I’m originally from Hampton Bays, yet years ago when we moved out to Mastic Beach I had not known quite what I was in for. You see I had friends from the Hampton’s, friends in Manorville, and friends in Moriches. The moment they heard I was moving to Mastic Beach tables turned and my ‘richer’ of friends brought out their true colors.
“Mistake Beach”, “Mastic Trash”, and “Trashtic Mastic” were not uncommon names to be thrown at me.
I liked where I was though. I was 12. The graduating class was nearly 700 or more. There were kids everywhere my age, and none of them were going to judge me based on the shoes or clothes I worse, to them, I was just me. They came from a poor family, I came from a poor family, and everything we had we shared, or borrowed. If Lucy got a newvideo game, we were all at Lucy’s house. If Peter got a new bike, we all took turns riding it. It made sense, it was fun, and honestly a bit charming.
So, I figured I, would take you on a tour through my town and some of my favorite spots, the local people, and what to expect if you come to live here.
Okay… I will start with the schools. Oh yes William Floyd will brag about the size, and the new renovations, and the teachers and staff… It took quite a few years for the renovations to complete, but once all was said and done, the school was a glorious building with enough room to get lost. Intimidating to say the least… but offered plenty. From art classes to photography, it’s got it all. Seriously, the Highschool alone is like a college sized campus.
You have your normal problems, cliches not getting along with other cliques, but its been that way since the beginning of time. I never got into any fights. I always figured if you hang with the wrong crowd you attract trouble. Choices are what you make of schools.
Why Do I Live In Mastic Beach has always been a common question, and honestly I don’t know why. Every town has it’s rap. From here to the Hamptons…there is no such thing as a perfect town. HELLO!
My main reason though…the answer is simple, I am the next generation of children looking to buy on Long Island. Looking to be near my family, and Mastic Beach is all I can afford, I struggle to live in what some consider the worst area on Long Island, because that’s all I can afford. I though, I truly have no complaints. Let them think what they want.
I can’t afford the Hampton’s, their homes are 1 million on average. I can’t afford Manorvilles $500,000-1.2 million dollar homes. I can’t afford Moriches cheaper homes of $400,000. I just can’t afford to live on Long Island unless I strike it rich in the lottery. Long Island has the most expensive homes in all of NY state, yet what is going to happen when all of the next generation children move to the Carolinas where prices are way more affordable?
Our price range right now is about $250,000, slowly the prices are slipping, which is bad for some… yet hopeful for folks like me. It means we can afford a decent house, that will need ‘some work’. However our monthly payments will come to almost $1,700 each after all is said and done. Basically we can afford a home, but buy no clothes. Haha!
Or we sacrifice our car so we can afford some clothes. I always wondered why I see so many people on bikes with nice clothes. It all makes sense now.
Oh we want to have a baby too, in about a year. But thinking of that, just makes the bills go deeper, and deeper, until finally…they take away our home. It’s no wonder NY state has taken a birthrate decline in huge numbers. No one can afford to get pregnant anymore. We can barely afford ourselves.
Hmm… now throw on $300 a month for health insurance just so you can go to the hospital for check ups while you are pregnant! Forget about it.buy a decent home, I can afford a child, and still pay my damn car payments, and live somewhat financially comfortable. The fact of the matter is, I cannot. Who the hell has that kind of money, and don’t give me that bullsh** that I have to get a job. Got one, it pays quite well actually, but not quite well enough. Not well enough as to where I can say, I can
Alright now, I began to riddle there for a moment, simply because I get upset thinking about how ridiculous homes are priced on Long Island, so let me fall back into topic.
Mastic Beach… ah yes…
Mastic Mary, bless her soul. Anyone from this area knows who she is. She is the homeless looking woman who stands in front of Kohl’s with a plastic microphone and sings her heart out for no reason. She belts out of tune anything from Justin Timberlake to Elvis. When you first run into Mastic Mary one may be intimidated, but she’s as harmless as a fly. It’s not uncommon to catch her on a pair or roller skates with a balloon in one hand and her plastic microphone in another. She’s a star just waiting to be born, a comedian, an actress, a singer, and she’d make one hell of a great ‘Welcome to Mastic’ postcard.
They let you rent out movies, books, CD’s, and video games. They also have fun little things that families can join in on. Such as camping trips, tours of NYC, and Boston, crafts, reading nights, poetry nights. You may also use computers for Internet access here. They have even added a jungle gym type room upstairs in the children’s section for parents to watch as their child plays and meets up with other children.
However many parents think this little area is their own personal daycare. I have heard horror stories of parents leaving their children in their while they browse around elsewhere. Man… the good parent award should go to those people. (Keep in mind that was a highly sarcastic remark).
Overall though the library is an awesome place to interact with others, and get involved with after hour activities for young children and teens. I’m very impressed with what they have to offer. I consider it the best library in all of the land. I DO!
The Movie Theater:
No Comment really. I just avoid it. With new renovations though I may check it out and see if it cleaned up a tad. Overall though people tend to ruin movies whenever I go. No matter what theatre it is.
Smith point Beach:
Nice beach, but I find it over priced. Buying the season pass is also pricey, but well worth its weight in gold.
The Bowling Alley-
This is a cool spot to whiddle away a few hours. I’m not much of a bowler, but whenever Im there I find that I leave with a smile on my face, and a fond memory and photos to add to the scrap book.
Osprey Park is also one of my favorite quite beaches. It’s a hidden little gem that many people don’t visit. For some quite time with the family, or for a walk with the dog, I highly recommend you stop in. I enjoy the isolation, and here is where it can be found.
Good Eats can be found at TJ’S Hero, where they make the hottest sizzling steamy sub fresh off the grill…or whatever device they use. I honestly can recommend more good eats, but TJ’S seems to be an addiction lately. I also enjoy the Mastic Diner, which will leave you feeling full for under $10.00. You seriously cannot beat that.
Overall many outsiders look in and give Mastic Beach a bad name. Yeah we struggle to survive, but to be honest it only makes this town stronger. You can’t knock it till you try it. Truly this is not a bad palce at all, and it saddens me to think that so many folks have such a bad image in their minds about this town.
Like any town, there is good, bad, ugly and lovely. Like I said, there is no such thing as the perfect town, no matter how far and wide you search.
I enjoy my town, I enjoy what comes of it, I enjoy the community, and the people. I do however wish just one wish… I wish I didn’t have to struggle just to maintain. Taxes are sickening, and they just get worse year after year after year.