‘Shock and Awe’ in Ocean Beach – a Reader Rant

by on July 17, 2020 · 18 comments

in Ocean Beach

View from OB Webcam, July 17, 2020 around noon.

And Not a Sign of Government in Sight

Reader Rant by OB Joe

Living on the outskirts of Ocean Beach, I wanted to see for myself what was happening down on the beach and see how people were coping with the new restrictions and renewed dangers from COVID-19. So I drove by the beach going down Newport Avenue and then onto Abbott Street.

I was not ready for what I witnessed.

Shock and awe, is the only thing I can say. I was shocked at how cavalier everyone was taking it, not wearing masks, not practicing social distancing. People walking down the sidewalks, past bars trying to be restaurants, people crowding each other.

Over at the foot of Newport, on the wall: no masks, people sitting next to each other. Even vendors setting up their wares on the grass didn’t wear masks.

It was like a regular, summer day at the beach. People carrying their towels, their boards, their umbrellas, their sunscreen. No masks.

Finally, along Abbott on the sidewalk, I saw a guy actually wearing a mask. I had to swivel in the car chair to take in the singularity of his act. Wow.

I was in awe, awe at the audaciousness of the people flocking to the beach around 1:30 in the afternoon. Not a care in the world. Laughing, talking, sitting with friends. Going into the water. The sun, the sand, the surf. That’s all that mattered.

And you know what else? There wasn’t a sign of government the entire time I traversed the scene. No police officers. No traffic control vehicles, no signs from government warning people about the need to wear masks. Nothing. Government was not in sight.

It was the wild west of COVID-19. The shock and awe eventually made me quite depressed for the rest of the day. All I could do was to go home and light up a bowl. Forget about it.


{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Deanna L Polk July 17, 2020 at 4:49 pm

Thank you! As a long term resident of Ocean Beach I have to live and try to “shelter” here, thank you so much for your observations. It’s like living in a science fiction horror movie. I won’t even go into detail what I have experienced here on a daily basis. Going for a swim I felt like I was on a combat mission in enemy territory.


Deanna L Polk July 17, 2020 at 4:54 pm

And…isn’t it wonderful how our Mayor and County Board of Supervisors have thrown us all under the bus by re-opening too soon, and being one of the only open beaches in Southern California, and by not enforcing Public Health Orders. They should all be recalled. And, let’s talk about the illegal STVRs operating while we are supposed to be staying home. As a retired Public Health Nurse who used to respond to outbreaks and help form disaster response plans for hospitals and clinics, it is a nightmare. True crimes against humanity.


Peter from South O July 17, 2020 at 7:59 pm

If anyone thinks that this is anything other than chaos, consider this:
1) The mayor of Atlanta and her family tested positive for the virus after waiting more than 72hrs for their test results. California has had to scale back (they call it reorienting) testing to get the interval down to a reasonable two days.
2) The sports teams that everyone seems to think are so damn important have their own testing access that is next day service. Priority processing in testing labs.
What is wrong with this picture?


Harold "Harry" Lott July 18, 2020 at 9:29 am

I have 2 rentals in OB for past 21 years, OBeacans are not the smartest group of people, that’s just my personal observation, yes, the rent’s have gone up tremendously and it keeps my La Jolla home mortgage paid, but the general population of OB remains the same miscreets, dopers, homeless, lefty wingnuts, and of course you Frank, I’ll just put you in a category by yourself, I won’t abandon the place just yet, but I am getting close, idiot’s can’t put a mask on, follow the rules OB-it’s simple.
Harry Lott


Obkid July 19, 2020 at 10:30 am

Harry tell us more about being a slumlord, you must be proud…..the people of la jolla are just like you – arrogant no-nothings living off of daddys money.


gee harry July 19, 2020 at 1:40 pm

Gee Harry, you sure are a grumpy fella. It’s probably the Zonies that are at your Air BnB… Please stay in La Jolla…


LA July 19, 2020 at 2:09 pm

Oh please Harry, go ahead and abandon the “Miscreets” of OB so you can continue to live only among the intelligent and virtuous people of La Jolla.


Chris July 20, 2020 at 4:40 pm

I suspect this is a fake post.


Frank Gormlie July 21, 2020 at 11:12 am

I really feel special now, thanks Harry. Perhaps we should change the name of the OB Rag to “Frank’s Miscreants, Dopers, Homeless, and Lefty Wingnuts”.


Mark Goodrich July 18, 2020 at 8:43 pm

CA Dept. of Public Health 7/16 figures show ages 18-34 are almost 35% of new cases with ages 35-49 another 25%. But their mortality rates are very low. I’ve spoken with young folks who have decided it’s ok if they get it; they won’t die. I heard no regard for whomever they might spread it to. Life’s a beach. https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/COVID-19-Cases-by-Age-Group.aspx


hOBie July 19, 2020 at 9:35 am

Thanks for this. You are right about Newport. It is shocking. All of these people not wearing masks are no better than the MAGA mouth-breathers. I’m sure many will be quick to blame AZ tourists, but it’s not just them. It’s locals. Neighbors we see everyday, walking around town with no masks. We need to start calling these people out.

Even in Del Mar, many residents have yard signs that say “Wear the Mask. Stop the Spread.”

OB could and should be better than this.


Obkid July 19, 2020 at 10:31 am

Not a sign of government In sight? Perfect thats how we like it in OB.


Sally Messenger July 19, 2020 at 2:42 pm

Please OB add public restrooms like la jolla shore!!!
Where are the public restrooms, when you need them!
My 77 year old grandfather was forced to dig a hole at the beach and drop a dookie in it, and cover it up, and wash himself in the ocean.
Please get some decent bathrooms, or at least a few portable shitters by the oceanwall,
Boy! we ALL will appreciate this deperate need.


sealintheSelkirks July 20, 2020 at 12:38 am

Hey Haaaarrrrryyy!

I live in one of the most extreme Trump voting, gun toting, right wing Republican bastions of Washington State, and I was in town today (biggest town in the south county area pop: 2,500). People sitting at tables at the wood-fired expensive pizza & beer joint on Main Street both inside and at the sidewalk tables that are no more than 3 feet apart. I saw one guy (1!) with a mask walk in, but when he came out with his two companions he pulled it down to eat and drink. The man and woman he was with never bothered. Across the street I saw people going in and out of the local hangout bar & grub (voted best hamburger in the county, excellent bbq ribs) with takeout food. Not a mask among them for the half hour I was unloading furniture into the 2nd hand store WEARING A MASK. People in groups walking down the street. NO MASKS. Walking into the auto parts store. NO MASKS. At Safeway a few blocks away some in masks, all the employees, but again many not.

But I did see a variety of semi-auto handguns on belts…for protection!!!! But no siree, no protection with masks. Only snowflakes wear masks so they can defeat Trump. Ahahahahahaha! The cognitive dissonance is just freaking astounding and none were what I bet you call “miscreets, dopers, homeless, lefty wingnuts.”

And the word is spelled ‘miscreants’ by the way.

There is a 27 yr old woman that lives in town, a Century bike racer and extremely active in the local Republican Party…you know, the wealthy people’s party? Until she caught SARS/CoV II and went down with Covid 1 a couple of months ago. She ‘recovered’ but can barely walk, is showing signs of kidney damage and other ailments along with possible brain damage but hopefully the ‘can’t form a coherent thought’ phase of this disease will pass. She’s lost 30 pounds, can’t even balance on any of her bikes much less ride one. It may not pass however. The science is still out on that but there are people who aren’t coming back very well…

This is a town that, in a legal cannabis state (them dopers and ‘miscreets’), will NOT allow medical cannabis patients to grow their own nor any kind of retail cannabis or medical dispensary to open, and paraphernalia such as bongs and pipes are STILL illegal to sell in any of the stores. But you can easily buy other terrible destructive drugs like alcohol and tobacco at the stores no problem, and oxy-contin and hydrocodone from the local doctors (all of whom are also wealthy and special).

And there are pickup trucks with ‘F*CK INSLEE’ our governor in big white lettering across the top of their windshields. Nice god-furring good ‘murikans all I’m sure, just like you.

But one can go ahead and give the neighbor (or someone you don’t even know) a freaking disease that could seriously disable them for a lifelong series of medical disasters…or kill them. As long as you have that there ‘freedumb!’

And by the way, Harry, some of these people were like you, from the ‘La Jolla’ mindset and the exclusive and very expensive golf and country club estates up the mountain outside of town. You can tell from the clothing and jewelry and vehicles they drive.

And how do I know this? Because I WENT TO LA JOLLA HIGH in 1970 (I’m in the yearbook) and dated a number of La Jolla ladies over the years. Even lived on Marine Street behind the Taco Bell for a while. One of those La Jolla ladies being waaaay up Exchange past the golf course in the VERY exclusive zone so I was able to know a number of La Jolla folk quite well over the next bunch of years. Wealthy and…given to many mindsick thoughts and behaviors and outlooks just like the one you posted. Talk about neurotic! The wealthy only think they are more intelligent, and that’s because they have a lot of money. Money does NOT equal intelligence. Except maybe cunning and sociopathy…do those count as intelligence or aberrant behavior?

FIFTY YEARS LATER there is still a mental disconnect with reality I see. If you are representative of the mind set still in power there, it certainly hasn’t changed much. Glad I don’t live there. I don’t care to associate with people with your mind set.

No offense, of course.



Chris July 20, 2020 at 5:01 pm

Maybe I’m wrong but I suspect Harry’s post is fake. His grammar didn’t seem quite what I would expect of someone affluent enough to own two rental properties he clams to have.

On another note, I grew up on Rancho Palos Verdes and when to Palos Verdes high school so I can relate. Tho I have met great people there too. There are always exceptions.


nostalgic July 20, 2020 at 5:40 pm

“Harold Lott is a DLC character added to Killing Floor in the Harold Lott Character Pack (also known as the Money Money DLC) on July 5th, 2012. He features a special cosmetic effect of leaving a trail of floating Dosh behind when he moves. This Dosh cannot be collected.” –sounds like your guy.


Peter from South O July 20, 2020 at 6:50 am

So today the news is that Hugo’s Tacos is reopening their take-out after reorienting their protective measures and hiring a SECURITY GUARD (remember . . . taco shop) in response to unruly customers that refused to wear masks for service.
This is where we are, people. ALL of the predictive models that show the wide range of body counts where wearing masks vs not wearing masks are compared depend upon an almost universal adoption of mask wearing.
Sure. What do you personally witness each day? 20%? 50%? The models, to be accurate, requires 97%.
Like I said a couple of weeks ago: we are going to have to go through the whole lock-down thing again, because we blew it.


sealintheSelkirks July 20, 2020 at 1:44 pm

And Peter from South O, it gets even better! Read this…reality is about to smash down like a moon crashing into the planet I’m afraid. But then too many are not listening anyway, yes? so here’s a rather grim view of the next few weeks below.


There Is No Plan (For You)

Unemployment, evictions, business failure, a pandemic and health crises are all here at once. The federal government doesn’t care.


Millions of people are about to experience the falling dominoes of economic disaster that will engulf their lives, destroy their wealth, and leave them with nothing.

Consider the astounding confluence of social and economic crises that are all barreling towards the American people at this moment.

In the midst of an enormous, unavoidable increase in national unemployment, the $600 per week unemployment benefit increase that has sustained millions is set to run out at the end of this month, and is unlikely to be renewed at its current level, if at all. Eviction moratoriums are expiring, and more than 20 million Americans could be in danger of eviction in the next four months. Many small businesses, their resources exhausted, are closing for good, and bankruptcies of large businesses are accelerating. Millions have already lost their employer-based health insurance, and millions more will. At the same time that schools will be unable to reopen safely, a huge portion of private child care facilities are going out of business. And city and state governments will face plummeting tax revenue at the same time as they face a need for increased crisis spending, leaving the future of mass transit and other public services in doubt.

Millions of people, through no fault of their own, are now facing long-term unemployment. They will, through no fault of their own, lose their health insurance during a public health emergency. Unable to pay rent, through no fault of their own, they will be evicted and put out on the streets. The businesses that employed them, which also provided the jobs to which they hoped to return, will, through no fault of their own, be forced to close permanently. They will be unable to find child care, through no fault of their own, and that will prevent them from seeking out new income. The cities where they live will, through no fault of their own, be forced to slash the services that could have helped them during their time of need. They will be lost.

This is the nightmarish future that we are all walking towards. And it is, I’m afraid to say, coming very soon.

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