The Best Beach Reads for When You Left Your Book at Home
“Cell Phone, Volume I,” by Tech Giant
What’s a tweet, anyway, if not a short story? And you downloaded the Kindle app back when you left your book at home before that eight-hour flight on which you ended up watching all four films in the “Kung Fu Panda” franchise. Don’t forget all the articles you’ve been meaning to check out once you finish the Thursday crossword puzzle from six weeks ago. See? There’s plenty of reading to be done on this marvel of modern technology in the moment you have before the sun’s glare blinds you.
“S.P.F. 100+,” by R.X. Sunblock
You don’t need to be a sci-fi fan to find yourself deeply invested in the adventures of oxybenzone, octocrylene, and avobenzone, but you do need to be incredibly desperate. At least you won’t be splotchy and peeling the next time someone at a fancy cocktail party asks you what you’ve been reading in a tone that, in retrospect, was definitely condescending.
“Sot Oaf Matisse Ate Berry Boy?,” by Bad Skywriter
A mystery so mind-melting that even Sherlock Holmes would have struggled to realize what was in front of you all along—not only is the Fauvist artist innocent of any cannibal crimes, there is no Berry Boy! In fact, the message written in the sky is supposed to say (SPOILER ALERT) “50% OFF MATTRESSES AT BEDDY BUY.” Who could’ve seen that one coming? Certainly not whoever’s in charge of marketing over at what is soon to become another empty storefront in the local strip mall.
“Cell Phone, Volume II,” by Tech Giant
The glare is still bad, but worse are the multiple e-mails you’ve received from your boss even though you told him you were taking today off and, oh, great, now your eyeballs hurt worse than the sunburned arm you applied the prescription sunblock with but forgot to put any onto.
“The Girl with the Dr. Phil Tattoo,” by Unlicensed Parlor
This horrific tale makes Mary Shelley look like Shel Silverstein, and makes Dr. Phil look like the guy on the Pringles can. The only mercy is its simplicity. Unless, of course, the author hid additional meaning in “Docta Fill 4 EVA.” Perhaps you can ask her about any deeper significance when she returns from “taking a whiz” in the shallows.
“The Seagull,” by Anton Chekhov
Considered one of the legendary Russian dramatist’s greatest works, “The Seagull” is a play that someone appears to have left on the beach. There it is, yours for the taking. One of the greatest plays ever written has made its way to you like some sort of message in a bottle sent by a benevolent force. Oh, the serendipity! Your boredom has been banished like “The Girl with the Dr. Phil Tattoo” girl, after she flashed the lifeguard her Judge Judy ink.
“Cell Phone, Volume III,” by Tech Giant
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According to Google Maps, if you leave now, you can get home in time for “Wheel of Fortune.”