Wednesday, June 5, 2019.
We were up by 7am today and did our usual breakfast routine of oatmeal and morning TV talk shows. Fred was exceptionally loving today and gave the best, long hugs and kisses.
The plans for the morning were to eat breakfast, shower, go and get the Jeep washed at a nearby place, and then meet Coach Mike (Mike Micione) and his son Matt for lunch at Chick-Fil-A. But we messed around like we do and didnt get the Jeep washed, so that bummed Fred out.
We left to meet the Miciones around 11:45am. By the time we got to the Valencia Chick-Fil-A, it was a mad house. It’s apparently a very popular spot to eat. The drive-thru line was insane and inside, it was just as busy.
Fred grabbed a table while I stood in line. Matt got there just after us. He had been at work nearby and didn’t want to miss an opportunity to see “Coach Fred.” (Everybody out here calls Fred, “Coach Fred” and Mike, “Coach Mike,” from their Little League coaching days.)
Fred and Coach Mike were officers together years ago at Newhall CHP. But they are still most well-known in the area from Little League.
Matt and Fred sat and chatted about Matt’s budding career as a Hollywood stuntman/precision driver. It’s pretty damn cool! The Micione family is well known in the industry for their stunt work. They’ve been in some major films and TV shows.
Coach Mike arrived just as I got to the front of the line. He has great timing! He bought lunch for us all and the food was on the table before I even grabbed ketchup from the condiment station. This Chick-fil-A moves exceptionally fast.
We ate and talked for about an hour, catching up and reminiscing. Coach Mike and Fred raised their kids together. Fred’s son Matthew is best friends with Coach Mike’s son Matthew. And Fred’s Matthew married Coach Mike’s niece Sarah. So they are really one big family, in a soap opera kind of way.
Matt had to go back to work so we all said our good byes. Coach Mike came back to the RV with us to get the 5¢ tour. Fred proudly showed him around and then we hung out and chatted for about an hour or so, until Fred was ready for a little rest.
We were so glad to see Coach Mike and Matt. The Miciones were high on Fred’s list of people to see on this trip so I know he feels good having had the opportunity.
Fred rested for about an hour while I did a little TRX and yoga. Alissa had thought Ava had a half-day today but it turned out she didn’t so we decided to meet her for dinner later.
We left the park around 4:30pm to meet her at the Blue Dog Beer Tavern in Sherman Oaks, CA. It was about a 30 minute drive down there (because we were going to opposite way of commute).
Alissa’s apartment was within walking distance of the Tavern and was in such a cute neighborhood. It looked super convenient and up-beat. I was a little jealous of her setup. It seemed like the perfect area for a young up-and-comer like her. I kept thinking of the Mary Tyler Moore theme song while we were walking around.
The restaurant had hundreds of beer taps hanging from the ceiling illuminated with Christmas lights. The walls were covered with framed photos of people’s pet dogs. It had a great, hipster type vibe. The food was great too. But the music was a little loud for casual conversation as you had to almost yell across the table.
We had burgers of course! I really enjoyed mine. It was super juicy and the bun was sweet. Sweet buns seem to be the thing this year. I totally approve.👍
We hung out there talking until Ava got a little bit squirmy so we walked back over to Alissa’s place to see her foster kitten Socks.
It was the tiniest kitten and so calm and accommodating to Ava’s sometimes rough play. Fred cuddled with it for a little while.
We talked about so many things but then the conversation turned to the benefits of medical marijuana, religion, politics, the black lives matter movement, & LGBT issues. Fred got quite excited defending his more conservative views.
When Alissa’s friends came over, the somewhat electric ambiance went from a calm but passionate conversation to full on protestor square off at an Anti-Trump Ralley!
I was so frazzled and afraid Fred was going to get too worked up in this frenzy. And he totally did. I had to drag him out of there around 8pm because we still had a long drive back to the RV.
I tried to convince him that a single conversation with Fred Oakes was not going to change the minds of youthful, impassioned liberals living in the idealistic democratic world like LA. It’s not going to happen, no matter what you say or do. Why pick a fight and waste what breath you have left in your lungs in a frustrating, pointless argument. It makes no sense… Unless you’re Fred Oakes, and you just can help yourself.
We got back to the RV, decompressed for about 30 minutes, and then went to bed. We both slept pretty darn heavy.