TCL SoCal GTG No. 2 - SUCCESS!! (Kinda, sorta, maybe)
Yes, it actually happened. And this time, we didn't look like traffic!
The GTG was spawned by this thread:
I was the first to get there (because I'm awesome):
Then bzcat arrived, his entire family in tow (yes, all 3 cars):
Then things began looking up:
That's right, TCL+friends actually almost filled up half the In-N-Out parking lot. Compared to the meet two years ago, this was *just a tad* bigger .
Some people brought their children and vulgar-plated monster-mobiles (hint: hold a mirror up to your monitor):
That kid's dad is apparently the Stig.
After a solid 45 minutes of meet-and-greet and me receiving a VWVortex hat from Lwize (), everyone got antsy. However, we were still missing SVT2888, thetopdog and PsyberVW.
A text to SVT2888 revealed that one of his calipers had failed and he would not be able to make it.
A text to thetopdog revealed that he was stripper-ed out.
We had no text communication with PsyberVW.
greatfox somehow deemed me "Leader of the Pack." I tried to explain that I had never gone up GMR from this direction but had instead always taken another route. I screamed that I had no idea how actually get there from where we were currently standing. I attempted to abdicate the throne but my feeble attempts were crushed by the forceful thrusts of phryxis's walkie-talkie (what were you expecting?) into the palm of my right hand and some Google-map directions into the palm of my left. That was that. I was Leader of the Pack.
"To the cars!" I yelled, and we set off from In-N-Out. What happened next was a clear predictor of my leadership skills as I led everyone down the wrong way, out of a "Do Not Exit - Entrance Only" driveway, leaving everyone to violate California state law by crossing two solid yellow lines on a left turn.
We were now northbound. Toward the mountain range.
A quarter of a mile later, I pulled over, as I wanted the entire group to catch up and be one convoy. This was my second failure, as the convoy ended up being so long that we blocked an exit ramp off a freeway. I only realized this when I heard scratchy screams from the convoy's tail emanating from my walkie talkie, demanding that I kindly “START F&#*ING MOVING!!!!”
So, off we went. Route 66, out first turn. Apparently, not everyone made it. Actually, scratch that… The majority of the cars did not make it. I, as the leader, should have realized this. I did not.
Mistake #4: I miss the very next turn (I guess I should have actually looked at those Google Maps handed to me), dragging what I thought was the whole convoy through downtown Glendora (tell me it wasn’t scenic, you f&^%ers! Come on, tell me it wasn’t!). I was worried about someone in the massive convoy getting a ticket from the trigger-happy Glendora PD, especially with the 25mph speed limit and stop signs every 45 feet.
Imagine my relief when SoCalDubber pulled up next to me and I realized that I didn’t need to worry about the convoy getting tickets… BECAUSE I LOST 75% OF THE CONVOY. In SoCalDubber’s words, “I’m the last guy and there’s a whole bunch of nothin’ behind me.”
I decide to take everyone to GMR my way, as I am the leader (and, as there’s no other option). We get to the bottom of the hill, where my walkie-talkie comes to life. Greatfox’s passenger says something that sounds suspiciously like “wait for us,” so we wait at the bottom of the hill… And wait… And wait. Then, I sensed that the group was close to a coup. I regained control with the cry of “Up the hill!” (or, possibly, “F*^% it, let’s just get to the overlook, maybe they’re there). Away we went, up GMR, an E30 M3, an S4, a 135i (doctor-driven, in case anyone needed medical attention), a Mk5 GTI (with a GoPro), a “stock” Mk4 GLI, an Evo X (driven by a guy named Ivo), an MkVI GTI, a Boxster S, an S2K and a Fiat 500 (is that right?).
Suicide bicyclists and motorcyclists notwithstanding, we were doing well, just cruising along. Halfway up, we encountered a CHP motorcycle and squad car but they were busy arresting an unsavory character and were apparently glad to see a bunch of yuppie-mobiles which 1) posed no threat of armed resistance and 2) were a great source of revenue. They were so glad to see us that they actually waved and smiled (or maybe they just saw the GoPro stuck to the GTI’s hood and wanted to look great on camera).
We arrived at the top, where we found…
The rest of the group was not there. At all. Again, I decided to make everyone wait, in the hopes that they would appear “at any moment.” Several hundred moments later, the underlings became antsy. We decided to drive to the Lodge, in the hope the remaining members of the convoy didn’t simply abandon us and go have their own little party somewhere else.
Just as everyone swung their doors open and prepared to proceed up the mountain, a great roar reverberated from the canyon below. We stared in amazement as the monster approached. We didn’t know what it was… But, it was clearly powerful, nimble and fast. Finally, it crested the ridge. It was…
PsyberVW and his Miata!
It turned out that he woke up late, had driven for two hours, had taken the wrong canyon, started miles away from us and somehow found us milliseconds before we took off for Leg 2.
Here’s video of how it happened from his point of view (3:20-3:30) – Warning: low-res, nausea-inducing.
Having exchanged pleasantries with THE MODERATOR, we all took off for Leg 2. I told bzcat (the only one who voiced that he was GPS-capable) that I didn’t know where the lodge was and would rely on him to HONK when we got near.
So, Leg 2. Again, a great uneventful drive except for 1) a lizard crossing the road (it lived), 2) suicide bicyclists (they lived), and 3) an old man wearing a neon vest at mile marker 11, shaking his head at us in disappointment (he also lived).
12 miles later, we were at Mt. Baldy and it was a cool 125 F. In the shade. We saw a lodge and parked. Still missing the rest of the convoy. Where the hell were they? Then, PsyberVW, taking control (I guess that’s why he’s a moderator, eh), stated that his GPS showing that we still had 0.1 mile to go. At this point, I flagged down a Mt.Baldy Neighborhood Patrol officer (who was pushing 102) and asked her if we were at the Bighorn Lodge.
“Why no, sonny, you’re at the Mt. Baldy Lodge!”
“Um… Where is the Bighorn Lodge?”
“Up the road a bit”
“Like, 0.1 mile up the road?”
We walked away as her companion began talking about his experiences during the war (I’m guessing, as I wasn’t actually listening). Back to the cars (approximately 10 cars making random U-turns in the town’s main thoroughfare can sure create some havoc)…
We drive 0.1 mile and see the Bighorn Lodge. I realize 1) that the lost group of the convoy (or are we the lost group of the convoy?) is parked and sitting in the shade, consuming the Bighorn Lodge’s free ice water at an incredible rate and 2) that bzcat DID NOT HONK!. He’s already in the shade, relaxing and laughing at his former compatriots as nm+ stands in the middle of traffic, pointing at his watch. Yes, we’re late! It’s because we stopped and waited for YOU F*&$ers! Something that YOU PEOPLE (yes, YOU PEOPLE), did not do.
Anyway, we filled the parking lot of the Lodge.
The ordering of food was somewhat interesting, given the fact that this quiet little one-waitress/one-cook tavern was flooded with 30 hungry TCLers + friends who don’t take kindly to waiting (or $3 sodas). There was a near-revolt. About an hour later, everyone (except alfafan [who just take the insanity any longer] and PsyberVW [who waited it out, was offered a free meal and refused, instead paying for it] had eaten.
The famous steak sandwich (not pictured, the famous apple pie):
As we ate our meal, a Ford Explorer with its tire popping off the rim pulled into the parking lot. The occupants (who looked like fans of the methamphetamines) decided to jack up the truck with a bottle jack, only to realize that the factory lug wrench did not fit the bling MHT wheels.
An S2K driver (who I do not believe is on the TCL but came to the GTG anyway) loaned these characters an S2K lug wrench which (strangely) fit perfectly. This resulted in 90 minutes of sitting around and waiting for the Expedition-meth crew to finish jacking the thing up and lots of time to 1) stand around the Expedition and offer advice (1/5 of the group), 2) stand near the cars and complain about the heat/Expedition/how long the food took (3/5 of the group), 3) sit in the shade and watch both groups as well as the Expedition while sipping cold ice water (approximately 1/5 of the group) and 4) fall into a river (greatfox).
45 minutes into it, the group was ripped apart by internal dissent. Those who needed to go to the OC drove off, taking the canyon back. The rest sat around and waited for the Expedition (cursing the good Samaritan in the S2K who they could not now leave behind) until the Expedition-meth-heads realized that they could simply undo the lugs with the S2K wrench and install a spare with the OEM wrench. WE WERE FREE!!!!
Away we went, back through Glendora Ridge and down GMR. All except Lwize, who was in a hurry to get to Coscto. He took the easy way down and paid for his indiscretion with a nail through the tire.
That is all. Good times, everyone. See ya in 2014.
Oh, and before I forget, we have to do the awards! Here they are, no particular order. Feel free to add categories I may have missed.
Most Represented Profession: Lawyers. There were 4 of them. I guess we do have too many lawyers.
Most “Stock” Jetta: DOUBLE DEE. He promised a stock Jetta and he delivered.
Most Aerodynamic Antenna: Lwize
Best Boxster (no roof): bzcat’s brother
Best Boxster (roof): That USC guy… Wait, bzcat’s brother is a USC guy. I sense a pattern. Bastards.
Best Car Name/Person Name – Ivo driving the Evo
Best mid-engine CRV: phryxis (loving the Mugen components)
Best no-show Lamborghini: thetopdog. Honorable mention: JtotheG
Best BMW with Paint Issues: MylesPH1. Honorable mention: VadGTI (hey, only half is patina’ed!)
Best RS4 Envy: bzcat
Best Suburban Mom-Mobile: choochoo (complete with car seat)
Best Suburban Dad-Mobile: RS4PD (complete with Recaro car seat)
Best “I had no idea where I was going and randomly found TCL” Performance: PsyberVW
Best Gift for Vad’s pre-B-day: Lwize (hat)