We threw our first shindig yesterday.
Julie and Haley wanted to have a party and they got one. Relatives and friends came here to the point and gathered around a mountain of food. The sun came out after three weeks of gloom and the water was warm as the kids kayaked and floated and swam. The time flew by - when I looked up and found that it was 6:00 (we started at 1) I couldn't believe it.
I have always found Independence Day to be a day for reflection on the good stuff. Watching our guests and the visitors on the beach you could not help but to believe there is a lot of good stuff out there, especially for children in America. I think in the whole day I heard one little one cry for real but otherwise there was the digging and the splashing and the tossing and the inventing of fun that shapes growing up. It is in striking contrast to the rigid order of those cultures with which the country finds itself at war. It is in striking contrast to the historical fact of children conscripted in the last century to serve the Kaiser or the Tsar or the Fuhrer or the Jihad today. Independence Day remains an authentic American celebration of the freedom, of the options young people have in front of them because of historic sacrifice of all sorts.
There was one irreverant moment to share. There was a gentleman on the beach yesterday with a mustache that was amazing in scale. It was a bonafide street sweeper. This was a mustache with vitality, with density, with its own zip code. I told my sister in law that guy had to be in the Witness Protection program because it seemed impossible that anyone could grow such a thing. The cartoon villains of the Saturday mornings of the past did not have such a mustache. It may have made it impossible for him to breathe were it any bigger. It might have come with batteries. I worried that he might try to swim and would have to be rescued when it pulled him down. It was Sonny Bono's mustache on steroids. Other men with mustaches left the beach embarrassed for their puniness. It was the gigantic, hairy, example of American freedom of expression on Independence Day 2009.