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Postscript: Building a Beach Playlist

It’s the summer and you have a day off. While you take advantage of the fact that you can sleep in, you don't sleep until noon, because you have an objective, an aesthetic design pulling at you: You're going to the beach.

The forecast called for cloudless skies, a gentle breeze, and a high of 85 degrees. You make the trip, first in your car and then on foot, your feet encompassed by flip-flops. You unfold your reliable, rusting beach chair and/or spread out a blanket or towel and you're just about good to go. A quick application of SPF-1 million is all that stands between you and leisurely, melting bliss.

Then the beach taggers—teenage fascists bred for the singular purpose of pinning a meaningless identification badge on your person and simultaneously extorting you—come and dissolve the vibe. With $5 day rates and $10 weekly ones, lots of people get suckered by these greedy twerps into buying the $25 seasonal pass—so you’re essentially buying access to a communal experience, a free concert that the ocean performs.

It gets worse from there: brazen, ravenous seagulls prevent you from eating anything, and you can't hear yourself think over the sound of young children whining about their destroyed sandcastles, and snapback-wearing bros nearby likewise engaging in their latest noisy, pointless microagressions.

Add in the guys who throw their frisbees just proximate enough to your location that you’re obligated to retrieve them, and your day of repose is almost entirely consumed. Before long, your fellow beach patrons have made you wonder why you didn't just stay in bed. When the ice cream vendor rings his bell, you barely register it, thereby missing the opportunity to be overcharged for a pre-wrapped Jack & Jill. Welcome to the Jersey Shore.


This nightmarish scenario is a reality, a reason why you should never go anywhere near the beach (or out in public, for that matter) without so...