Beach season is upon us. And by "us" I mean those of us in the northern hemisphere. Which, of course, is the better hemisphere, because of its contributions to art, science, architecture, music, and literature, while the southern hemisphere contributes only penguins. Hey, I'm just kidding. There's also koalas and the Lord of the Rings movies. Speaking of penguins, I watched a movie recently about penguins who have to stand in the same place for months keeping their one egg warm and put up with other birds who try to steal the eggs, and I'm wondering why the cameraman doesn't just shoo the predator away. It's like when Lady Di had twenty minutes to get to the hospital or she'd die, and she spent the whole twenty minutes moaning in her limo while cameramen just took photographs. My point is, the world would be a better place if, instead of everyone harboring nationalistic views in a world with almost 200 countries, we just harbored hemispheristic views. It's gotta be easier for two hemispheres to settle their differences and get along than for all these countries, some of which no one's ever heard of. I'm talking about you, Moldova. Anyway, many people aren't superstitious at all. But most superstitions have a strong basis in fact. Take Friday the 13th. This date has long been considered unlucky because it's believed to be the day Jesus was crucified. And let's face it: any day on which you get crucified is pretty unlucky. But there are probably more superstitions associated with the beach than any other place, and most of them make a lot of sense when you think about them. So let's run through them.
1. If you walk backwards down a fishing pier, you will soon be buying a new pair of shoes.
2. It is bad luck to go swimming in the ocean while wearing a necklace made from hunks of raw meat.
3. Red sky at dawn: nuclear bomb.
Red sky at night: terrorists blew up another flight.
4. If a flock of seagulls flies directly over you, you'll soon be washing your hair.
5. When your legs become hopelessly entangled in seaweed while wading in the ocean at three A.M., it is bad luck if the tide is coming in.
6. If you put down a large non-refundable deposit on a cottage, it will rain for precisely the amount of time you have the place.
7. If you step on a conch shell, your middle name will mysteriously change to Chellio.
8. Drop the tray holding your family's sandwiches in the sand, and you will soon be spending a large sum of money in a bad restaurant.
9. If you buy a a swimsuit on sale at the end of beach season and store it in a drawer during the cold months, when you take it out next year it will have mysteriously shrunk two sizes.
10. If a Portuguese Man-of-War becomes trapped in your swim trunks, your sex drive will inexplicably disappear for two months.