Thursday, June 16, 2011

A day at Black's nude Beach

I had to go to Black’s Beach.

Not sure of its status today, but in the swinging ‘70s Black’s was a large nude beach in San Diego. I was a weekend disc jockey at B100 in 1976 and even though I had lived in San Diego a few years before (when I was full-time at another station) I had never made the pilgrimage. But I was always curious. Who wouldn’t be? You can see vaginas without a cover charge!

I was discussing the Middle East crisis with one of the other jocks from the station one night over tequila shooters and the conversation logically turned to Black’s Beach. Finally, he shrugged and said, “Well, let’s just go.” Damn! Why didn’t I ever think of that? I had to be on the air the next afternoon at 3:00 so we decided to go at noon; giving us a good couple of hours of sunning and ogling.

Black’s Beach is located in La Jolla and -- not surprising -- it’s very secluded. To access it you had to negotiate a half-mile steep path down a sharp cliff. That five-dollar cover charge was looking pretty good to me.

We finally reached the bottom and oh my God. It was as advertised. Filled with naked people, most of them young, many of them girls.

We set down a blanket and it was showdown time. Now understand that I had a hard time in junior high taking showers after gym. That’s just embedded in Jewish DNA. My people tend not to “streak”. We’re not, by nature, a “let it all hang out and frolic” culture. But the DJ who was with me stripped down in seconds. He obviously wasn’t Jewish, which was visually apparent the minute he lowered his pants.

So I figured, what the hell? I was actually very proud of myself. I took off all my clothes. I figured, if I can eat pork I can do this.

I was surprisingly less self-conscious than I thought I would be. We tried to play it very cool. At first I noticed a few guys checking us out as they walked by. I thought, “How juvenile. Still cComparing sizes like schoolboys.” Then it occurred to me -- my friend and I lying on this blanket – we could not have looked more gay if we tried. And it didn’t help that we put sunscreen lotion on each other’s back. What a couple of idiots.

So I grabbed my towel and set it on the sand a safe distance away. The scene itself was rather remarkable. Gorgeous naked college coeds, some oldsters far more comfortable with their saggy flesh than anyone viewing them were, and a number of athletic-looking dudes on the shore tossing the Frisbee around, trying to get noticed. Ironically, there were no blacks at Black’s. My guess is the Frisbee flingers would have been far less proud of themselves if there were.

I decided to take a walk along the beach. I figured that was the most discreet way to check out the scene without seeming obvious. Y’know, I’m walking to the snack stand or the restrooms or the lifeguard station. Except… there were no snack stands or restrooms or lifeguard stations. The only reason to walk along the beach was to scope people out.

There was one girl lying flat on her back on a towel, reading PORTNOY’S COMPLAINT with her legs spread wide apart. Talk about the perfect Philip Roth moment!

I didn’t approach her. What was I going to say? “Have you ever seen so much masturbation in a book in your life?” Besides, I rationalized that even if we had hit it off and she invited me to call her, where could she write the number?

At 2:00 we decided to head back up. Our work here was done. One thing we had forgotten to consider: that steep cliff. Getting down was tricky and time consuming. Now we had to climb. Straight up.

We’re climbing and climbing and I finally check my watch and shit! It’s 2:30 already. We’re only halfway up.

So now we had to essentially sprint. I thought my lungs were going to burst. Got to his car, exhausted, and completely out of breath, and sped to the station; arriving two minutes before I had to go on the air. I’m wearing nothing but a bathing suit. I sign on by gasping.   By 4:00 the sunburn below kicked in.  I did the last three hours of my show with Popsicles on my lap that I bought from the vending machine. 

Things I learned from the experience:

Wear sunglasses. No one can tell you’re staring.

Pack a sandwich and rappelling gear.

This is what Justin Timberlake’s home pool area must look like every Sunday.

Level 60 sunblock protection means nothing to areas never before exposed to the sun. You might as well just squat over a lit bar-b-que pit.

Without wearing a cup, a Frisbee becomes a potential lethal weapon.

and finally: 


That was my one and only time at Black's Beach.   And even to this day, if someone hands me a Popsicle my natural urge is to jam it down my pants.


Swinefever said...

Hilarious, thanks.

The initial decision reminded me of a few weeks ago. I'm looking at the cakes in a bakers shop window with a friend of mine and he suddenly pipes up with "You know we could totally buy a whole cake, just for ourselves!" So we did, and we ate the whole damned thing.

I'm 48 and he's 46 but you know those warnings your Mother tells you as a kid, they stick with you dammit.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this hilarious story, you made me order Portnoy's Complaint ;)

Mike Barer said...

I read this thinking that you would slip a Weiner joke in.

Anonymous said...

Mike, that is too easy!


Mac said...

Funny stuff. The ones in your picture must be new to nude sunbathing; those cheeks are brighter than the sun.

MikeFab said...

Your experience and observations were damn near ditto for me as a college student in the early 70's. Some buddies and I decided to go to a nude beach near Zuma Beach north of L.A. Very similar long, dusty walk, and when we arrived, there really weren't that many people. Only a few women lying about, which is the main reason we went, so that was immediately disappointing, but there way more guys than we had ever anticipated. This was like sitting in a seedy 'nudie" bar where all the patrons were also naked. Yuk! I'm pretty sure several of them were gay mainly because of the way they were "checking us out".

Most of us that have watched "Seinfeld" remember George and his "shrinkage" issue in one of the episodes. I crack up every time I see that because it also happened to me at that beach when I went into the water. As I recall, I spent the rest of the afternoon lying on my stomach. I never went back.

Debby G said...

One day in 1990, after having recently moved to San Diego, I went to La Jolla with a guy I'd started seeing. He suggested walking to a beach that he said was supposed to be really pretty. He was trying to trick me; he knew it was a nude beach and I had no idea.

So we got to Black's Beach. It was 100 percent naked men except me, and I kept my clothes on. I especially enjoyed watching the nude beach volleyball game, and enjoyed even more that I got the last laugh.

Or maybe the guy who took me to Black's Beach got the last laugh. He ended up marrying me.

Anonymous said...

In Florida, the curious have it much easier. Just start walking along the shore in Miami Beach from the Delano Hotel northward and eventually, there' a single sign warning you that you may encounter nude sunbathers from that point forward.

Tip: Don't look too hard for the sign or you'll miss the 100 or so naked women too lazy to walk three blocks.

YEKIMI said...

I could never imagine doing that. Especially now. If I took my clothes off at a nude beach, Emergency Rooms in a 15 mile radius would be inundated with people who suddenly gouged their eyes out, martial law would be declared, barfing would continue for days, maybe weeks, afterward. Gay guys would turn straight, women would become lesbians, sea animals would avoid the area for decades. Nah, I'll keep my clothes on.

Wes Parker in Iowa said...

Had a buddy whose folks lived in the neighborhood, so they had a key to the gate and we could drive down to the beach. Definitely enhanced the experience. Waves were awesome there. I also remember the SDPD having a Suburban with monster tires so they could cruise the beach an issue citations to those who were unclothed outside the'Naked Zone.' Swimsuit Optional was the legal euphemism.

Anonymous said...

Yekimi, I'm right there with ya, babe! Clothes don't come off unless absolutely necessary...shower, surgery, etc. Dear Hubby says he doesn't mind, but I know better, lol.


jackscribe said...

Terrific jog of my memory. I lived in Solana Beach for the summer of 1976 and made way down that trecherous hill to the beach on several occasions...and let it all hang out. Cross my heart, there was usually a volleyball game set up. a bouncy way :o)

Ialacro Velcro said...

Funny stuff! Next time you're in the Seattle area, ask Rick to take you to Fraternity Snoqualmie. If he still lives in the Issaquah area, he'll likely know where FS is located. And if he says he doesn't, he's lying! I'd volunteer to take you, but I'm terrified that all the fraternal brothers and sisters will be my age, exposing more wrinkles and folds than you'd see at an origami convention.

Swinefever said...

Hey Yekimi, I'm with you on that. Last time I was the beach a crowd gathered and people start hosing me down to keep my skin wet while firemen tried to roll me back into the sea....

Lou H. said...

Wear sunglasses. No one can tell you’re staring.

That's probably not the only part of the body that needs to be concealed.

RCP said...

Yekimi and Rob: Don't feel too bad. Believe me, looking like Adonis ain't all it's cracked up to be. At times, the adulation becomes quite invasive.

YEKIMI said...

Hey, at one time I DID look like an Adonis, especially from being a wrestler in high school. Then a bunch of my internal organs decided to stage a revolt and it was all downhill from there. [Least they waited till I was in my late 20s to start malfunctioning.] The only internal organ that hasn't gone crazy yet has been my spleen and I think it's just biding its time.....

cadavra said...

Hey, the last time I got undressed at the beach, Hancock came along and threw me back into the water. Ba-DUM-Bum!

Chas said...

I attended UCSD in the early 70's and Black's was the beach closest to the school. It was one of the best reasons to go to school there and something my friends and I took advantage of as often as possible. We also thought it was very cool that we passed Theodore Geisel's (Dr. Seuss) house on the way there.

Notso Nekked said...

I wonder if any station has ever done a live remote from Black's Beach.....Hawaiian Tropic would be a great sponsor.

Steve Wytyshin said...

this is a great place to perv on girls. Me and my buddy do it all the time. There's nothing gay about lying naked with another man. The chicks think your less creepy.