Whenever Samuel L. Jackson is like, “What’s in your wallet?” I’m like, I don’t know Snakes On a Plane Guy, maybe five dollars? My credit card if I haven’t lost it? An unwrapped piece of gum stuck to a dime and a business card for a Turkish Bathhouse that I found in a cab? It’s not really any of his business and yet he feels compelled to ask so publicly — TV is kind of a huge billboard for Jackson to make sure I didn’t forget my ID.
The better question would be: what’s in your beach bag? That’s where I keep the good stuff. Wallets are for important receipts that you’ll lose anyway, and work bags are for gym clothes. Beach bags, however…beach bags are for portable parties. That and lemonade.
I like to begin by stocking my beach bag with the more practical hoo ha. You got your towels — make sure to choose one big enough to share with that friend who always forgets hers; sunscreen — a thick one for the body because lobster boobs are not cute, a lightweight one for the face because #rudolf is a hashtag wherein we’re laughing at you, not with you; a hat (floppy for the chic-mom look, baseball for the swing-batta-batta look), and a scarf. Why a scarf? Because anytime the opportunity arises for semi-superfluous accessories that appear casual and actually can offer a bit of practicality if you’re smart enough — sarong! papoose! a tree shimmy! — I say, sign me up.
Now let’s get on to the real shit: sunglasses, flip flops (don’t be the d-bag with complicated shoes on the sand), a book, and a roadie. A roadie is a packable & portable drink-drink a la senior prom. But because I’m older and wiser I like a stainless steel bottle that keeps my John Dalys cold for 12 hours even though they’re gone in one. By John Dalys I mean the drink involving vodka, iced tea and lemonade. Not John Daly the person — although, fun fact, you can buy a copy of his Hancocked Sports Illustrated issue from 1995 right here. You’re either welcome or I’m sorry.
Last but not least, in addition to surf spray, aloe vera and this melting popsicle iPhone case that serves zero purpose save for the fact that it’s adorable and visually delicious, I always like to carry a gigantic white quill in my beach bag. That’s right. A quill, because not only do I like to give out my phone number the really old fashioned way (i.e., with a bird’s feather and calligraphed signature), it helps keep the seagulls away. They take one look at that thing and know you’re not messing around with that No Food Sharing Policy.
Am I drunk from the sun as I write this? Perhaps. Maybe it’s all the John Dalys. Either way, I really just need you to tell me: what’s in your beach bag? (And kindly read that question in the voice of one Samuel L. Jackson.)