It’s 4:46 pm and now it’s time to make that decision whether or not I will do this. Normally I would remain on the beach until all my friends left, but this sunday, for the first time this summer, I got off work early. I mean really early; 2 pm on a Sunday is a blessing in the world of retail. So now I am trying to savor every moment of this glorious gift of a day. However, I am considering, for the first time in almost 4 years, of going to the Boardy Barn. I had told myself I retired from the Barn, and I thought I had meant it when I said it. I told myself that I was getting too old for it and that I needed to channel my energy and resources on my goals in life. All that was now being compromised because my brother was already there with Big Cat and his girl friend and her two best friends; Anna and Elena. Since Anna was hooking up with my brother, it would put me in the catbird seat with Elena. I would make a surprise appearance! -Popping up out of nowhere and shocking them all. “After a 4 year hiatus, Deebs is back!” The crowd roars. I can already see their eyes lighting up when I emerge from the herd of tank tops decorated with miniature smiley face stickers. I can hear their hearty cheers, when I jump out in front of them. The will all be elated that I joined the party; “DEEEEBBBS!” I will kick it into the next gear like when a rock star brings out a surprise guest performer. I would get everyone revved up, I’d do my signature dance move of getting low like I am going under a limbo stick. We’d dance, sing along, and long arm our beers until our t-shirts were soaked and our bellies were bloated with bud light. Drunk with fuzzy love, I’d take her under the tent and do a silly jig to “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da” with my feet splashing in brown puddles of beer mixed with butts and little white plastic cups. That’s when I would make my move. That moment that all the titillation builds up to; where you dare to cross through that threshold where friendly flirtation escalates to a mischievous joyride to romance. That moment was burning in my mind and it was only a matter of minutes before I would have to take the first step towards that glorious moment. Did I like her? I liked the way she looked in her profile picture. I liked her last summer after she came to my brother’s house late one night after the Beach Bar and smiled at me with wide eyes dark as espresso. We frivolously discussed our affinity for coconut. Big Cat’s girlfriend called me out and said I liked her best friend. I never denied it. What if I went to the Boardy Barn only to find her making out with another dude? What if my brother gets in a fight with Anna and they all leave us behind? What if I do hit it off, and her brother finds out I was lurking on his sister at the Boardy Barn. He is a life long friend of mine and he would see my arm around her on Facebook and would then want to punch me through the face…. My friends are all around, all them here drinking in the late sun rays. I have been waiting all week to see them here at the beach. I thought this is what I wanted, but yet I find myself yearning for a cheap thrill. Eric is setting up ladder golf and my best friend Carlos is asking me if I want to try surfing with him. He been asking me since last summer when he acquired a new board. He wants us to be surf bros. I tell him I am thinking of going to meet my brother at the barn. As an only child, he speaks in earnest, telling me that going with my brother would be fun. I wondered if it would be one of my last chances? However, that’s not why I was going, I was not going because it would be a last chance for one last hoorah at The Boardy Barn with my brother. I was going because I was a lonely boy, and the next day I would see myself on Facebook and be reminded of just how lonely I truly was. Carlos’ girlfriend overhears and chimes in: “Thinking of going to The Boardy Barn Deebs? You could make it there by six and have a solid two hours of fun before it closes.” I love her floating optimism. Carlos’ cousin Don is ranting about how only misery builds character, and the most creative people in history had to deal with a ton of adversity and that’s what molded their character into bold, daring individuals who went on to push the boundaries of imagination for all mankind. I wondered, when would I be more like them and less like me. Off in the distance, I see Carlos walking along the shore towards Ponquogue Beach with his board tucked under his arm. I get up, raise my arms over my head and inhale deeply, clenching my eyes shut. This should have never been a difficult decision. I begin to jog down the coast. Today, for the first time, I am going to surf.