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Draplin Design Co., North America

Chad Smith is in town. God damn, it’s good to see him. Shaggy and bespeckled, he’s out here on a retrieval mission for his little sister’s automobile. She just finished up some time in LA with her boyfriend/classmate and they are heading back to Michigan. Chad flew out and is driving the rig back to the Midwest, taking the “long way” home through Oregon, the Southwest and wherever-the-hell-else he cruises through. He’s luggin’ a pile of camera gear with him, a portable Ansel Adams of sorts. No scenic vista or interesting composition is safe. We’re enjoying meals out together, time around the ranch and today, I’m gonna drag him into the circus at work. Show him some frontline action in the war on snowboarding journalism.

Melissa Update: She’s cold. Testimony: Secretly, in the middle of the dark, Southern Californian night, she silently awakens and climbs out of the sleeping quarters. I’m oblivious to the everything at this point: vulnerable, peaceful and dreaming. She tip-toes across the Factory Floor to the electronics mainframe. There she turns up the heat to ungodly levels, well past the “sauna” mode. She slithers back into her quilted cocoon, falls asleep then positions an elbow in my back soon after.

So I wake up, in a pool of sweat. And there she is, a little heating pad with a body temperature of around 140 degrees, absolutely content.

In California it is always hot. And you wanna know what? I’m fuckin’ sick of being hot.