M. SCOTT MORRIS: Sky nearly falls due to Frisbee ban

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

I love California. I haven’t gone often, but every visit was a great visit.
Jeff Hovious grew up as an Army brat, and we became buddies during middle school when his dad was stationed in Huntsville, Ala. The friendship continued after the Hovious clan was shipped to Los Angeles.
I flew out there in 1984, a few weeks before the Summer Olympics.
During a tour of Universal Studios, we saw Tootie (Kim Fields) from “Facts of Life” and Nicholas (Adam Rich) from “Eight is a Enough.”
In addition, we gorged ourselves on amusement parks with trips to Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm and Magic Mountain. We also took a trip to the San Diego Zoo, and spent another day splashing around a water park.
Good times.
I know what you’re thinking: Jeff was the best tour guide a 15-year-old could ask for.
He was even better when I returned to the West Coast two years later, but I won’t record those highlights because my kids are learning to read.
I can say we thoroughly enjoyed the Pacific Ocean during both trips. In fact, those beaches got me thinking about my old California adventures.
During an Internet search for very important and serious information that I can’t quite remember, I saw this headline: “L.A. County bans Frisbees from beaches.”
The phrase hit me where I live, and I felt as though something unholy and wrong was loose in the universe.
After clicking a link, I learned the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors recently passed an ordinance restricting the use of Frisbees, soccer balls and other tossable, kickable and throwable objects.
No Frisbee on the beach?
I’ve never been the best athlete. I run like a gazelle that’s been shot in the hindquarters, and I’ve warmed enough benches over the years to keep several teams toasty through an Alaskan winter.
But when it comes to Frisbee, I have what you might call skills. They’re meager skills, but I generally get flying discs to go in the direction I want them to go. I’ve been known to catch them, too.
I was indignant over the L.A. County supervisors’ decision, even though I’ve only been to their beaches twice in a lifetime and don’t recall actually playing Frisbee on those occasions.
The frustration lasted until I tracked down a digital copy of the 37-page ordinance. My fit was spoiled by facts.
It turns out you can play Frisbee on the beach if you do it in an approved location and the lifeguard says it’s OK. I’m guessing people with far worse Frisbee skills than mine were trampling over helpless sunbathers, so L.A. County took action.
My emotional roller coaster skyrocketed with the knowledge that it’s theoretically possible to play Frisbee on a California beach, so long as I don’t trip over anybody or smack them on the head. And, really, that sounds more than fair.
M. Scott Morris is a Daily Journal feature writer. Contact him at (662) 678-1589 or scott.morris@journalinc.com.

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