Tag Archives: Dave Barry

visitors’ guide to south florida– via Dave Barry


Good morning, all!

Last time I shared with you my favorite Murphy’s Law quotations.  The other group of page-a-day pages stuck up on my wall are from my old Dave Barry calendar (Boy, do I miss his column!).  They are all from his “Visitors’ Guide to South Florida” series.  [Those of you who have lived there will know how true these are!  They almost make me homesick.]

Population: South Florida is a real “melting pot” whose residents come from all over the world, bringing with them a wide variety of languages, cultures, narcotics, etc.  Despite our differences, we South Floridians are united by a common belief, which is that every one of us, regardless of race, or religion, or ethnic background, could be armed.

Economy: The largest single industry in South Florida is pest control, followed by sprinkler repair, wiretapping, snake importing, and begging at intersections.

System of Government: Elections are held at regular intervals as ordered by the courts, with turnout ranging as high as 347 voters, of whom as many as 153 may actually be the same voter, who is not always technically alive.  The officials elected via this process traditionally serve for three months or until they are indicted, whichever comes first.  Then we have new elections, usually resulting in the same officials being reelected, because South Florida voters prefer experienced leaders who will “hit the ground running” and not waste a lot of time shopping for defense attorneys.

Museums: Right.  Like you would ever go to a museum.

Tourist Attractions: Probably our biggest tourist attraction is naked Europeans on the beach.  To find them, walk along the beach until you start seeing people without any bathing suits; these are your naked Europeans.  When you see them, act cool.  Don’t stare or shout: “Hey!  You people are NAKED!”  Instead, walk back and forth past them forty-five or fifty times, sneaking peeks while pretending that you’re looking for some object that you lost in the sand.  It helps if you periodically remark aloud: “I’m looking for some object that I lost in the sand!”

Driving: South Florida traffic operates under international standards, under which each motorist obeys the laws of his or her individual country of origin.  The proud motto of the South Florida motorist is “Death Before Yielding.”

Mass Transit: Miami is blessed with a modern, interconnected light-rail transit system.  If you figure out how it works, please let us know.

Nightlife: The hottest nightspot is South Beach where, on any given evening, you’ll find thousands of fun-seekers staying up until the “wee hours” in their never-ending quest to find a parking space.  Once you find a spot for your car (allow two days for this), you can take your pick among literally dozens of night-clubs that offer hot music, cold drinks, and large men outside refusing to let you in because you are, no offense, from Iowa.  Or you can go to the world-famous Joe’s Stone Crab restaurant and experience, as many thousands have experienced before you, a legendary, world-class wait for a table.

If you enjoyed these, go immediately and read Dave Barry’s book “Big Trouble.”  The film is pretty good, too.

For more Dave Barry, see below: