Due to all the things that I need to get done in preparation for SOS, I had decided not to do a blog this week. However, after certain events occurred at the beach last week, I reconsidered. I am of course referring to the "Ducks Debacle."
Let me make a few things clear at the outset. To me, Ducks hasn't been Ducks since Norfleet Jones and Bob Baker turned over their keys. I haven't DJ'd at Ducks but twice since 1999 so it's not going to affect me if the joint lives or dies. But the demise of Ducks will affect a whole bunch of folks. My young friend William Green and the other members of Duck's staff who were cast aside like so much small change, will be greatly affected. The members of the shag community who enjoyed years of memories and who were loyal patrons, will be affected. Also I'm sure that as I write this piece, there are 15 or 20 DJ's looking for a port to weather this storm in.
Short and sweet, what you have here is, a fellow who came down to the beach, with a full bag of money, and an empty bag of history. He obviously had no conception of how things work at the beach, and never got a clue about who and what is important at the beach, and to the shag community as a whole. The first thing he did was to start tearing out the past and completely change the landscape of Ducks. He showed arrogant disregard for tradition, history, and what the folks felt comfortable with. He did away with as much of the past he possible could, and as quickly as he could. The past be damned! This was his club and he was hell bent to put his stamp on it. He turned a cozy little shag joint into a bowling alley. Well you did it your way...how'd that work for you?
Memo to the man from Charlotte: The shag world is about PRESERVATION! It's about HISTORY! The shag community's whole world revolves around THE PAST!
In my very first blog, I spoke about what money will buy you in the shag community. I said it could buy you those fancy "dance" shoes in a bag, and a few shag steps, but it can't buy you a history on the beach. You either lived it or you didn't. So too, a big bag of money and an even bigger ego, does not equal success in the shag joint business at the beach. But a sense of our history and knowing who the players are would likely give you a good head start.
The irony, it seems to me, is that the man who wanted to show us how it should be done at the beach, although he failed miserably, will, in the end, still have a legacy. He will forever be known as the man that killed Ducks.
As I have alluded to before, God blessed me and allowed me to be born in the great state of South Carolina, but I have lived the past 22 plus years in the Atlanta area. The "locals" of greater Atlanta, having had to deal with the influx of folks from the North, have a saying, "We don't give a damn how y'all did it up there...if you don't like the way we do it here...Delta's ready when you are"!
Memo to the man from Charlotte: "Highway 9 is ready when you are"!