2014-03-21 / Columnists

Slice of Life

#onlyinrockaway
By Beth Hanning

This past weekend I attended a wedding. I was sitting at table 14 and I was looking for my sister-in-law who, when I found her, I asked what table number she was. She responded: table 43. This may seem odd to some people, but not me. I have attended many weddings with over 500 people in attendance. The thing that is hilarious is when you see people at the end of the night at the coat check and you both look at each other and say, “You were here all night?” If I did not seek out a close friend who I knew was invited I probably would not have had a chance to see her. I often sit at events like this and say: “Only in Rockaway.”

For years, I just thought that what went on in our little community went on everywhere. It was not until I moved to the Midwest and invited people to my home or told tales from our oceanfront town that I started to realize we are quite original. I would bet a large amount of money that no one in my old town of Terre Haute has ever attended a 500 person wedding.

Here are just a few things I would wager people outside of the Rock have never seen. 1. This past Sunday a young boy (his name will be withheld because I did not get a chance to ask the parents) was walking west on Newport

Avenue. He was holding a skateboard, not riding it and walking barefoot.

BAREFOOT. No socks, no shoes, no flip-flops, no slippers, NOTHING.

When I asked him where his shoes were he responded by telling me he was only going around the corner to his friend’s house. Oh, of course, no shoes are required when walking around the corner in March on a 40- degree day. I just stood there and watched him turn the corner. #onlyinrockaway 2. Weekdays on the beach. A few years ago my husband had a “small” birthday beach party when I turned 40. He sent out a text that whoever was off should come to the beach and we would celebrate. About 70 people showed for the weekday festivities.

Our friend from the Bronx asked,

“Does anyone in this town work?” PS:

Not everyone there was a teacher.

#onlyinrockaway 3. The mustache bash. Now there is an urban legend that the origin of the mustache bash is from a Chicago fundraiser. Now, do they have anywhere between 300-400 mustache wearing men riding bicycles through the neighborhood carrying American flags and signing God Bless America in each stop on their tour? I think not.

It goes without saying and I have written about it before, there is no other town that comes together when one of its own is in need. Even the disaster relief organization, Rubicon that travels around the globe said so.

Now look forward to more episodes of #onlyinrockaway. If you are a new resident let me know what you have seen here that you have never seen before, or if you are a former resident what do you miss that happens only here in the Rockaways.

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