Living not always that easy in the summertime

June 11, 2013

Summer time and the living is easy. Seriously? I know the intent of some song writers years ago was to create the image that because it was warm out, things would be simpler. And they were, with visions of people swinging in hammocks, crowds at watermelon festivals, sitting on the front porch in that rocker on lazy days and kids chasing butterflies.

But there are so many ways that summer can run afoul of your plans and intentions. In fact, summer can be anything but living easy. And it doesn’t have to be anything major either. It’s called the summer annoying factor, stuff that is bound to get under your skin when normally you wouldn’t give it a second thought.

Little things. It’s sort of like sitting in front of someone in a movie theater, who has a jacket with Velcro pockets and he decides to open those pockets to search for his keys just when the killer is about to be identified. Like nails on a blackboard it’s just enough to grind your teeth into little nubs that resemble tiny baked beans.

Yes, there is a whole list of these things. Take for instance the beach pass that you put on your car windshield. It could be here that you purchase the pass at the state park or any other beach. Now, I’m not picking on them.

The problem is you have to remove last year’s beach pass from the windshield. In order to put a new state park sticker on your car, the directions clearly state you must remove last year’s pass first. The penalty for trying to plaster over it is one week in a room listening to an aluminum siding salesman.

Keep in mind, the pass is glued on with a material that is bullet proof and you couldn’t remove it with a blow torch; in fact, you would need some kind of heat seeking tool, most likely only found in use by the Israeli Army.

Now we can all agree the pass is well worth having; the beaches being some of the best in the country and the price is certainly right. We don’t have a problem with that; but broken fingernails, sharp gashes in the window and bottles of remover are a problem.

The sticker is also in a place that is a difficult to maneuver around to; it is supposed to be in the left hand corner of the windshield, usually behind a dashboard console. To remove and add the new pass, you should lie flat on your stomach on the hood of your car and hang your head over the open driver’s side door. Now lean in and apply either nail polish remover or another kind of agent that is guaranteed to strip the bark off of a tree.

Okay after a reasonable amount of time, you may smash the window with a hammer, glue the pieces together, stick on the pass and reassemble the windshield. You won’t be concerned after this, since your main worry will be the carpal tunnel syndrome you’ve acquired.

It happens on those summer plastic glasses too. There usually is a price sticker on the bottom, welded on for eternity. It’s a shame because the glasses are festive in colors and painted with images of crabs and flips flops. But instead of throwing your head back and laughing with your in-laws, all you can see is the bottom of the glass with $5.99 on it tilted toward your mother-in-law’s mouth. These things take on a life of their own. The positive thing is that this only solidifies in your mother-in-law’s mind what a shoddy housekeeper you are - so look on the bright side.

We have to remember that summer being the state of living it easy, often is a lot of work. And to put it in another songwriter’s words, “We’ve only just begun. “

  • Nancy Katz has a degree in creative writing and is the author of the book, "Notes from the Beach." She has written the column Around Town for the Cape Gazette for twenty years. Her style is satirical and deals with all aspects of living in a resort area on Delmarva.

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