Thursday, July 01, 2004
the beautiful NJ shore
Next week I'm taking the week off and going on vacation. Where does a guy like me, who has everything he could ask for (except an attractive [or even an ugly] girlfriend, friends who care about him, a fulfilling job, ambition, and tolerance for homosexuals) go on vacation? Why, North Wildwood, New Jersey of course.
North Wildwood (not to be confused with Wildwood, its much more seedy, bastard cousin to the south) is a magical place, as long as we all understand "magical" to mean something like "whatever the opposite of magical is." It's a beach town like many others - endless motels whose obnoxious neon signs reflect off their swimming pools at night, miles of hot-sanded beach filled with every body type and every complexion imaginable, a boardwalk on which one can spend about $100/minute, etc. But what's amazing about it is that my entire neighborhood at home in Philly simply transplants itself into North Wildwood in the summer, and has done so for as long as I can remember.
And I love it. There's something indefinable about it, but I just love being down there. I hate the beach (which requires shirtless-ness), I hate the pool (which requires shirtless-ness), I hate the boardwalk (which is filled with Canadian tourists), but something about being near the beach, with all that sea air and all those tanned girls in bikinis, just makes me very happy.
And I love seeing my old friends, some of whom I haven't seen in years. Some friends I want to see more than others - remember, I spent my youth as the token chubby possibly gay smart funny kid who was unathletic but loved sports and who was best friends with all the attractive girls and listened to them drone on endlessly on the phone for hours about their boyfriends when he gladly would have taken the life of any person on earth so that he could sleep next to them and/or smell their hair for just a few minutes but wound up only going to sleep depressed with his dick in his hand listening to songs like Spin Doctor's "How Could You Want Him (When You Know You Could Have Me)" and U2's "All I Want Is You".
Wow - I just read over that last paragraph, and it's amazing how little things have changed. The only difference between who I am now compared to that description above is that we need to change "smart" to "not as smart as he thinks" and "possibly gay" to "definitely bi". Otherwise, we're all set.
Anyway, the best conversations are the ones that happen in bars with friends from long ago who at the time of the conversation are wasted out of their minds on Miller Lite and pills:
Old friend: "What's up Jay?"
Me: "Nothing much. How you doing?"
Old friend: "Good - how's Boston?"
Me: "Actually, I'm not in Boston anymore, I graduated and I'm in New York."
Old friend: "Really? Congrats man. Any idea what you want to do now?"
Me: "Actually, I've been in New York for about three years now - I work for a law firm, but I'm not a lawyer."
Old friend: "You're a lawyer? Wow - congrats man. I'm in the union myself - making about $70G a year."
Me: "Um, congratulations?"
Old friend: "Yeah. Well, alright Jay. Nice talking to you. I'll give you a call when I need a lawyer."
Me: "Um, alright - take it easy."
My plan for the week? Get drunk, get really sunburned, and eat a ton of cheesesteaks. I'll be staying with my aunt, uncle, and 10 year-old cousin at their place. They're all very cool, but I have a feeling one night at midnight my cousin Sara is going to ask my Aunt Rhonda:
Sara: "Mom, why is Jason laying down in the middle of the parking lot crying and singing? It's bed time!"
Aunt Rhonda: "Um, he's happy. He's crying because he's so happy. And he loves to sing."
Sara: "Then why is he throwing those beer cans at cars that go by?"
Aunt Rhonda: "He's, uh, just playing catch."
Sara: "I don't like cousin Jason."
Aunt Rhonda: [as she looks out the window and sees me peeing in the neighbor's bushes, saying to no one "You like this? Yeah? How does this suit you? You know it!"] "Neither do I, Sara. Neither do I."
So today and tomorrow could not go by fast enough.
And while on vacation, I will not be doing any posting, so you're all going to have to figure out something else to do until July 12. And if you have anything to tell me (i.e. "I just got tested and I have herpes - thought you should know" or "I've been reading for a while and I think we should get married - my picture is included"), email me now.
[Speaking of emails - some great ones this week. If I haven't gotten back, I will, and if I'm not too busy during the day, I'll post some tomorrow. But the chances of me posting them are not very good.]
And any friends of mine who are going to be in North Wildwood either this weekend or all during next week, drop me a line, because I will probably be bored out of my mind by Monday. At the very least, I promise I will buy you some drinks (maybe).