From Feet's E-mailbox...

Hi, Sandy Feet!

I'm Chick Bisberg, acknowledged to be the Kahuna of Beachglass here on the East Coast. Serious perusal of your excellent website and associated links to the SPI/Brownsville area has prompted me to contact you, as a clearly kindred soul. You and the other SOBs seem to have things well under control down there in ArmadilloLand, but I'm curious about your take on the local scene re: my own peculiar passion: YOU GOT ANY BEACHGLASS DOWN THERE?

Now, I grew up on the South Shore of Long Island, NY in the 50's and 60's, and have combed the beaches from Coney Island to Montauk Point. As a "grownup", I live here in South Orange, NJ, and take my wife and kids to Long Beach Island (LBI), an over-developed barrier beach vacationland off the Jersey Shore ("The Beach", to us NY'ers). I've traveled some, and on every beach I ever haunt, I've searched for beachglass.

I trust that you are something of an afficionada on things beachy, so I want to know the truth. What's the situation? Lots? None? Quality? (My own standards are quite rigorous, and I'll elaborate if you ask me to...) Let me hear from you!

By The Way: The mother of one of my son's friends has the most unfortunate name: Sandi Dick.

--Chick Bisberg


Hey, Chick -- Greetings from SPI!

In the sixteen years I have been walking the local beaches, I have found only one piece of beachglass. This does not necessarily mean that our island beaches are beachglass-impaired, however. The Grateful DuneHead, upon learning that beachglass is any piece of glass that has been polished smooth by sand and wave action, says he's seen plenty of it -- though he has no good answer to the question, "why didn't you pick any of it up?"

So, island beach combers -- can we help Chick out here? What's the local beachglass situation? Do we have enough to lure him down here to see for himself?

Hi Sandy !

My name is Alvin Lee, a.k.a. Lee Ngian Loong. I live in Singapore - 5 minutes from the Beach, but it's no Idyllic fine Sandy beaches with coconut/palm trees and Bacardi Coke and Bikini girls. It's more like reclaimed (man-made) less than 1 km length & less than 3 m wide of nice white sand with oil tankers and commercial ships docked out there.

Also because we live in the tropics, most people shy away from the sun. Plus we are not a wealthy country like yours to enjoy higher pursuit of leisure time. In Asia, it's not cool to appear "relaxed " and indulge in any non-money making pursuits/hobby e.g. golf is okay 'cause business deals are made there, anything else is frowned-upon...........

Anyway, I like sandcastle building because my 9-yr-old son & I enjoy outdoor activities together. We have tried many times before to construct the bigger ones. Any suggestions ?? I'm particularly interested to construct the real tall & slender ones, because it doesn't look like much work !!!

Any way, I promise to send you some pictures of the sandcastles we build. They are nothing great...... after we have seen yours.

My son says that he is really, really, really impressed with your creation.

Problem is --Dad now has to create them just as good as yours (HELP !!!)

Regards, Alvin Lee & Tom Lee


Okay. I feel bad. No bikini girls; no Bacardi cokes and relaxation is discouraged -- you don't make Singapore sound very attractive to this sandcastling beach lover.

If you didn't live on the other side of the planet, I would suggest that you and your son join me for a Sunday Sandcastle Club session some Sunday at noon on the beach at Boomerang Billy's so you could take advantage of the free instruction I offer.

I think your son is lucky to have you for a father, and for that reason I will part with one of the few remaining copies of our book, Sand Castles Step-by-Step. (A new edition is scheduled to be printed in Japanese later this year, but I don't suppose that will do you much good.)

At any rate, I hope the book helps. If you still have questions, remember that sandcastle aid is as close as your computer ... thanks for writing!

Dear Sandy,

I need your help. You may be aware of the law suit that Randy Moore is involved in with the Town of South Padre. ILLEGAL construction is occurring on Public Beach. The AG's Office doesn't care, neither does the GLO and they are not prepared to take any action at this time.......

Meanwhile, dunes at the north end of the island are being torn down!

The beach is your livelihood, and basically it's the livelihood of most of the people involved with the Island. If there was no beach, there would be no tourism! Not only that, but irresponsible construction on the Island is a threat to the residents' insurance premiums according to FEMA.

If you have any ideas, suggestions, or information that may be of use to us, please E-mail me. : )



If you have some comments or ideas for Louise, but no e-mail capabilities, I will be happy to pass them on to her. -sf

There are five (5) ways to submit your questions/comments for future Ask Sandy columns: In person; by phone or fax (761-6222); the US Postal System (box 2694,spi,78597) and E-mail: ( Visit the SOB Sandcastle Page ( for tips on sandcastling, contest info, recent Ask Sandy columns, and my reviews of local businesses.

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