Think Warm Thoughts

It’s been an unusually cold and snowtastic winter here in Durham, with what’s felt like a constant threat of snow, sleet, freezing rain, and the dreaded “wintry mix” hanging over our heads for weeks. The local news has been in nonstop Winter Weather Crisis mode, with round-the-clock footage of what we believe is the same group of itinerant (and possibly feral) children, who follow camera crews around with their pieces of cardboard and garbage can lids so we can see IDENTICAL FOOTAGE of them sliding down a snowy hill and squealing ALL THE TIME.

Most winters we have maybe one dusting of snow, or a few sleet pellets mixed in with the rain once or twice, so being threatened with the Icepocalypse every few days is something we’re not accustomed to. Every time we turn around, we are back at the grocery store kicking somebody in the back to get the last loaf of bread or punching somebody in the windpipe to grab the last gallon of milk. This is really more exercise than we are used to getting. And we won’t even talk about how the schools are constantly letting out early or just plain closed, resulting in selfish children wanting to be picked up or fed or whatever kids are into these days.

So to combat the winter doldrums, we here at Duke Digital Collections present some sunny, tropical images from Ad*Access to help you think warm thoughts. Put on your sunscreen, change into your skimpiest and most scandalous swimsuit, crank up “Vacation” by the Go-Go’s, and let’s hit the beach! (You can click on any of the images to see a larger version and more information about it.)

January is the perfect time of year to visit fabulous Runway Beach! Yes, nothing is more relaxing or romantic than lying on the beach sipping a margarita as you are strafed by a jet that fills your eyes and mouth with sand and blows the drink out of your hand. The smell of cocoa butter mixed with jet exhaust will make you contentedly lie back and say, “AaahhhhhAIIIEEEEEARGGGH KOFF KOFF KOFF.”

Visit the, uhh, glamorous Belgian coast. Now, we love Belgium and are not questioning the glamorousness of its coast, mostly because we are too busy being transfixed by this CRAZY picture. Look at everything that’s going on here! There is, like, a policeman with a donkey, and a couple of mobile cabanas or circus wagons or something, and a woman sunbathing in a shadow, and the Coliseum, and a guy watching a 3-D movie with his pet dinosaur, and we don’t even know what else. With all this going on, there is of course no room left to show the coast or ocean or anything, but we feel confident that if we look hard enough, we will find Waldo somewhere in this picture.

A cruise can be a wonderful vacation, apart from inconveniences like rogue waves capsizing the ship, losing power in the middle of the ocean and being towed back to shore, and, worst of all, having to put your shoes on and leave the ship to visit exotic ports of call. What a drag! That’s why the West Indies, or possibly South America, have recently completed a street-widening-and-liquefying program that allows cruise ships to sail right down Main Street through the middle of town. You can lean out the porthole of your stateroom right here in downtown South America to pet a horse, or pick a coconut, or say hello to Carmen Miranda, all without having to get dressed and put your flip-flops on.

Are you allergic to the ocean? Or maybe you’re like us, and there’s a warrant for your arrest in every seaside resort in the Western Hemisphere. Don’t worry – you can go catch some rays in the desert! Lounge by the pool in sunny Phoenix, fabulous Las Vegas, earthquakey southern California, or tropical Branson, Missouri. We are pretty sure all those places look like this. And if you’re lucky, like this couple, you may catch a glimpse of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower wandering in from the dude ranch next door. Yeehaw!

Wherever your vacation takes you, whether it’s sunny Florida with your family or your dingy basement with a bottle of tequila and the complete “Dukes of Hazzard” on DVD (what, just us?), it’s critical to look good. In our opinion, nothing says “healthy hair” like a shampoo whose name sounds like “anthrax.” Yes, Canthrox shampoo “gives such massy fluffiness that the hair appears much heavier than it really is.” That’s why all the top beauty magazines such as Vogue, Elle, and Popular Mechanics are stressing the importance of heavy hair this year. Remember, if your hair doesn’t look so heavy that your friends wonder how your skull and neck can support it, then YOU ARE NOTHING.

We hope these warm, sunny images have helped lift you out of your winter blahs. If you’re inspired to take a vacation to one of these tropical locales, don’t forget to tell ’em your friends here at Duke Digital Collections sent you. And bring us back a T-shirt or a coconut carved to look like a monkey or something. Considering everything we do for you, it’s really the least you can do.

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