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| Culture |

Among the Yacht Crowd at the Miami International Boat Show

Elvis Ramirez

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Click here to view a slide show from the Miami International Boat Show.

The Yacht and Brokerage Show, which continues until President’s Day, was a good display of boats – and vanity.

“[I can afford this] I have a house in the mountains, actually I have three,” I overheard one man say as I passed a couple of boats each valued at over a million dollars. I know that isn’t your standard conversation among the elite, but I honestly felt like pushing the guy into the water. Thankfully, a lot of the people at the show on Saturday were actual boating enthusiasts, so I didn’t have to bear the snobbery for long.

The smell of Budweiser coming from the concession stands mixed with the sea air to create a distinct aroma that I’m sure is only distinguishable during the boat show. At the very least, it covered the smell of the bull crap the salespeople were spewing. How else can someone convince anyone to buy such unnecessary (until global warming makes Waterworld a reality, that is), expensive things?

I saw a boat valued at $5 million. Five million dollars. How is it possible for someone to have so much damn money that they are willing to spend the equivalent of ten houses on Miami Beach itself for a boat? The people who really enjoyed themselves this Saturday were the ones that didn’t have to foot the bill for such a luxury, or those who purchased one of the more reasonably priced yachts.

Many were there just to admire the yachts, and they were truly awesome things to look at up close. However, because things were so crowded there on Collins Avenue, after a while a person may have gotten the feeling that they’ve seen all of it already.

Visitors were able to board the boats. Most just sat in the boat getting a feel for the controls or doing something of the like, but near the end of the day one boat was a party scene. Now, it wasn’t a booty-shaking dance fest but people were actually having fun just talking and sipping beer. There is hope yet for these snobby folks.

I have to take a second and mention the parking situation. Yes, it is that important. For one, traffic was insane, but that was to be expected. The real kicker was the fact that because the cheaper lots filled up early in the morning several hotels on the beach were offering their lots, although for a hundred dollars a pop. Now, I know what some of you may say, “It is valet parking, $100 isn’t so bad.” That seems logical until you realize the fact that you are paying $100 to go to a free event. I guess if you are willing to shell out millions for a yacht, a hundred bucks isn’t so bad. -- Elvis Ramirez

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