Posted by: GeekHiker | July 6, 2009

4th In Brief

This year’s 4th of July elicited some discussion amongst my friends, mostly circulating around the following:

“Uh, got any plans?”

“Nope.  You?”

“Nah.  We should go somewhere.”


“But where the hell can we go that isn’t going to be insanely crowded?”

Keep in mind, this conversation happened, off and on, over several weeks.  I guess we all felt a bit indecisve on the subject.

Three day weekends can be a difficult beast to tame.  It often seems that half the population of LA decides to head out of town, leaving right after work the day before, resulting in an evening commute that’s pretty much a total nightmare.  The process reverses itself on the last day of the three-day weekend, as everyone tries to come back at the last minute in order to stagger groggily into work the following morning.

During those weekends, it can often be nice to stay in LA.  With everyone gone to Lake Mead, off to exotic destinations, or simply doing things in Vegas that will remain in Vegas, LA turns into almost a small town, with open freeways and empty museums.

Until a couple of weeks ago, I figured I’d be staying at home myself.

Then a friend remembered that his family had a small cabin up in the local mountains that might be available.  He looked into it and it was, so last-minute invites were sent out to a bunch of folks a few days before the weekend.  Ultimately, only myself and a couple of other guys went.

Yes, it was a truly manly trip.  We rebuilt the cabin from scratch with our bare hands.  We hunted bear, killed it with a pocket knife, and ate the meat raw.  We drank a keg of beer each and felt no effects.  Buxom beautiful women, amazed at our testosterone-laden prowess, fell into our arms.  We grunted, they swooned.

Okay, not so much.

Instead, the weekend involved hiking, sitting on the deck and reading, BBQ’d burgers (a long-standing GH family 4th of July tradition), some bad post-hike pizza (that revisited me at about 3:00 in the morning in the form of heartburn), a truly amazing number of bad jokes combined with intelligent conversation, and watching fireworks on the 4th over lake.

And, naturally, beer.

We beat a hasty retreat back to LA Sunday morning, miraculously avoiding all the post-holiday traffic.  Instead of sitting on a freeway, I spent the afternoon reading and relaxing, capping off the weekend watching a movie Sunday night.

Really, what more can one ask of a holiday weekend than that?



  1. Wow, sounds like a great weekend! The “manly trip” part is HILARIOUS!!! You have a flair for writing, you know that? Luckily I wasn’t drinking or eating anything when reading it!

    What movie did you watch? Will you recommend it?

  2. That sounds like heaven…especially the part where you beat the traffic back into town. I hate traffic. It sux.


  3. Grunt!

  4. swoon!

  5. The title of this post led me to believe I would be seeing you in photos of your undies. alas, bear killing and beer drinking just.doesn’t.compete. 🙂

  6. Sounds like a great 3 day. I’m sure buxom, intelligent, swooning beauties would’ve been a nice addition.

  7. Bad jokes + intelligent conversation = the best way to spend time with friends. I did much of the same, except for the few hours I carved out to sit on my favorite rock in Charmlee Wilderness Park and watch the hawks riding the ocean breeezes…

  8. Sounds like a perfect holiday weekend. I’m glad you had a good time.

  9. Sounds lovely. Next year, pick me! I am buxom and I’m sure I can learn to swoon 😉

  10. What a great three day weekend! It all sounds lovely and avoiding post-holiday traffic? Icing on the cake.

  11. That sounds great. I’ll take low-key trips any day over big productions. There’s nothing better than a hike and good read, washed down with a beer. Glad you had a good time.

  12. Awesome! That sounds fantastic. I battled the crowds in Chitown for the Taste of Chicago and go figure (I knew you’d appreciate this) I will likely be featured in their marketing material for Chicago 2016! Freaky hmmm? I guess I broke their 200 m rowing record. Piece of pie, and on crutches too!

    Meanwhile, swooning is overrated. Trust me. 🙂

  13. K – I watched “King Corn”, which was fairly interesting. But I recommend more “Grand Tornino”, which I watched this week and thought was spectacular

    Ms. H – Avoiding traffic in LA is something of an art…

    Homer-Dog – Heh

    Spleeness – If only you’d been there!

    Kori – So sorry to disappoint! 😉

    Me – It would have been the perfect addition!

    Magenta – I’ve written about Charmlee before. Great place, isn’t it?

    Imogen – Thanks, it was pretty darn good

    Ms Behaviour – You’re more than welcome to come. We had enough beer, that’s for sure!

    Dingo – I rather preferred veging at home to sitting on the freeway

    Mel Heth – Yeah, low-key usually works for me

    CripKitty – Nice! But, I have to say, having someone swoon over me would be a pleasant change from the rejection, know what I mean?

  14. sounds like a fun manly time 🙂

  15. Yeah, that’s actually how I discovered your blog! I couldn’t remember what road Charmlee was on, and when I Googled it you came up. If you want let me know the next time you go and I’ll share the location of my special “get your head screwed on straight” meditation rock. I’m not good at zen moments but something about that spot does it for me.

  16. Sounds wonderful!

  17. geez, i am WAY behind on the comments. sounds like a really relaxing trip. some of my fondest memories of my life with D are of the two of us going upstate to his family’s summer home. he would chop wood and do other manly stuff and i would just read under a tree. *sigh*
    now the closest i get is at the local hipster-infested park – lol.

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