Monday, May 25, 2015
Today was the Topanga Days Parade, a rag-tag, irreverent bacchanal open to anyone who can wear a funny hat and make a fool of themselves!
We used to go to the parade every year when our son was young, but for the last several Memorial Days, we've slept in. But this may be the last chance at Topanga Days for a while, so we got out of bed and took Jack down to the boulevard to watch.
The parade started out in typical fashion, with several annoyed drivers who must have slipped past the CHP closure finding themselves confronted by a parade marshal, coffee cup in hand, waving them off the boulevard.
No, you can't go through, lady. There's a gaggle of costumed kindergartners on their rainbow-spoked bikes coming through! Make way!
Anything on wheels can be in the parade - decorated floats, classic cars, scooters and skateboards. Our next door neighbor went past, drawing his daughter in a little red wagon. Golf carts were big this year.
The Topanga Lumber flatbed was a rolling bandstand, a quintet of grizzled old rockers strumming away.
There were many dogs, both in the parade and in the audience.
One of the strangest attractions was the Lost Cat float, with a tutu-clad man crying about lost cats, while another in a coyote costume mimed eating them. Not sure what that was about.
There were herb-bedecked golf carts, floats with trees and palm fronds, horseback riders and little boys on BMXs.
No themes, no rules, no restraints.
This being Topanga, there were peaceniks and hippies in abundance.
The local preschool had a float. There were neighborhood floats, floats by concrete and painting contractors, a float for a music school carrying the worst goddam band I've ever heard!
Roller derby girls brought their flash to the scene. Our friendly local airport shuttle service rolled a car along the parade route.
The local Chamber of Commerce passed a chamber pot of candy. As is traditional, candy was thrown from floats, but some of the paraders walked with their candy baskets, politely presenting treats to the crowds.
Sometimes it got a little disorganized, with people simply milling about on the roadway. A martial arts dojo stopped for a board-breaking demonstration that halted things for at least five minutes.
A guy rolled by in a giant inflated globe, directed by some helpful steering assistants.
Never mind, Jake. It's Topanga Days!