Remember that list of “had to be there” moments?  Well, some of those probably won’t get covered.  But the day at Hampton Beach, NH is when I showed Hasty how to crack open a lobster; my son has mastered all but the tail.  It was the day of the black oil, not as in the X-files, though that’s exactly what it looked like.  We joked about it along the ride home, referring to it as lobster menstruation.  There’s one story.

Another story you’ll be reading about today is the beaver anus juice.  Hasty thinks I’m funny, but I’m not.  I just have the sense of humor of a twelve-year-old at times.  Anyway…

Hasty and HastyKid had never been to a beach before in this capacity.  The spot we were at on Hampton Beach was perfect.  The waves were big but not too powerful, no undertow or rip current, and the floor was level.

I’ve never been to the beach with someone who had no or little beach experience.  I have to say, I was deeply impressed that Hasty and HastyKid went in that water.  At a New England beach, the water can be extremely cold.  A lot of locals don’t even swim if the water is too cold.  Hasty and HK braved it and they spent most of the day jumping the waves and using the boogie board.  They didn’t want to leave, they were having such a good time.  I wish we could’ve stayed longer, but my wife had an early evening commitment.

After swimming and eating our lunch from the cooler, we walked the boardwalk.  I chose Hampton because kids love the boardwalk.  There are definitely more beautiful beaches than Hampton, though sometimes the beautiful beaches have scenic but not swimming quality.

Along the boardwalk, Hasty, HK, and Sage Jr. got their palms read.  The results weren’t very accurate.  It was like training day with two palm reading apprentices.  Speaking of palm reading, any palm readers out there who can read mine in the photograph of my hand on Hasty’s blog from the post “Levitation, Groping, and Baggy Camo Pants” ?

Sage hand

We also went to a store where we got ice cream and I bought Hasty and HK each a fisherman’s knot bracelet.  It’s a classic beach souvenir around here, and they never heard of them.

We went briefly in the arcade, and then after returning to the beach for more swimming, we packed up and went out for lobster.  Well, I got a grilled romaine head Caesar salad.  I didn’t really expect a whole head, but I left little on my plate.  Hasty and I of course saw innuendo in that, about how I like getting head.  But remember, it’s juvenile humor, not perverted or inappropriate.

Of course I had to order a Sam Adam’s because I wanted Hasty to try it.  I got the original Boston lager.  She said her favorite beer is Blue Moon, which is similar to Sam Adam’s Summer Ale, so I should have gotten that one.

Here’s Hasty at the outside dining area of the restaurant:


And here she is with her lobster bib.  This is after a day of swimming at the beach and she still looks beautiful:


And now comes the story of the beaver anus juice.  While we were eating, because it’s always entertaining to have conversations about disgusting things while people are eating, I don’t know how the subject came up but Hasty informed us that raspberry flavoring comes from the secretions of the anal glands of beavers.  We had a conversation about how someone happened to discover that.  What were they sticking their tongues on in order to think, “mmm, tastes like raspberries”?  You can probably imagine this discussion.

Later during the ride home, we had to stop for gas, and we went in the trunk to get some snacks, including Dunkin’ Donuts munchkins, (donut holes).  The kids had been asking for them all day, yet we were like, “you need to have breakfast first”, “you need to eat lunch first”, “hold off, there’s stuff like ice cream on the boardwalk”.  Finally they got them and began eating, until we realized HastyKid was consuming a raspberry filled munchkin:


We said that she was eating beaver anus juice munchkins, which she dropped, then chose powdered cinnamon instead.  And that’s the story.  Yeah, you did have to be there, but at least now you know to be aware that whenever you eat anything with raspberry flavoring, it could be from the anal glands of a beaver.

Strange place to end my piece, but I’ll pass you onto Hasty now…


The one thing Hasty Kid wanted to do more than anything else was to go to a beach. We have been to a few before but once in San Francisco the water was far too cold and another time in Florida there were like a bagilliongadallostromous amount of jelly fish.

Sage wanted us to decide which beach we wanted to try but there were too many to choose from so we let him pick and he picked one with a boardwalk in North Hampton. I wasn’t going to swim but Sage advised me to change my mind so I went through the extremely torturous process of buying a swim suit. After trying on more than a dozen that either squished my boobs like I was about to get a mammogram or made me look like Dolly Parton’s blow up doll twin I settled on a one piece that modestly and gently disguised them as pretty Hawaiian flowers.

10467817_526304087497127_888249946_nSwimsuits on and all of us packed up we enjoyed another trek together in the car. This time I think Sage schooled us on things like undertow and ocean safety. Sage Jr was going to teach Hasty Kid how to use the Boogie Board and Wifey Sage was looking forward to soaking up some beach sun. I was a bit surprised at how fun ocean swimming was. And for the record Wifey Sage has a killer bikini bod.

The water seemed to be in the 60’s and at first I thought I was going to freeze. Hasty Kid kept asking if she was going to get frost bite but after a few crashing waves it felt warm enough to stay. HK was a natural and she had so much fun. I got sunburned on my back; I always forget I have a back. Sage Jr was diving through the waves and HK had a blast screaming over each one on the Boogie Board.  I could have spent everyday for a week here, it was AMAZING and AWESOME.

10520349_651917904894720_1122517004_nWe had a beach picnic and the kids built sandcastles and buried each other in the sand.



It was so perfect we didn’t want to leave. We all walked the boardwalk where HK got her palm read. She was told she would have two children both the same gender and she doesn’t get along with a family member. I was told I would have 3 kids and would never have a lasting relationship. Well if 25 years isn’t considered a lasting relationship then I give up. I am kind of flattered though that she thought I was young enough to have two more kids at my age.

Sage bought us some knotted and braided bracelets and we had ice cream before heading off to find a lobster dinner.


The dinner was really good but when Sage decided to help Sage Jr with his tail we all felt a little queasy at what came out. Ugh…it was sooooo inky black. I had already ate my lobster tail, thanks to Sage cracking it open for me; or I might not have eaten it. He really seemed to enjoy cracking open the tails.

Like Sage mentioned above we we talked about raspberry flavoring. I love raspberry and was horrified to find out the truth about imitation raspberry.  You can read about where it comes from here but seriously, under what circumstance does someone discover that the stuff inside the glands of a beavers butt tastes like raspberry????


  1. What an incredible trip, filled with memories. The photographs alone say a whole lot– especially seeing a few I remember from Twitter, now part of a larger narrative.

    I don’t think I’m too bothered by castoreum. While living in poverty, I’ve learned to at least consider eating a few things that seem distasteful. Some things I grew to love a lot, and others… I still don’t like.


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