Beach Necessity

By Kevin Boyle

Are you equipped with the one must-have beach item that, so far, only the most savvy beach homesteaders possess – the one they want to keep a secret?

Well, before I make the big reveal, keep in mind that I might be a little late with this one. As someone who has been caught wearing sneakers on the beach on a sunny summer afternoon, I’m not one to trust on the latest beach trends.

What do I know? Back in my day, when men wore one-piece singlets to the beach, the fanciest, the most show-offy thing, was someone with a koozie to keep his Bud cold.  The rest of us would look at him…this guy…he’s a pro.  Meanwhile, we’d have to gun our beer or have the sun turn it into pee-warm broth.  Come to think of it, our beer was more likely a Munich or Piels than a Bud, but I digress…

Anyway, seems nobody told me, but last summer I must’ve awoken from a coma because the only thing that hadn’t changed was the ocean. Koozies? How quaint. Now people establish beach camps, they basically RV without the RV.

You know those snow and dune fences the Parks Department have installed? Now people bring their own. They cordon off chunks of beach and act like they have all the rights of a piping plover.

Gone are the red Radio Flyer wagons.  Now there are beach vehicles with Mars Rover tires and pop-up tents, I’m pretty sure they come with kitchenettes and hot tubs.  Warm beer?

Now people have Yetis, wine thermoses, rechargeable blenders, and coolers that hold ice from May until the parking restrictions are lifted.

Man, I remember sandwiches that came in tin foil and were more sand than which.  Now, beach days are catered.

With all this fanfare, beachfront property (which in these terms is setting up closest to the water) is more sought after than ever. People have been known to set up beach chairs on Memorial Day for the 4th of July Weekend.

But with all this planning, the fight for sand superiority can be literally washed away with a wave.  But the ones in the know know. They know when and where to set up, not at all disappointed that choice beachfront has been taken in the morning.

The real pros know it’s not the size of the tentpole; it’s the motion of the ocean. And the way they know about the motion is because they’ve got a tide clock at home.

A tide clock. That’s what you need to compete, to be a beach boss.  But don’t take it from me. I wear sneakers to the beach.


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