Wednesday, July 27, 2005

The Sun, The Fun, The Toxicity

I'm very excited--if a little nervous--about my foray to the beach this weekend. You see I haven't been to a beach in the New York City vicinity in ah, oooh, NEVER. Well, in college some friends and I went to Amagansett in the off-season, but that was more about drinking and debauching than... okay, so maybe it's not so different. But this is my first summertime adventure to sandy shores, and I'm not quite sure how the chattering class is supposed to comport itself.

Sure, I've read reports. I know that owning and crushing folks with one's Mercedes SUV is de rigeur. From what I understand, dressing like a bohemian is very big this summer. (Though why this concept makes me throw up in my mouth a little, I can't quite say.) And I know that lamé is the new tourquoise is the new orange is the new black.

But the nuances of beach behavior still eludes me and anyone who has witnessed my paleness first hand can certify that I'm a stranger to the sun. So first and foremost fearing that I'll look like this by the end of the weekend, I've started doing some research. As it seems, I'm not alone in my confusion re: tanning. For instance apparently this young buck also had some suntanning related questions. So you know what he did? He went and Asked Alice (
Dear Alice,

Do men need to cover up their testicles when using indoor tanning facilities?

I use tanning booths regularly and I normally use only eye protection. I am slightly worried, however, that the UV radiation from the sunlamps could do internal damage to a man's testicles, because the skin is obviously only very thin and might not offer much protection against UV radiation. Since eyelids are similarly thin and it is known that eye damage can result even when using tanning equipment with closed eyes, I wonder if advice should be given to men to use similar precautions to prevent testicles being exposed to high-intensity UV-A or UV-B radiation. I have looked everywhere for scientific information on this matter but could not find anything. Your advice on this matter would therefore be very much appreciated.

(I'd thought about shortening the question with ellipses, but I just liked the whole thing so damn much...)

Alice responds very cleverly, complimenting the man on wanting to protect his "beach bags" and agreeing that he wouldn't want to have "great balls of fire," but she stops short of telling him to include sunscreen application in foreplay. But, since I'll actually be headed to Fire Island, now that I'm armed with all this knowledge, no doubt I'll be a welcome house guest and have lots to discuss with the boys (and their boys.) Surf's up!


Blogger The Noon said...

Fire Island? Gorgeous place, a friend proposed to me there! Some day I'll tell you the whole story. On the ferry, on the way in, if you sit too close to the edge you may get drenched. An influential Princeton couple has a house there, e-mail off-list if you'd like details:

July 27, 2005 12:42 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

Hey, I actually tried to email you a few days ago, but I'm wondering if I got caught in your spam filter? Sadly this wouldn't be the first time I've been labeled spam... anyway, I'm off soon, but thanks for the offer of details -- Maybe next time!

July 29, 2005 9:09 AM  
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