Stories from my 14-month study abroad in Buenos Aires, my 16-month post-college move to Miami, and my get-me-the-hell-out-of-Miami move to Denver

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

SOBE: Sadly Overrun By Eccentrics

For the record, I JUST invented that acronym. I really hope it catches on, because when it does, this blog will give me dated proof that I created the term.

A coworker of mine recently quipped, "All the assholes of the world gravitate towards South Beach. That's a small area for so many people." I don't completely agree, but he made a very good point.

South Beach is the area south of 20th Steet and, I'd say, from Washington Avenue to the to east. Half of the southern peninsula of Miami Beach is a nice, quiet residential neighborhood. The other half is what has become known as South Beach, or SOBE.

South Beach is known for its wild club scene. Lots of house and techno music, pretty girls dancing in bikinis, the usual. It's right up there with Ibiza as the place to make a name for yourself in the clubbing community. That being said, everyone and their brother comes to South Beach to try to make it. The same goes for New York, but New York is HUGE, South Beach is TINY. All these eccentric personalities are dispersed among all the common New Yorkers. Those same personalities are saturating South Beach, with no locals in the mix to thin out the mixture of eccentric to regular.

Let me explain:

The following personalities all go to South Beach to make a name for themselves:

-Club DJs
-Music Producers
-Go Go Dancers
-Club Promoters
-Drug Dealers
-Porn Stars

All of these people are squeezed into the tiny tip of Miami Beach.

That said, spending time, for me, in SOBE, can be very trying on my mental health. Everyone you meet is extremely attention deprived and doing anything possible to get people to look at them, be it driving in decked out cars with loud music, screaming in the streets, freestyle rapping on a corner, sexually harassing you as you walk by a strip club, offering you drugs, etc. Everyone is trying to be more extravagant than the next. If one guy has his radio at volume level 10, the next guy has to crank is to 20, just to get people to look his way. Well look, here comes guy #3, and you better believe he'll turn his up louder. And so it begins.

The fact of the matter is that you can't put all these people in the same confined space, and expect a normal society to function. It's impossible. Most people I've met have told me they got burned out on SOBE after living there for a few months. You just can't be surrounded by so many wannabes for that much time, it takes its toll.

I've come to realize that you don't see these people in Miami proper. Most, if not ALL, of these SOBE personalities never leave their little sanctuary of sin. Few of the people I have conversed with even know where the Design District, my neighborhood, is. And my neighborhood is considered the most up-coming neighborhood in Miami. These people are just so content in their bubble, they never leave. Which, for all intents and purposes, is great, because I'd rather not see them in my part of town.

I'll be writing about the difference in Beach vs City personalities tonight, and dispelling the myth that Miami natives are unfriendly people.

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