The Ten Commandments for Summer Renters at the Jersey Shore
"And Bruce Springsteen said unto The Situation, come up to me at the boardwalk and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written, that thou mayest teach them to the rest of the bennies." -Exodus 24:12,13
With the arrival of another Memorial Day Weekend, Jersey Shore locals can look forward to the arrival of our noisy neighbors from the north and west.
Whether they're from Bayonne, Elizabeth, Newark or New York, the bennies are sure to be out in force this summer, drinking beers and pumping fists.
Far be it for us to deny anyone a good time. While I doubt any renters will be bringing a golden calf with to their summer shares, we still need to lay down some ground rules.
I. Thou shalt show some respect for families on the beach.
Sifting through the foggy memories of the previous night is a favorite pastime of bennies on the beach, but keep the sordid details to yourself. The beach is a family-friendly zone and we aim to keep it that way.
II. Thou shalt not urinate in public.
Here's an easy one. Go to the bathroom before you leave the bar. If you can't hold it on the walk home, then run. A dead, brown patch on their lawn is an annoying reminder of how stupid the kids who rent up the street are for a year-round resident.
III. Thou shalt not litter in the streets.
Plastic cups, cans, bottles and all other sorts of refuse belong in their respective bins, not the street. Period. Don't do it. Better yet, don't leave your house or the bar with alcoholic drink in the first place!
IV. Thou shalt not destroy thy neighbor's house or property.
You know how when you're out at the club and you see some girl you used to get with grinding with some other dude? Doesn't it make you want to go outside and break something? Yeah, don't do that. Don't kick over someone's fence or key their car. You'll meet someone else. It's the Jersey Shore, right?
V. Thou shalt not steal.
OK we borrowed this one from the real Ten Commandments, but it applies here. Whether it's a lawn ornament or someone's bike, if you didn't pay for it don't touch it. You wouldn't like it if someone took your hair gel or body spray without asking, would you?
VI. Thou shalt keep indoor furniture inside.
So you and 15 of your closest friends split the rent on a two-bedroom saltbox shack on the beach. Now it's July and the window air conditioner inside the place hasn't run since 1992. Just drag the couch outside, right? No. That's gross and I'm sure your landlord won't appreciate it.
VII. Thou Shalt not fight.
Listen, Rocky Balboa... There are very, VERY few instances that call for a person to raise their hands in combat against another and 99 out of 100 fights that happen between drunken goons at the Jersey Shore probably don't qualify. Relax and walk away. You spent all your money on overpriced drinks, you can't afford bail.
VIII. Thou shalt shut up in the middle of the night.
Regardless of how great a night you might have had, understand that the entire town doesn't need to hear all about it as you stumble your way back to your bare mattress on the floor of a dumpy cottage. Keep it down. Some of us have to work in the morning.
IX. Thou shalt not drive like an idiot.
We're sure that the latest remix by DJ Whatshisface is going to prove life-changing for your buddies in the car with you, but wait until you're stop to change the CD. Don't roll through stop signs and always yield to pedestrians. Stay right except to pass on the Parkway and I'm sure we'll be fine. Tinted windows and a loud muffler don't turn your sedan into a Formula One car. Don't act like it.
X. Thou shalt observeth trash day.
We know, We know. Trash day is on Tuesday and you spend Monday through Friday living in your mom's house and selling pagers at a stand in the Willowbrook Mall, but letting your empty pizza boxes and recycling bins full of beer bottles pile up on the side of your house is not an acceptable solution. Drop your trash off at the borough yard. Make arrangements with your landlord. Don't create a fire hazard.