Phenomenal Pompous Promenade

by DB Pedlar

One thing we've learned, be careful what we ask DB to write - here's what we emailed him when he asked what we wanted for a commentary:
"Okay, how about the new Star Wars movie craze, Julia Roberts in way too many movies, or women who shouldn't wear bathing suits at the beach (or men for that matter)."
Well, we got what we asked for, and we think you'll enjoy it!

Holidays past, present and future always make me shudder especially when accompanied by a pompous show commonly known as a parade. Traffic is tied up because streets are blocked off so old men can ogle and drool over women in tight-fitting costumes showing a lot of leg and cleavage. Why not just organize an outing to the beach?

Oh sure, parade organizers can get away without seeming sexist because they include a car dealership to advertise the latest model in cars; they use an old soldier propped up in the back seat who thinks he just liberated the town from the enemy; a newly crowned queen-of-something who sits atop a convertible breaking seat belt laws; people riding on floats who break the litter law by tossing useless junk at the crowd; clowns who will later be acting even sillier after all the alcohol they imbibe; and, of course, the marching bands playing the latest showtunes or dried-up marches. I could go on and on, but you get the picture.

The phrase or the song lyric is false - not everyone loves a parade.

Imagine the surprise when the route I selected along the beach for the days outing was blocked off.

A quick check of the calendar did not indicate an obscure holiday and an excuse to host a parade, or even a holiday sponsored by the whores of Madison Avenue. Why were these people lined up?

The line went on forever and continued to form as more people joined it. Some were fortunate - they brought along their beach chairs, grills and ice chests.

Was this some sort of attempt to make or break a record for the longest line dance? What were people doing at the beach dressed in what appeared to be some sort of Star Wars costume?

Iíd heard rumors of country music becoming popular again, but since when did Star Wars make use of a country soundtrack? And what were Julia Roberts look-alikes doing in this line? Was this a preview of the latest swimwear?

I havenít been to the movie theater or the beach in a long time so I thought I would meander over to see what was up.

I learned the line started forming days in advance of ticket sales to watch a prequel of Star Wars. I wasnít too popular with the crowd when I told the avid Star Wars fans that George Lucas had no choice but to make this an early beginning of Star Wars to separate them from more of their money. If he were to continue the events in order, then the Force would be with Skywalker, Solo and the Princess in a nursing home.

Iíve heard rumors the staff at some of these nursing homes can be very "force"ful. The movie tie-in products and toys would be walkers and the costume of the day would be Depends, which would probably cut down on film merchandising.

I also think I lost them when I suggested they could find a way to be productive while wasting precious hours/days standing in line. I told them they could be patching pot holes in the street, repairing cracked sidewalks, painting and giving a facelift to the areas they pass on their trek to the theater.

I wonder if it was the use of the word *trek* that made a few refer to me as being from the dark side?

However, I won them back when I passed along the word this was not a call for Julia Roberts body doubles or stand-ins for yet another of her movies. Mention the word movie casting and all the Roberts body doubles show up en masse. The line thinned considerably after that and the Star Wars fans were another mile closer to the movie theater.

However, this left me with a view I would have rather done without. I could see the beach and the anti-opposite of the Star Wars people, the Sun Worshippers.

The sound of waves slapping against the shoreline, the flap of seagull wings, and the lifeguardís whistle was not enough to distract me from the mounds and mounds of large, round, pale and dark flesh sticking up off patches of blankets spread out on the sand.

Snaps off pop (soda) cans, twirls of plastic caps from plastic bottles and tubes of sun block number 65 replaced the serene sound of a lakeside setting.

The smell of burning flesh and meat can cause the olfactory senses to work overtime. The combination of sweat, oils, sun blocks, wet swimwear, discarded shoes and socks, and burnt dead animals is enough to make any nose revolt.

Rivulets of sweat rushing in and out of folded fat or dropping off skinny frames to soak the sand where the beachgoers established squatters rights is not a pretty sight.

How do these people fit into the swimwear they choose? Do they imagine themselves looking good? Every sight imaginable is available - from breasts spilling out to butt cracks; tight-fitting to loose fitting swimwear in flashy bright colors that draw attention to the personís less-than-attractive physical attributes.

Of course, there are the hard-bodies who wear swimwear to show off every line, curve, and more - which leaves nothing to the imagination.

I could go on but I am getting nauseated and envious.

There is a simple solution that would cut down the number of parades and unsightly beachwear while employing the farm team of Julia Roberts body doubles: A kit consisting of a pan of sand to place at the feet while watching a videotape parade of Julia Roberts body doubles dressed in various designs of swimwear with an environmental soundtrack, as played by a marching band.

As for the Star Wars fans, they're in a force field all their own.

DB Pedlar is the editor of a paper zine called