You step into the ocean. You wonder what insensitive, sociopathic creatures are swimming around your feet. Maybe a shark. Maybe minnows. Maybe horseshoe crabs. They’re all scary. They can all do you harm. They don’t care about you. They don’t know you and would rather eat you than get to know you. This alone is disconcerting.

You then step on what feels a greased watermelon. It’s some tar. You hate it when there’s tar on the ocean. This started when you were a kid and not as fearful of things as you are now, an aging adult devoid of a spine. You wish you could be sure there is only sand and no creatures when you step in the ocean. It would remove your leeriness. You see yourself as a normal person. You are at the beach wanting to get refreshed by the water. You don’t need all that goes with it, the corrosive contaminates that drops you to oceanic depths of despair.

Danger, keep away from beach

The water itself is contaminated. Always has been. This began, I’m guessing, around the time of Christopher Columbus. But how can I or anyone certain? You start thinking about why the water is a brownish, greenish, yellowish color. It looks dirty. You envision fishing boats out at sea with men standing over the edge relieving themselves polluting the water. You are sure this has happened many times. You are swimming in water that those men wreck. Men don’t think. Men don’t care. They drink and then pee off the side of boats. They have never cared about swimmers. They only care about themselves.

You dive in and dunk your head. Your face hits the underbelly of a glassy-colored jellyfish the size of a basketball. You then start thinking about where all the sewage back home ends up. You are not sure but you suspect it might be dumped in the ocean. People don’t talk about this much. A taboo subject, everybody learns at a young age not to bring this up during the family dinner hour. Probably just as well.

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You are not naïve, however. You know there are few places to put all the trash and sewage people generate. One big place is the ocean. There is no bigger place. You deduce where all that trash goes. It’s not pleasant to think about for very long.

A lot of that trash may be in the water in which you are trying to get refreshed. It’s a hot day. You need to cool off. The ocean is right there, only a few steps from where you’ve been cooking on the beach reading a book about ocean pollution. While you were reading, a horsefly wouldn’t leave you alone. Planting itself on your shoulder, you felt the sting. You slapped at it with intent to kill. It got away. It won. You lost. Losing puts you in a bad mood.

A minute later it came back. This time it stood on your shin stinging you again. You slapped in vain knowing you didn’t have a chance. It got away. Horseflies always get away and always come back. This is why you hate them.

To avoid getting a sunburn, which would also sting, you spread suntan lotion all over your body except one area. You know what I mean. Your eye itches. You rub it. The itch goes away. But lotion gets in your eye. This is when you realize you didn’t wipe off the lotion thoroughly enough after spreading it on your body. Your eye stings. It get watery. You are crying. No matter how much you rub you can’t get the burning sensation to stop.

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Desperate, you go to the ocean to rinse your eye in water. Your eye burns so much you don’t care if it’s dirty water. You dive in and dunk your head. Your face hits the underbelly of a glassy-colored jellyfish the size of a basketball. You grab your face. The slime stung you on your nose, chin, mouth, and forehead. These body parts sting as if a knife cut them. Your eye still stings.

You are a mess.

The beach conquered you. The ocean guzzled you whole. The horsefly bit you and is still alive to bite you again. And it will.

There is no wind to cool down the blazing hot sun. This is the way the wind blows.

This is why the beach blows.

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