We spent the greater majority of last week camping. It was lovely out with the temperatures in the 30's almost every day. It was nice to get away for a bit and just take some time to relax. I think I needed that. While we were camping I spent part of my time people watching.(you can read about that here.)
Also while we were gone, we went down to the lake everyday and spent some time on the beach. It used to be, that I was too wired to just sit on the beach. I couldn't stay for more than a half an hour before I was getting up to go for a walk or something. It seems that as I get older, it's easier just to hang out in the sun and the sand.
Lately, I've been thinking a bit about what it means to be a dude. Mostly because I've been submitting some of my posts to the Dude Write Challenge. So, in an effort to help achieve maximum beachy dudliness, I've come up with a few general guidelines to help you not look like a complete idiot while wearing the least amount of clothes possible without being completely naked.
1. If there's a choice, pit toilets should probably be avoided when you're at the beach in +30C weather. (90's F) It's safe to say, you shouldn't be staking your claim to the beach anywhere within a 100 ft radius of any outhouse. It's sort of like the government imposed 200 mile unsafe zone around the Chernobyl nuclear disaster site. Sure, you can go into the unsafe zone but you might end up with an extra arm growing mysteriously from your neck.
You can set up any place that you like but you certainly aren't going to look like a dude, kicking back next to the crapper.
2. Dudes never run in the direction of the toilet. It doesn't even matter if you're not going there. If people see you making a bee-line for the outhouse on the end of the beach, (especially if you're doing that clenched-ass shuffle) you're always going to be the guy who waited too long. The only way to successfully run to the can, is if you are dragging a kid with a hand clamped to their backside and a look of horror on their face. Sometimes that works.
3. You really can't go wrong with colourful board shorts. If you're the guy, walking onto the beach in the banana hammock and everybody stops to watch, it's not because you're a dude. It's more of the, "can't help but look at the train wreck" thing happening. Unless of course, you're Mathew McConaughey or Channing Tatum. And NO, I didn't go to that movie! I'm just saying! (But what's the deal with Channing Tatum? Dude gets to have two cool names for a name AND look like that? I hope he has really, really small feet!)
(just an added public service note. If you're going to be in a swimsuit all day, walking about and doing activities, that mesh lining in your suit can be as abrasive as sandpaper. You might end up with some very sensitive spots worn a little raw.)
4. For some unknown reason, every middle-aged guy still thinks he has chance to get with that, girl in her early 20's, bikini model. You don't. Most likely you never had a chance even when you were in your early 20's. Anyways, if you're drooling over that 20 year old girl with her boobs falling out of her bikini top, just stop it, it's not cool. Spend some time looking over at that woman that helped you drag the coolers, blankets, shade umbrella, and that stupid inflatable alligator from the parking lot. Chances are, she can do things to you that would make that inexperienced girl blush with shame.....not to mention that fact, she did choose you.
5. When choosing snack foods for the beach, you're best to stick with things that you can pop into your mouth in one bite. Things that require you to spit part of it back out, like cherries or sunflower seeds, can be dudely around a campfire but if have to spit pits or shells into a baggie at the beach, not so much. Also, you need to be careful with things that stain your fingers and lips like Cheesies or cherries. Dudes don't spend the day with orange, Cheesie fingers or purple, cherries lips! Not to mention the fact, too many cherries may send you running toward the crapper with purple lips.
That's all I have, I'm not going to say that if you follow these things, you're going to be a dude. You're going to have to do some of the work. But if you're struggling in you're dudlieness, trying to stay within these few guidelines while at the beach, might give you a leg up on that guy in the speedo, with the bag of cheesies, trying to get a spot on the girls beach volleyball team, while running past on his way to the pit toilet with purple lips. Unless that's Channing Tatum, then probably everyone is thinking how awesome he is.
..........oh, and to the woman wandering up and down the beach trying to pass her bra off as a bikini top, you weren't fooling anyone. But thank you for trying.
......... if you are Channing Tatum reading this, maybe you should try and follow me or something so we don't end up in this awkward situation again. Also, having you in my followers might add to my own dudliness.