“Great for Entertaining”

“Great for Entertaining”

Hasn’t this country gotten tired of giving people makeovers yet?

Between making people look “good” (and by good I mean trendy) and singing contests, the United States of America is becoming one big outlet mall with nightly cabaret dinner shows.

Perhaps restaurants and salons should start teaming up for full “days of indulgence.”

Follow me here, but let me start by saying that this idea, though along the same lines of “two birds with one stone” marketing, makes the “Free Cruise with Dinner” as outdated as the vessel itself.

First, they would spend the day at the spa/salon and get the standard makeover. Then, they are whisked off to the restaurant for booze drinks and apps and finally dropped off at the gym where they can work off all of the indulgence and continue to fit into the clothes that they were given in the earlier makeover. Then perhaps, they can head down and get into a singing competition at a local karaoke joint and sing “Fergi-licious” and show off their newly styled “milkshakes to all the boys in the yard.”

It would be about as long as a day of golf is for the gents.

So, you have the salon, the wardrobe folks, the restaurant, and the gym all taking a slice of simply making people feel better about themselves. It’s an amazing industry if you think about it.

It’s like giving compliments and getting paid for it. Except instead of just telling someone that their have a nice looking backside, you give them a pair of trendy new trousers (that retail for $49.99) that make their backside look good and you tape the entire process to show how you can make anyone look good if given enough of a credit limit or enough eye shadow.

I call it the “fabulous industry.” It is hysterical how a country that is so unbelievably homophobic and unnerved by the idea of two dudes or two chicks marrying each other can be so enamored by the folks in the “fabulous industry.”

The “fabulous industry” doesn’t just make people look good (and by good I mean trendy), they makeover houses as well. There is a little channel called HGTV that has been on my television for the past three months straight. As we are moving into a new house, my wife has been watching this channel with the vigilance of a nightwatchman as if an idea might be shown that might make our dream house become the dream house for everybody that we come in contact with.

The whole channel is basically going into someone’s home demolishing parts of it, and then redoing it with some sort of Fung Shui minimalism and colors that make a room do something they call “pop”, which oddly enough look like varying colors that you would see in somebody’s smoke room in the 1970’s.

Which is why I giggle slightly when they say their favorite line when the room is complete: “The room is now perfect for entertaining.” (So that’s what they are calling it now.)

It seems sometimes that they do some really nice things to really crappy places, which even if they did put a $60,000 kitchen into the house, the house is still crappy and in a crappy part of town. So my question is: are we so obsessed with decorating our personal cubicles or our castles that we put a blind eye to the quality of the nest itself?

Another thing that bewilders me is why, especially in this area, there are really old historic homes that were actually made with some craftsmanship that sit vacant while they can’t stop putting up houses that are about as durable and well done as a dresser from IKEA, and people actually buy houses that are not only overpriced, but built with “cut any corner to beat the deadline” style of craftsmanship.

Why do we consider something to be good or better just because it is new?

Think about that and in this context, if you remove the all important “location, location, location,” there are some places that if lined up next to each other are not only structurally inferior but close to downright unsound.

Look around for yourself.

It’s remarkable to me how much people love makeovers. They are a shallower version of a “rags to riches” story. More than likely however, a week after the show airs, the person that was made over will start to morph back into their pre-makeover selves since they were given one outfit and probably have no idea how to make their hair look that good all the time. It’s all just a big old song and dance that was never supposed to last.

Which is my entire point in all of this.

Nothing is supposed to last anymore. We create things that are essentially supposed to fail so we have to get more stuff. Quantity reigns over quality.

The recently approved room tax hike that the OC Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association obtained was proposed to help get some more advertising dollars to promote our town to the apparent declining tourism market. Which I think is all well and good, but here are a few things that I think you should do if you are actually going to charge the fewer people that are here more than what they are paying now.

— Before you build any new structure, fix the existing structures that are currently in place (ie..most of the downtown).

–Require rental properties be kept to a much higher standard from cleanliness to general maintenance before each season.

Maybe before we add to the town or try to promote it in new and different ways, perhaps we need to look at the overall allure of it or just simply take a really good look at it. The beach is one thing and the bay is has a great view. Most of the time however, people are spending more time driving past the rundown slums of the downtown area or sitting on the bridges in traffic.

If they sit in traffic for 10 hours and then sleep in a crappy room, do you blame them for not coming back?

Maybe this town needs a makeover.

Why shouldn’t we get a bunch of happy little interior designers come down and change some things so we can feel better about ourselves?

Look at it this way: fixing Ocean City up would make it “great for entertaining.”

Isn’t that the whole point of this town’s existence anyway?

Email me at [email protected].