The good news is that we have The English Beat coming this Thursday to the Twilight Concert Series. I love The Beat. They are the sound of my teens, which makes me really old. However, I’m certain they are going to put on a great show. It’s happy, upbeat music that makes you move.
As I replay their sounds, I have a montage of pictures from my youth playing in my head, evoking the warmth and fun that was 1983; me at 17 on the beach with my best friend and the girls we were dating at the time. Sipping on Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers that my older brother bought for us, we skirted the laws about drinking on the beach, and being underage. This was the stuff of John Hughes films. It was youth at play in ways that are not allowed today. It was a time of freedom and a benign neglect from the authorities, so long as nothing really bad happened.
Those were the days when warnings were given by the police instead of tickets to appear. It was the wild west compared to today’s overregulated, overprotective, over-legislated world.
This year it seems like summer never arrived. I’ve done the summer events. I’ve been down to the pier on Thursday nights. I’ve noticed the great variety of foreign languages, but still, this year it doesn’t seem like the fun and freedom of summer has landed. I’ve walked the boardwalk for late strolls enjoying the warm breezes and summer nights, yet there seems to be something missing.
I wonder if that’s because the world has changed so much.
This summer has been dominated by bad news. From Steven Spielberg’s prognostications on the state of the movie industry and their flops du jour, to the past week being dominated by Amber alerts, and CNN updates of the manhunt for James DiMaggio, who kidnapped a young girl and killed her mother and brother. The incessant news of the bombings in the Middle East, the closing of embassies and the persistent whine of the political fringes of conspiracy, and resolute promises to get nothing done.
Hardly any good news was shared this summer and now we have Labor Day upon us in a mere blink of an eye, and then fall is right around the corner. The California Legislature is soon to be back for their last month of work before they quit for the holidays. Yes, you read that correctly. They have about 1,100 bills to review in the 30 days left. I’m guessing that there will not be a close reading of those bills. This is how we get bad legislation, written by a lobbyist, who is paid by industries to push a bill through. Thankfully many of these bills will die in committee or come to some other legislative cul-de-sac.
End of summer always brings melancholy. It’s the end of care-free days and back to drudgery. My law partner and I did our quarterly exercise of what does the next four months look like. We’re already planning the shut down of the family law practice for the Thanksgiving weekend, and then there’s the end of the year doldrums for divorces.
Teachers are already prepping for the start of school, which for Los Angeles Unified School District starts today, Tuesday. Thankfully for Santa Monica students they have until Aug. 22.
As Santa Monica continues its rapid growth and development, as the pace of the world continues to accelerate, it becomes harder and harder to slow down and enjoy the moment. But, frankly, I think it becomes ever more important to do so.
David Pisarra is a Los Angeles divorce and child custody lawyer specializing in father’s and men’s rights with the Santa Monica firm of Pisarra & Grist. He welcomes your questions and comments. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (310) 664-9969. You can follow him on Twitter @davidpisarra