The Mermaid Day Parade. It could be like the word you know in your native tongue but has no translation. It could be the sixth sense. Nonsense. It might be something "you have to be there for." A joke. In all seriousness. Maybe you have to be from Brooklyn to understand it. Or from nyc. Or have grown up eating it to be able to make it, to describe it, to imbibe or digest it. Maybe it's something in the water. Like a bagel that won't be a bagel made with California water. Or maybe it's an acquired taste. Like black salty licorice or raw artichokes or sea urchin.
The Mermaid Day Parade. Like a tattoo, addictive. Permanent. Sexy. Wild. Tame & Silly. Underground. Amphibious. Insane. Wacky, like a "nut-job," a "head-case," a " what the fuck were you thinking?"
The Mermaid Day Parade. Hot, sticky, bad junk food, steamy steam table corn-on-the-cob, beer, splinters from the boardwalk, sunburn, toplessness, glittery bodies, leather and spandex and rubber and body paint, primary color dyed hair,
queerness, machismo, drugs, money, sex, violence, pay-by-the-hour-motels, cotton candy, red candy apples, litter, broken glass, hip hop at the loudest decibel, salsa and meringue in the afternoon, boom boxes, crass men and slutty women, bikinied pregnant girls, fags, Guido's, spics, kikes, dykes, dogs, snakes, parrots, bare-feet, hipsters, trans-fags, fatgirls, Russian princesses, spoiled brats, hairy legs and armpits, face-lifts and fake tits, fried clams, greasy french fries, The Polar Bears, Bridge & Tunnelers,
con-men, prostitutes, single mothers, absent fathers, dirty sand, dirtier water, cigarette smoke mixed with staid salty air, tar sticky logs, volleyball nets, tiaras, fake eyelashes, tight shirts, matching outfits, cornrows, crewcuts, pierced and jewelryless.
The Mermaid Day Parade is everyone and every fetish and everything. It's babies in swimsuits and boys in tutus and marching bands, real or imagined. It's political and apathetic, in your face and subtle.
But most of all, The Mermaid Day Parade is just that. A parade of all things above and below the salty waters from any shore on every continent. Mermaids and crustaceans, fish and whale, crab and lobster, shark and pirate, sailors and sirens.
But come with an open mind. Sunscreen. Hungry, and thirsty. Be ready to get dirty or see dirty. Prepare for loud and crowded, colorful and abrasive, alluring and seductive, historical and gentrified.
I got it into my head that I would make it this year. And I did. Sometimes if we try really hard, dreams can come true.