Setting a Five-quart Limit on Beach Coolers No Big Deal – I Rarely Put Down More than Three or Four Quarts of Tequila Anyway

I don’t understand why everybody is making such a fuss about a new ordinance banning coolers larger than five quarts from Old Lyme’s Sound View Beach. What’s the problem? Three or four quarts of tequila are usually enough to tide me over. Anything more than that really does tide me over – I drift off, don’t realize the tide is coming in and wake up with waves lapping over my lounge chair.

In case you missed it the blankety-blanks on the Old Lyme Board of Selectman approved the rule last week because they thought too many people were stashing the wrong kind of beverages in their coolers. Here’s the letter from the Sound View Commission to the selectmen that started it all.

“The Commission has been reluctant to suggest a complete ban on coolers, citing inconvenience to our residents, particularly families with small children. However, this year we are seeing coolers of enormous size, toted by groups of day-trippers. These large size coolers also make it difficult for our Rangers to conduct a proper inspection and the general conclusion is that alcohol is often buried within.”

Ya think? What else are you supposed to put in a cooler? Lemonade?

First of all, that letter is totally bogus. Personally, I’ve always felt that parents shouldn’t be letting their kids take a sip of anything stronger than Bud Light, so throwing in that crack about it being such a hardship for families with small children just doesn’t make sense. Right from the get-go they’ve lost all credibility, as far as I’m concerned.

You know what I really wish they’d ban? Those weeny beach chairs that stick up only about three inches from the sand. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tripped on those damned nuisances, especially after I’ve been dipping into the cooler all afternoon.

You’d think the people you’ve stumbled over would have the decency to apologize for making you fall, but no. Instead they yell at you like it’s your fault.

Here’s another thing I’d do away with: Spoil sports who ask you to turn down the speakers on your iPod. I go to all that trouble to lug a portable sound system to the beach, you think everybody around me would show some appreciation when I crank up the volume and share my favorite play list with them. I guess some people are just plain ungrateful.

These are the same people, mind you, who complain about my cigar smoke, or if just one empty Cheetos bag happens to blow onto their blanket.

Honestly, it’s gotten to the point that going to the beach just isn’t that much fun any more. You can’t let your dogs run around, or grill hamburgers, or drive your 4-wheeler down to the water without somebody blowing a whistle.

For a while I was pretty excited because I heard they were planning to build a bikeway at Sound View, but then, come to realize they were talking about a special lane for those things you pedal.

Just what I need – more guys in spandex telling me to watch where I’m going when I’m doing wheelies with my chopper.

“And get a helmet!” they shout.

“Get a life!” I shout back.

Anyway, as I said, I’m pretty sure I can live with the five-quart limit on my cooler.

But if anybody tries to stop me from bringing my cherry bombs, Roman candles and M-80s, that’s where I draw a line in the sand.




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