I know summer is almost over, but y’all, we need to have a talk.
And it’s about our beach etiquette — or lack thereof.
Seriously, guys: Just because we live in Mother Nature’s playground doesn’t mean we should act like the bully who won’t let anyone else use the swings.
Don’t believe we’ve got a beach problem? Exhibit A: During a trip to one of Hilton Head Island’s otherwise beautiful beaches last week, I witnessed two little boys ride their boogie boards right over another little girl playing in the surf. She wailed like a child who has been run over by two hooligans in the making and their boogie boards of pain, and they laughed at her and ran off.
And their parents? Mom didn’t even look up from “Fifty Shades of Grey,” and Dad was asleep in his chair with a towel over his face, cigarette dangling from his fingers and bottle of Bud Light stuck in the sand.
Kudos on the parenting, guys. No, no, don’t get up; clearly your little gentlemen are doing a fine job raising themselves.
And here’s Exhibit B. I was at the grocery store the other day, trying to convince myself to buy whole-wheat pasta instead of the regular kind that doesn’t taste like cardboard, when around the corner came a teen sporting a teeny-weeny bikini ... and nothing else.
Which makes me wonder: What happened to no shirt, no shoes, no service? Not to mention: What in the name of our sandy shores would make someone think a string bikini is appropriate shopping attire?
Don’t get me wrong. I get that sometimes you just have to make a pit stop on the way home from the beach. There has been many a time when I’ve ducked into a gas station or grocery store on the way home from the beach to grab a drink or something for dinner, but I’ve always, always, always been wearing a beach coverup that, you know, actually covers me up — not to mention shoes.
The absolute last thing I want to see when picking out produce or chicken breasts is that much skin. I don’t care how tan you are or how bangin’ you think you look in that two-piece. This is a grocery store, not the resort pool. I know it’s hard to believe, but nobody here wants to see that, and you might need to face facts: You’re not as hot as you think you are under the cold hard fluorescent lights of the pasta aisle.
And I wish I could say that this was the first time I’d seen more of someone than I’d care to in a completely inappropriate place. I’ve also seen my share of bikinis at Target (and no, sadly, they weren’t hanging up on a rack) or people behaving badly at the beach.
Every time I spot someone rubbing out his or her cigarette in the sand and burying the butt, I want to scream. Every time a group of dudes tossing around a football like they’re Brett Favre steps on a kid’s sandcastle or hits an innocent bystander with the ball, I really have to stifle the urge to bury them up to their necks in the sand and let the tide come in.
I get it. You’re on vacation, or you’ve got the day off and you want to kick back and catch some rays and have a good time. I’m not saying you shouldn’t.
I am saying, however, that you should realize there are other people around you, and they deserve to have just as much fun as you do at the beach.
And they certainly don’t deserve — or want — to see your skinny tummy in the aisles of the grocery store. That’s enough to make a girl give up food — and the beach — for good.