Wednesday, July 7, 2010

East Coast Dispatch--the Epilogue

Every summer sees the whirlwind HHG East Coast tour of New England states, Cape Cod beaches, grandparents, old friends, humidity, mosquitoes, ice cream, irrational liquor sales laws, and air conditioning. In the spirit of sharing, this trip’s lack of surfables has given me a moment to create a coastal New England socio-linguistic primer for those lucky enough to be planning a visit. Anchors away!
1. Appearance. The typical vacationing New Englander dresses blissfully free of irony. We knew we’d be seeing a lot of khaki during our visit, but the variety and sheer volume is what impresses us most. Green khakis. Yellow khakis. Khakis with embroidered whales, khaki skirts, hats, and an unconfirmed sighting (by Mrs. HHG) of a khaki beach blanket.
Below, my father demonstrates the typical accoutrement. Every summer he reaches deep into the suitcase, pulls out this getup, and sports it proudly for the duration of our stay. “When in Rome,” he says when asked about it, grinning. I’m pretty sure my mom makes sure it doesn’t see the light of day for the next eleven months. Let me talk you through it:
Faded Nantucket Red hat, crisp solid-colored polo shirt, well-worn khakis suspended by a sportfish-embroidered belt. Classic. What you don’t see: Boatshoes. No socks. Does it get any better?
2. Language. Often mocked, broadly misunderstood, seldom appreciated. The geography of New England is distinctly variegated—hills, valleys, rivers, snow piles, forests. It leads to not one, but hundreds of regional accents. A typical coastal New England observation about swimming conditions can offer endless variation. If the speaker is visiting from Boston, it may sound like, “This wahtah’s wickitt whumm,” whereas a Long Islander may posit, “Hey, this shit’s freakin’ hwaht,” while a Marylander might speculate , “they got crabs in this wutter, huh-wun?”
Each variation presents a host of invaluable anthroplogical data.
3. Fishing. It’s solid. As per tradition, 10th generation Cape Cod waterman Capt. Kenny Eldredge got Team HHG into some bluefish and striped bass (stripahs). Also as per tradition, Mrs. HHG spanked everone else on the boat, going as far as pulling up two fish at once—a bass and a blue on the same rig. Who said we can’t all get along?
This is what happens to good stripers from Nantucket Sound.
Stoked to get back to the left coast in a few days and crack into a fresh stack of foam!


Dillybean said...

Which one of the 3 stripah treatments tasted the best? I suspect it was the middle one...

HeadHighGlassy said...

Nope! All the way to the left. Bro-in-law's Secret Crust Recipe #1 is the goods.

markmosk said...

"Doesn't see the light of day for the next 11 months."


PS: I'd have liked the lemon only. Keep in super simple.

HeadHighGlassy said...

Ok, it's tolerated until Labor Day, but THAT'S IT!
As for simple fish, I couldn't agree more. I like it grilled with the head still on...