Rio Grill

Sea Otter Smorgasbord

Good evening and welcome to the Carmel River Grill. My name is Otto. I’m a Sea otter and I will be your server tonight. Our smorgasbord tonight features an excellent buffet of seafood delicacies. Might I recommend the Pacific purple sea urchin? It is simply marvelous. I could crack one open for you here at your table on my rock hard abs. Why yes, I do workout. Mainly, I swim a lot. Oh, I’m not into numbers. I don’t like to qualify my life. So, I couldn’t really say how many miles I do. Let’s just say that I’m in the water every day, all day long. So, what can I get you for dinner?

We took Dad out for his birthday. Frank joined us and we went to the Rio Grill in Carmel Valley. This is Dad’s and Chris’ favorite restaurant that they frequent weekly. It was a lovely, low-key affair. Unfortunately, our waiter was not named Otto and wasn’t a Sea otter either. Other than that everything was fine.

In the interim, between Point Lobos and the Rio Grill, Dad trotted out his old high school year books. He graduated in the Canal Zone, near the end of WW II. He also showed us Mom’s high school year book. Dad’s painted a picture of a way more diverse student body than Mom’s Massachusetts one. Mom seemed to be the more popular of the two. Part of that may be that Dad attended the high school in his junior year and then split his time at the junior college for his senior year. Even though his JC year book is less than half the size of the high school one, the Zonian (It sounds like a sci-fi title.), he still got way more play in the JC’s Conquistador. Blurry photos aside, a poem he wrote is best featured:

The Engineers

These are the lads with mechanical minds,
The experts on curves and parallel lines;
Of ions, of volts and ohms they know all,
And can survey a mountain, no matter how tall.
With brains so loaded right up to the brim,
The problem remains of keeping them trim.
They have to be oiled and wound every day,
Or else the poor fellows will go far astray.

He wrote this poem as a liberal arts major. Subsequently, he got an appointment to Annapolis, where he graduated with a mechanical engineering degree. He went on to garner a masters and a doctorate in mechanical engineering. He retired from the Navy as a Lt. Commander. Subsequently, he got one more doctorate in biomedical engineering, from Michigan. He sold his patent on what would become the best-selling sleep apnea device of its day. Along the way, he spawned me, another engineer, who in turned spawned Dave a fourth generation engineer. My Dad’s dad was an engineer too. In the early 70s, when my Dad was shopping his NIH post-doc grant, he entertained Harvard, before settling upon Michigan. Dave chose Harvard for his post-doc and I know that Mom is so very pleased to finally have someone in the family who is a doctor at Harvard.

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