AuthorTopic: Bored on the Fourth of July  (Read 447 times)

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Bored on the Fourth of July
« on: July 04, 2016, 02:47:41 AM »


gc2smFrom the keyboard of Thomas Lewis



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Published on the Daily Impact on July 1, 2016



https://faithspear.files.wordpress.com/2016/06/independence-day-image-c.jpg



Discuss this article at the Environment Table inside the Diner



beach closed “Hi, Twits and Likees and BFFs. Can’t find the right emoticon for our family’s bummer of a long weekend. As you know, because we’ve been posting about it all year, we planned the trip of a lifetime to Florida’s Treasure Coast beaches over the 4th. But when we got there the beaches were covered with a green, toxic, smelly curd that some genius compared to guacamole but I never saw an avocado tree anywhere so that doesn’t make any sense.



“They said it was algae, washed out of Lake Okeechobee, which apparently has been turned into like a yuge septic tank with a 35-square-mile algae mat that is getting more and more toxic and now heavy rains have like flushed it south to the ocean. And the gunk is all over the beaches of four counties. It’s not just that you shouldn’t swim in the water, you shouldn’t touch it. The governor, Rick Scott, has declared states of emergency and says it’s Obama’s fault.



“Well, here we were, and it’s Florida, right, so we headed over the the Panhandle for some abbreviated Fun in the Sun. And eight beaches in the Florida Panhandle were closed because of elevated toxic fecal bacteria readings. Yeah, I didn’t know what that was either until a guy explained it to me. “The shit,” he said, “has hit the sand.”



We kept going west, looking for a place to get in the water, but Sea lice infestations have purple warning flags up at South Walton and Santa Rosa Beaches in the Florida Panhandle,  and they are moving west towards Alabama. They’re not really lice, it turns out, but the stinging larvae of stinging jellyfish, and they turn your skin into a reenactment of a California wildfire. So we kept going.



Half of the beaches tested in Louisiana were posted, as were 15 beaches in Texas, mostly around Galveston. The Chambers of Commerce were relentless in insisting that everything was okay. Galveston officials, for example, insisted that their beaches were not “closed.” They were simply labelled as places where, if you went in the water, you should expect to experience nausea, rashes, asphyxia, bleeding and death. The good news trumpeted by several tourist organizations was that although their waters were teeming with dangerous bacteria, flesh-eating bacteria did not appear to be among them. Or brain-eating bacteria. That was the good news.



We were getting pretty desperate now, with the long weekend mostly gone. A check of the Internet showed beaches posted in New York, New Jersey, all along the coast. At Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, officials have erected permanent signs — they’ve been up since 2007 — advising against swimming because of frequent, dangerously high bacteria levels.



Se we gave up, and decided to go home and spend a few hours hanging out around our hot tub.



What? Get in it? Are you crazy? We live in Flint, Michigan.



Anyways. Happy Birthday, America. Is this a great country? Or what.



 

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