This was originally published in East Hampton Patch.
It’s official. Douchebag spotters has gone viral. And it has competitors. It seems that locals have had enough and we are not going to take it anymore. The internet is the perfect venue to spew everything from our head-scratching WTFs to our road-rage moments that could so easily go wrong. So venting is good.
I am having a love/hate relationship with it, personally. I, like most people, am not a fan of cyber-bullying, putting people down based on the way they look, which is just juvenile (i.e. being overweight, being short, etc.), but I do like to see that I’m not the only one shocked at the bad parking, the entitled behavior and cellphonemania.
I’m a fair person. I hate how locals park their SUVs on the beach at Maidstone. Why anyone would want to sunbathe and swim in the shadow of their beloved Ford Broncos with their exhaust fumes and hibachis is beyond me. This is how stereotypes are born.
But the other day I read a self-proclaimed “citiot” respond to a local who complained about their behavior while visiting their Hamptons home. They told the local that they should stop whining and that without the “citiots” that we’d be “Patchogue.” The implication that we NEED them is what got me to start thinking about what “citiots” mean to the East End.
Let me enlighten the “citiot.” The East End is turning into Patchogue because of them. We live here because it is rural and beautiful. We are not the ones putting up McMansions. We are not the ones spraying our lawns with poison, we are not the ones driving out mom-and-pop shops, we are not the ones circumventing jobs because they need their pop-up stores and Guccis and yet another all-mighty Ralph Lauren shop that creates jobs for 3 months then kills them in the Fall. Incidentally, I have never heard this many Irish, Aussie and other foreign accents working in our local stores before. Are there no high-school kids who need jobs making cappucinos?
Southampton is slowly turning into a suburb. If they want to be in the suburbs, go back to Nassau county. Lots of suburbs with tons of Home Depots and Targets.
We need leaders who will make incentives to local businesses to grow and make it harder for outside stores who have no plans to join the community yearround to open shop to make a quick buck. Landlords need to see how it’s detrimental to the area to squeeze out businesses that have been here for decades.
When I worked in a real estate office, I remember a hedgefund manager come in and declare he’d just gotten a three million dollar bonus and what did we have in that price range. You’d think he were buying an air conditioner. This was in 2010ish. While we were struggling to keep our life savings and not lose our homes to foreclosure because of the gambling of these Masters-of-the-Universe types – who had their hand out in a flash like a beggar soon after destroying the world economy – they were getting bonuses and buying up the “cheaper” homes on our shores.
What they need to realize is that while we can deal with the beach dotted with monstrous crooks and self-proclaimed divas, it’s not okay to be a douche.