The Hamptons is a divisive place but I love it and I'll be schlepping there the minute Memorial Day Weekend starts (ie: now). Yes, there's traffic -- so find shortcuts. Yes, it's a nightmare to get into Nick and Toni's -- so don't go. Yes, Martha Stewart is around every corner and every wall is wainscoted to hell but I don't have a problem with that.
I've rented the same little beach shack for 12 years and to me the Hamptons means the beach and American Flags and magnificent colors everywhere and Sam's Pizza and the Snowflake and Cromer's Market and grilling everything.
Most of all, the Hamptons to me means I get to hang out with Bill Persky. Bill is more than just dad to Andy's Blog regular Liza, he's a TV legend who created "That Girl" and "Kate and Allie" and was a freaking writer (along with his partner Sam Denoff) of "The Dick Van Dyke Show". That is a BIG deal in case you are a bonehead and don't realize that. (And if you are a bonehead why are you reading this blog, by the way? This is for ADVANCED types so please click to the "Blow Out" page of Bravotv.com and go crazy.) Bill also happens to be one of those rare people who has life all figured out. He's a seventysomething guy who'll feed you lunch (great cook), take you out on his sailboat, tell you showbiz stories and repeat it all when it's time for dinner. He takes in stray people and always has an extra seat at the table (unless he hates you.) He's also funny as hell. And he has a hot wife named Joanna who makes me devilled eggs every time I visit. (I love 'em!)
I could fill the whole website up with madcap stories of Perskys and stray deers and Chinese Chicken Salad and Goldie Hawn but there was one specific night a few years ago that I'm thinking about on this Memorial eve. I'll get killed for this, but I can't for the life of me remember what Bill cooked that night. Perhaps it was Shrimp Remoulade. It might've been Chilean Sea Bass. I don't know but it was great. The night was a lot of laughs and around the time we were packing it in, somehow it was suggested (I am pretty sure That Girl was the culprit) that I would "run" Mr. Posner and wife to where they were staying in Southampton. I happened to hear this in the background and started to freak. It is not fun or quick to "run" someone from Shelter Island to Southampton on a Saturday night. And by the way what in the hell was I going to say to Vladdy Posner for the interminable car ride? I was getting myself together to head to Shelter Island for a Persky dinner when Bill called. "Phil and Marlo are coming and I need you to give them a ride," he said. "Pick them up at the dock in Sag Harbor. See you at 7:30, darling." He calls guys "darling" sometimes. (He's Old School Straight.)