As a little girl, my parents took me to the beach at least once a week. The summers were spent at John U. Lloyd Beach State Park way before all the non-native shade trees were victims of hurricanes. Our favorite thing to do was spend the entire day at the beach until the park rangers kicked us out just around 8 pm. We would enjoy picnics of pan con bistec (steak on Laurenzo's French bread), Pringles, Coca Cola and Budweiser for Mama y Papa. When not in the water on floats, dama chinas (chinese checkers), books, my Walkman, collecting seashells and snoozing were entertainment.
The days it was too cold we go to Howard Johnson's and eat ice cream while on the Hollywood Boardwalk. Mama would insist that I "BREATHE" in the salt air. Of course, for me, being at the beach was ultimate happiness, so I would BREATHE to make sure of another trip another evening.
We would get home, unload the car, and go into our back yard by the side gate. Everything would get hosed, from beach toys to flip flops that never went into the house. We would check our body parts for tar, and rub and pic at the black blotches with mineral spirits and a rag just for that purpose. The brown tar stain would fade while our tans got darker (thanks to Mama, who always kept us in sunblock). If you got some petrolio on your swimsuit, well, trash it especially if it was on your rump (LOL).
The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico makes me sick. What did the company not do to prevent this accident? THREE valves cannot close? What? God forbid three valves stayed stuck open at a nuclear power plant, even on a system that is NOT safety related. All heck breaks loose when a door stays open too long at a nuclear plant! The nuclear industry is so tight that the rules are strict, followed, regulated, and if not the plant is shut down. Guess the oil companies don't have to be that strict. Well, somehow, this oil leak is just as horrific as a radiation leak in terms of impact to the environment, people, animals, the world's economy, etc. Only difference between oil and radiation is that most humans will live through this catastrophe. Oil companies, etc. keep insisting oil is the way to the future. Sadly, we are all hostage with just the goods we use daily to oil.
Update for 2021:
Laurenzo’s closed in 2019.
The oil has mostly dissipated from the Gulf of Mexico, according to environmental groups.
The USA is still heavily dependent on oil and gas.
The nuclear industry in the USA keeps struggling to run one of the best resources of electricity.
This piece is still available, but please email me at angeline @angelinemarie.net because it’s not on my website..
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