21 | 29/52

Next Tuesday Kyle's new book "The Most Fun Thing" comes out. There is a reading and reception to go along with it. Here's a little animation I put together promote the release! I'm really happy with how it turned out.

We've had a couple cooler days but the humidity is back to keep me sweating through several shirts a day. I've been changing them out when they get too saturated and heavy. I've also been supplementing my water intake with Gatorade and being extra vigilant about staying hydrated while I try my best to make the most of these beautiful days.

Blllllllloooooodddddd!

a necessary apology

I need to apologize. I have been a terrible listener lately. I'm just so excited about all the amazing stories and I want to share that excitement. If we weren't still in a pandemic world I'm sure I'd be talking to random people on the bus about the games. The Olympics still have me in a headlock. I'm sure my friends and family and cats and puppy are tired of hearing about them and everyone will be glad when they conclude next week.

So far my favorite things have been the stories about athletes from other countries. First time medal winners, weightlifters training with water jugs, high jumpers sharing the gold, runners who fall and get up to finish. Everyone deserves an award for being in great shape. I've never been in that type of shape, even at my best and I can be honest with myself and understand that my physical best is behind me.

What I like less is America’s expectation to be the ultimate gold winner. I don’t care to see the medal count graphic or hear about disappointment with silver and bronze. Events that don’t have a strong US competitor are relegated to soundbites and streaming. I wonder how the games are covered in other countries. Do they show basketball if they don’t have a team?

After making its debut last week without a USA gold medal, skateboarding went from primetime to online. I still tuned in. For both the street and the park I found the women’s events to be much more enjoyable and fun. The big revelation for me was that I didn’t recognize who I was watching in the events. Skateboarding has been a huge part of my life since I was a kid and while I understood the tricks, the skaters were mostly people I’d never seen or heard of. Who are these young Japanese shredders spinning 540s? Congratulations on the medal but you still don’t have your name on a board? No video part? What is this world ranking system?

On the final day of Olympic skateboarding I met up with some friends to skate a spot we used to session weekly. Lately it had been forgotten, replaced by new, closer spots. It happens. The curbs have some fresh chunks. There is a little more garbage and graffiti. It is still good to be back.  As we skated we talked about engagement photos and sump pumps and the return of pier 7. Two young ladies showed up and worked on learning 50-50s. Maybe they know the Olympians. Maybe this was their spot now that we’ve neglected it. Maybe skateboarding means as much to them as it does to me. Maybe it means something completely different. I don’t think they were talking about sump pumps but we all skated together and were mutually encouraging and it was a delightful summer night.

Two of my favorite people in the world, Tim and Joseph, have been off on an amazing adventure, biking and skating their way down the west coast. They’ve been gone over a month and I'm looking forward to their return. Hopefully we can meet up at the spot and skate and then enjoy some guacamole. I look forward to listening to their tales of triumph and fortune and fun from the road. When they’re done telling me about their trip they better buckle up. They completely missed out on the Olympics and I’ve got a lot of thoughts. I’ll probably start with a breakdown of 3 x 3 basketball.
 
 

Friend of the Week

This week's friend was sent in by Guy. "Let me just say that I'm grateful to have her and grateful I can give her a comfortable life. As a shelter dog that was skin and bones and heartworm positive, she clearly had a difficult time before my girlfriend and I adopted her. Sometimes things work out well."

If you would like your best animal associate to be featured email me 3 pictures of them and I will do my best to try and capture their essence.

Last Sunday I stopped to get tacos at a spot on California after skating Clemente. I ordered "2 steak, onions, cilantro," and they were promptly delivered with ketchup and mustard squeeze bottles. I asked which one was hotter and was told, "the green but just a little." Having no chips to test them I went ahead and gave one taco a healthy squirt of the red salsa from the ketchup bottle, the other taco got the green sauce that lives in the mustard container. First taco was perfect. Excellent charred salty seasoned steak bits, the red sauce adding a welcome bit of heat and brightness. Finished that up in 3 bites. On to the next one and on the first bite I felt the heat on my tongue. The second bite it was warming my lungs. The heat kept spreading with each bite and as I biked home I could feel the heat coating my stomach and radiating out of my eyeballs.

I was going to write about that for the essay this week but I had a nagging feeling I'd already written about it before and then it dawned on me that I keep living that scenario over and over. Maybe that's the equation I need to solve to move forward or to reach enlightenment. I'm not sure what the answer is. Leave the salsa off? No chance. Stop eating tacos? Not an option. If the salsa is hot only use a tiny drop? I just don't think I have that kind of common sense. I'll keep trying to figure out a solution and let you know if I ever unlock the answers to life's great mystery. In the meantime, if you ever miss an email or you see that it's Friday and no email has been delivered, you can always check out the archive link on the Serial Dispatch instagram. If you know anyone who might enjoy this weekly special delivery send them in that direction.

Solid,
Tim

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