Sunday, December 23, 2007

Dawnhawks at the Diner

We were treated to the early morning subculture in our little town of San Juan Capistrano (not so little, actually, at 35,000 "peopulation") as this frosty day broke and we headed to Mollie's, you know, the place by the railroad crossing.

It was 7 a.m., when we thought they opened, but the sign says 6 on Sundays, 6:30 the rest of the week. We've only been going there for 17 years.

Two sheriffs cars parked outside, but no sign of them when we entered. Just an old guy sitting at the counter with his travel coffee mug and the perky old hostess, thin as the toothpicks on the cashier's desk, greeting us and asking "Two for breakfast?" Nobody behind us and no supper menus in sight, ah well, we followed her anyway to a booth immediately behind the man at the counter.

Garrulously, he greeted another geezer who arrived steps ahead of us, launching into a barrage of commentary on topics I took no notice of, but that were punctuated frequently with "bullshit", echoed by his companion. He passed a half gallon E&J brandy container from in front of him to his neighbor who sniffed it, saying he stopped drinking long ago and resisting Mr. G's goading to go ahead and taste it.

He wore a building materials sweatshirt and shorts, sported a crew cut and boasted of plans to take the "sled dogs" to the beach this morning, when a third denizen rolled in, semi-consciously, plopping down on the end seat, taking a load off his puffed up ankles lightly covered with flipflops. Number three, cap pulled down to keep the fluorescents out of his stupored eyes, asked Mr. G if he was planning to go down to Calvary today, but Mr. G demurred.

Young blonde waitress responds to Mr. G's inquiries "did she like the Christmas gift he gave her" to which she replied, "see how tight these are" pointing to her sub navel jeans, "can't you see how tight these are? I ate four candies yesterday and three today."

By 7:30, new faces started arriving, all old, obviously regulars, in festive wear, bearing gifts, and the aging surfer types bundled up against the cold except for the shorts-and-flipflops uniform they never doff--not even for weddings or funerals, since among their crowd those only take place on the sands.

The only conclusion is that there's a world I've somehow been missing in my own burg until now.

Until next time...


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