Monday, May 29, 2006

Sound Travels At The Beach

Ask my brother and sister, or anyone who knew us well during our childhood, and they will tell you this: sound travels at the beach. In an effort to keep us from annoying the neighbors, my parents reminded us of this at least 25 times a day when we were kids living in (then) sparsely populated Corolla, NC.

No, we could not call down from the upper deck to ask a question of someone in the driveway. Why? Sound travels at the beach. No, we could not, instead of using the phone, yell down the street to find out what time our friends' families were going to the beach. Why? Sound travels at the beach. No, we could not take the radio outside onto the deck. Why? Sound travels at the beach, and the neighbors did not want to hear Michael Jackson's Thriller album, nor -- as we got older -- did they want to hear Naked Eyes, some old Zeppelin album, anything by REM, or the latest from The Cure. Standing on the deck chatting with the cute guys building a nearby house? No way: sound travels at the beach and, also, that's trampy.

When we were kids, we found this whole "sound travels at the beach" thing pretty annoying. We used to roll our eyes and mimic our parents as they said this. It became a running joke, but one we internalized. We still spend a lot of time in Corolla, which in the summer months is well beyond sparsely populated. We find ourselves saying to one another indignantly, "Dude, turn down the radio, sound travels at the beach," and bitching about noisy neighbors: "Don't they know sound travels at the beach?" We're startled to discover that we're not kidding. Sound does travel at the beach.

My neighbors for this Memorial Day weekend at the beach clearly did not get the sound travels memo. They have been shouting to (and at) one another since they arrived, not just from their upper deck to their driveway, but from their upper deck to the end of the street and from inside their house to the person in their outdoor shower downstairs. To make matters worse, they sometimes do this as early as 8:00 in the morning. And they have New York accents. Not the endearing Tony Soprano kind of New York accents, but horrible whiny, nasal New York accents.

Since Saturday, their car alarm has gone off four times. You know the last time a car was stolen in Corolla? Yeah, never. I don't even lock the doors to the house, let alone my car, and these jackasses are guarding their Dodge Caravan like it's Blackbeard's treasure.

Isn't there a local ordinance for this one? I'd like to be able to call up the Sheriff's Department: "I have some noisy neighbors. With New York accents," I'd say. "Shit! New York accents?!," they'd reply, "We'll be right there!" and they'd rush over to disable the minivan alarm and inform the obnoxious New Yorkers of what everyone else already knows: sound travels at the beach.

So shut up already.

1 comment:

Brian said...

Oh, I dunno. I got into the habit of locking my truck up real good at night after my damn cell phone and three packs of cigarettes (and all my fucking change!?) were all stolen out of my truck which, by the way, was parked all the way underneath the damn carport.

Fucking tourist hoodlums. They're lucky I didn't find 'em that night after I took off after 'em with my big-ass crowbar.

They were quiet though, I'll give 'em that. But, for the most part, loud Yankee tourists have pretty much ruined any hope of having a good time there during the Spring and Summer.