Here is something that would be fun to see: how about if LBI, to distinguish itself as a unique destination along the Jersey Shore, implemented a system of Osprey style Summer Rentals? Instead of having lots of individual, private homes with high ticket rents and a confusing network of brokers, we instead just moved to the first-come, first-serve, free-for-all system employed by our local Osprey.
This would be pretty simple. We’d just need to bulldoze all the rental properties and ask Ben Wurst, the Osprey Hero for the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ, to put up lots of small, rugged, coastal-friendly, easy to maintain domiciles like he does for Osprey all throughout the State. If you’re worried about how you’ll sleep on an Osprey Platform, don’t: Ben is also a Master Woodworker (check out his Reclaimed NJ portfolio) and would surely craft us some nifty little domiciles.
Following the Osprey model, we’d open the Season in mid-March at which point you could come and claim your perfect Summer rental by simply sitting in it, and then immediately preparing to defend it for the remainder of the Season. Just like the Osprey are doing right now.
When the Osprey return to us each Spring, it is usually the most experienced males who arrive first. I don’t want to start any controversy here, but something makes me think that’s not how it is going to work with us. It’s mostly the women I know that would be first on the scene, smartly grabbing up the choice properties on Day One. The majority of the “experienced males” I know are more likely to show up in July, eventually finding the only, crumbling, flooded place left, then proceeding to say stuff like “Isn’t this perfect!” and “We didn’t want any of those fancy, dry places near the Beach anyway… too windy. And besides, this flooded ground floor will keep us cool!”
This would only be fair if we played it by Osprey Rules. You’ll have to grab your spot early, and make sure someone always remains in the house for basically the remainder of the Season. Your family can join you at anytime, but they should not wait too long… no holding spots. I think it is fair to say that if your family can’t find you on the Island by, let’s say, June, then you have to take on another family with the same problem. If your family eventually shows up after you’ve already taken on a new family, then they can just fight it out, sometimes to the death, like the Osprey do. If your new family wins, well, I’m sorry, but that’s now your new family for life. Hopefully you get along because you’ll have to find each other again next season. Osprey Rules.
Oh, And NO CELLPHONES. Because that’s totally cheating. Besides, who really wants a cellphone at the Beach anyway.
Even if you think this is a horrible idea, follow along as Ben Wurst and the NJ Osprey Project help the Osprey get settled in for the Season.