The summer sun makes it hard to think, but that’s the point. You don’t stretch out in those glorious feel-good rays to work out solutions to all of life’s problems, because stretching out is the solution. At least for a while. We get all too few hours of doing nothing in this life, which is why you might as well use some thinking time to make the most of them.
We’ve searched the net to bring the best in brilliant beach gear, and a few toys which turn a pool party into something even funner than a pool party – a feat previously thought impossible by funologists, and they’ve been celebrating ever since. Then again, that’s kind of their job. But that’s the brilliant bit. When you’re at the beach, it’s everyone’s job!
So kick off those shoes, leap into the water, and feel the sheer joy of being the only species to both invent clothes and then invent excuses for not wearing them. To the beach!
1. Mobile Hammock
Throughout history sailors might have lacked education, teeth, and any kind of certainty that they wouldn’t drown, but that was all to average out the sheer pleasure of their hammocks. If you haven’t hammocked, why, you’ve barely slept in the shade at all. Expert relaxers know that a cool drink and a swinging mesh are all you need for levels of pleasure unheard of in any other recliner. You feel good all through your spine, not just because your body is reporting that the warmth and swaying make it more relaxed than it’s ever been since that whole “birth” thing, but because the spine itself unstresses. And now you can have one anywhere!
The mobile hammock unfolds from an easy carry-case without tools, screws or any kind of losable bolt. Even the pillow is attached to the hammock and inflatable to ensure everything you need for happiness is always with you. Perfect for the beach, brilliant for camping, and — unlike most holiday supplies — it works just as well at home. Set it up in front of the TV and you might never sit in a sofa again.
2. One Way Sand Mat
If there were a Nobel Prize for Beach Technology, CGear would win it. And we wouldn’t need a prize for peace because everyone would have already stopped fighting. CGear brilliantly adapted their primary product, military tactical helimats, to the civilian sector when they noticed their new fabric was a one-way gate for sand.
Throw this down on the beach and you need never be covered in sand again! The fine particles falling on the mat are allowed to pass through, but can’t get back up, making this the ideal picnic surface or bedding sheet for camping on the beach. The mat doesn’t work so well when the beach is wet, but then, nothing much designed for beach holidays works when it gets wet. And we salute CGear for leaving behind little things like “armed aerial combat” to tackle the real problems!
If you are or know a swimmer, you just found the perfect present. Assuming you or they deserve one. The waterproof SwiMP3 uses bone conduction to transmit music directly into your skull without earbuds. Which would be a sucking, water-filled balance-ruining nightmare in the water. The SwiMP3 attaches easily to goggle straps meaning you can accelerate your stroke with some techno, become the very image of relaxation with classical, or even educate yourself while exercising with audiobooks.
4. Bottle Opening Flip-flops
Become the hero of the beach without Charles Atlas, sand in your face, or having to beat anyone up! The perfect podiatric tool, Reef’s Fanning flip-flops are the world’s first unarguably effective form of reflexology — because they can solve any problem you have through your feet.
The deeply-recessed bottle opener avoids any hygiene concerns: you’d need a bucket and spade to get any sand in there, and a quick pound will shake it off the rest of the shoe to relax anyone who’s on the beach and about to have a beer but still worrying. The contortionists in college could probably open a bottle without taking it off, but the rest of us can easily slip off the flip-flop and open a bottle. And thanks to the air-inflated padding (the reason it can afford such a deep cavity in the sole), you’ll be far more comfortable than everyone else even before you have a drink!
5. iPad Waterwear
The Waterwear iPad cover is the sort of thing people mock, but only because they don’t understand it. They act like simply not having to think is one of the greatest pleasures possible, and it is, but what about those who don’t have to, but get to work at the beach? Or play games in the pool? Marco Polo might be all very well, but a poolside daiquiri and Angry Birds is an almost obscene level of brain relaxation.
The Waterwear iPad cover is yours for only $35, and it’s another all-year-round gadget. Why worry about getting books wet when you can browse in the bath? The most relaxing way to deal with e-mail yet invented, because everything else invented for the purpose sort of dies in the water. (Taking you with them, in the larger cases.)
Image credit: cdwheatley / iStockphoto