Back From Vacation With a New Perspective

21 Jul
Ah, a nice relaxing week at work...

Ah, a nice relaxing week at work...

NORCROSS, GA – I’m sitting in my office after a week of vacation, almost feeling worse than when I left. Tired, a bit cranky, slightly lethargic, you would think that I spent a week at a P.O.W. fantasy camp rather than a week at the beach. But this much is true: when you have a kid, there is no down time. Nada. Zip. Zilch. And when your kid is the apparently the genetic recombination of Houdini, Evel Kenevil, and the Energizer Bunny, there are only two ways to approach life as her parent – Caffeinated or Highly-Caffeinated.

So, my game may be off a bit today.

I had intended to bring back plenty of hilarious pictures from the beach, pictures that would illustrate the beach wear of the South – from tank tops and jean shorts to haute coture, the fashions flaunted along the sands can be quite amusing.

I had intended that. But I got sand in my camera and it went KABLOOIE. So, no pictures.

I had also intended to present some video footage of the preferred beach activities in the South. Bocci, football, volleyball, body surfing, and just plain old laying out on the beach are just a few of the frollicking good times had by all.

I had intended that. But I spent most of my time helping Rachel wrangle our daughter, so the camera never even got out of the bag.

So, what do I present to you, my 13 readers as a gift from my time away? Why a simple, yet elegant, top ten list of things I saw while at the beach! Cheesy, I know. But it’s all I got.

 Not the thong type...

 10. THONG SONG: Not one, but FOUR men wearing thongs, men that shouldn’t even have been allowed out of the house wearing board shorts. For future reference, if you haven’t seen your toes in five years, a thong isn’t going to do much in the way of flattering your body.  


 9. FAMILY TRADITION: A father – FATHER! – buying several cases of beer. For him. Then buying his teenaged daughter and her friend beer at the Wal-Mart. Why not just go the whole mile and set them up with smokes, weed, and a get-out-of-jail-free card?


 8. MULLETS APLENTY: I even wrote a whole post on this phenomenon. There were more mullets at Myrtle Beach than at an Achy-Breaky Heart reunion concert. If you’ll stare closely at the picture to the left here, you’ll see that absolutely NO ONE can pull off a mullet.


7. WIPEOUT: It’s astonishing how difficult body surfing really is. You would think that all you have to do is position yourself in front of a wave and gently ride the crest towards shore. You would think that, but you would be wrong. Body surfing essentially entails getting your face slammed into the ocean floor over and over again for hours on end. Almost everyone looks silly while attempting it, and the number of Necks who face the wrong way while trying it is staggering.

6. SEAGULL DEATHMATCH: Ever tried to eat on the beach? It’s hard. If you take away the constant wind, the smothering heat, and the fact that everything will eventually get sand into it, no matter what you do to protect it, dining al seaside can be a pleasant experience. Not so much, though, when you’re being divebombed by hordes of angry seagulls. These oceanic predators can snatch a sandwich faster than than a Good Old Boy can shotgun a PBR.

5. GEEK SPORTS: Nothing funnier than watching two guys with a combined weight of 120 pounds attempting to throw a football in high-velocity wind. Did you know that the average distance a nerd can toss a football is -15 feet? That’s right – due to the ocean breeze, most nerd tosses end up BEHIND the thrower. Suffice it to say (and I know from experience) you ain’t picking up chicks that way.

4. THE JACKED-UP GRILL: All I can say is that I feel extrememly guilty now for ever forgetting to brush my teeth. I saw some dental disasters on the beach, and I can’t even truly poke fun at them, because I’m sure that not all of them were from neglect or indifference. Some folks genuinely can’t afford to go to the dentist. But to those that smoke, chew and drink their way into bad choppers, I have but one thing to say: please remember it’s impolite to speak with your mouth open.

3. GIRLS NO MORE: As the father of a girl, I have to confess to great dismay at the bathing suit selections for young women. I saw more pre-teen girls in barely-there bikinis than I did men with beer guts. Honestly, it was troubling to think that in a few years my daughter will have lost her innocence not because of her moral choices, but because some ninny fashionista decided that girls under the age of 21 should “shake what their mama gave ’em.” I hate to send Ella to the beach in a gunny sack, but to preserve her modesty, I just might do it.

2. “DON’T TOUCH MY CELLPHONE, OLD MAN!”: You know those annoying people who talk during movies? The ones that scream out directions to the characters on screen? People like that should be escorted from the theater to preserve the experience for the sane viewers. People who weigh 98-lbs., have on a black tank-top, a fake Henna tattoo, and threaten to beat 58 year old men like a rented mule should be taken outside and tased. Friday night, while watching THE DARK KNIGHT (a MUST SEE by the way) some wingnut starts a ruckus in the middle of the stinking movie with an older man. Apparently the old dude tried to take Nerd-boy’s cell phone. What followed was half-annoying/half-hysterical as two guys who were never going to throw a punch threatened to beat each other senseless for 5 solid minutes. How big a poofball were these two? It only took three 16 year-old theater employees to break up the fight.

And, the Number One thing that I saw at the beach last week:

1. ELLA FEARLESS: My daughter, not afraid of wave, nor beast, nor fat guys jogging. It was so much fun to watch her explore, and to see that some people are just born brave. Which migh explain the Thong Guys mentioned at number 10.

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