For a pasty-white guy who lives in the Sunshine State, I don’t spend nearly enough time at the beach these days.

I mean, I’ve got all the right excuses – my pale, almost ghost-like complexion that sitting in front of a computer 23 hours a day creates could certainly use the sun; it’s great exercise bobbing around out in those waves, dodging sharks and stingrays and whatnot; and I’m sure that even our new puppy would love a day of running around on the sand, trying to catch frisbees that are three times the size of her  … just as long as she didn’t have to go anywhere near the actual water, that is…

Also, one other thing – it’s the beach! Who needs an “excuse” to go kick back and relax on the beach all day?!

I’m sure that plenty of people in landlocked states would love the chance on any given day to be able to just walk along the white, sandy beaches and take a rejuvenating dip in the bathwater-temperatures of the Gulf of Mexico on a random whim, as opposed to a frigid splash in some of those lakes up north that are frozen over half the year and lucky to be pushing 55 degrees in the summertime!  I remember those frigid waters all too well because I went SCUBA diving in them many, many times when I lived there, and all I’ve got to say is that as far as I’m concerned, the only ice cubes that I ever want to encounter at the beach had better be in my glass, not floating alongside me in the water!

But just like how when you live in Seattle, you’re expected to be a rugged mountain man who can hike twelve miles up the side of a cliff and sustain yourself on nuts and berries for weeks, or how when you live in Vegas you owe it to the rest of the world to be partying hardcore 365 days a year like those guys in The Hangover, despite how absolutely horrible I thought that movie actually was, I suppose you could say that likewise those of us here in the Sunshine State really have an obligation to our wooly, bundled-up brethren of the north, some of whom really only ever see warm weather on television or read about it in picture books, to really get out there and enjoy basking in this beautiful, sunny weather, with all of the beaches and bikinis and ridiculously warm water that it has to offer just as much as humanly possible!

So I guess it’s time that I started living up to the eternally laid-back, impeccably tanned standards that us Floridians have been saddled with by living here smack dab in the middle of this subtropical paradise of ours.  Sure, it may be tough to justify spending countless hours of each day doing nothing but soaking up the sun and lounging around with our toes in the sand all summer, but just as those in New York City must embrace being pretentious and drinking martinis at four in the morning in their city that never sleeps, this waterfront wonderland is our burden to bear, beach volleyball tournaments and all.

Besides, better enjoy it while we can – in a few months that water is going to get back down to 70 degrees again … what kind of uncivilized polar bear would swim in water like that?!