The July 4th Long Weekend

Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay

There are a lot of fireworks, big or small, in Edison Township over the weekend and one very exuberant one just blasted off outside of my window by a neighbor I guess. This year’s celebration is obviously more intense than last year, or any previous year.

It is still illegal to sell, possess, or use most fireworks in New Jersey, but the law relaxed a little bit a while ago. Now it is OK to hold a handheld sparkler or light up a ground based firecracker. It used to be that any fireworks is forbidden except those explicitly allowed by the township, which posed a problem for many Asian immigrants who have the tradition of using firecrackers to ward off haunting spirits when moving into a new place. I have tried to write a story about this, but due to my inability to come up with an interesting ending, the story hasn’t materialized.

The neighboring state of Pennsylvania doesn’t have a strict fireworks rule. It is rumored–I don’t know if this is true–that along the New Jersey-Pennsylvania border there are stores selling firecrackers on the Pennsylvania side, enticing people from New Jersey to go and buy it and transport it in defiance of New Jersey law.

Here is how I celebrated the July 4th in the past ten years:

  1. Grilled fish cakes, pineapple, riceburger (cooked rice made into hamburger shape) in a friend’s backyard. The food was delicious, but we couldn’t agree on how to clean up the grill afterwards.
  2. Travel to Monmouth County–about 30 miles south of Edison–to do some saltwater fishing. I was totally against this, but I was overruled, as usual–I always represent minority views, even among friends. The fact is close to New York City (we are 30 miles from it), the ocean just doesn’t look very blue or very clean–it is said Exxon Mobil dirtied up the Hudson River for decades in the 20th century) which is why most of New York City’s seafood comes from elsewhere, either far north past Connecticut or south past Atlantic City into Maryland. I was just worried that we were going to catch several polluted fish and poison ourselves, but again my voice was not considered important. We went, standing on the piers extending into the ocean for more than 200 feet, throwing a certain fishing contraption with fastened chicken legs into the ocean underneath the pier. We didn’t catch much at all. Thank goodness.
  3. Read a book about the American Revolution. I tried to read a book about Hamilton, but gave it up after the first ten pages. Instead I read “Burr” by Gore Vidal, which is more interesting.
  4. Went to watch firework at Delaware River Waterfront in Philadelphia. It’s a spectacular show and it is unforgettable. Fireworks over water is the best show ever. When we wanted to get back, we realized that we forgot where we parked. It took us about two hours to find our car.
  5. We tried to watch a video at a friend’s place about the Revolutionary War and couldn’t find any. The movie “Independence Day” is not about the Revolutionary War. We ended up watching “The Last Of The Mohicans” instead and none of us understood the conflict very much at all.
  6. We tried to talk about American history around that time to show who knew more. One of us was very interested in food and everything he talked was related to food. And he said he couldn’t believe the revolutionists really dumped the tea leaves in Boston harbor. That’s just too wasteful. They must have dumped the empty chest and carried the tea leaves back home secretly for later consumption.

28 thoughts on “The July 4th Long Weekend

    1. Yes, I have seen non-gluten pizza made of rice before. LOL. And I love rice or wheat noodles, or any noodles. Can’t wait for the autumn so that I can restart my regular diet–bowls of steamy hot noodle soup.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lol same I mainly survive on rice and noodles. I really like cold noodles in summer- they’re very cooling. I tried spicy watermelon noodles the other day and they were surprisingly good.


  1. Sounds like you had an okay time. Abbott and Costello are one of my favorite comedy teams and really clean and funny. I would recommend pretty much anything they did. The Time of Their Life may not be to historical but it is hysterical.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Most fireworks are illegal here too and it still doesn’t seem to stop people from firing them off every New Years. People seem to be very persistent when it comes to shooting them off if they want to. I like how you try to do something to celebrate every year even if it’s just by reading a book or watching a film.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL. Thank you. I try to do something to fit the occasion. You know I hate physical activities and the only activity I like is reading. Everything else is just a necessary evil. I would often read a ghost story for Halloween, a holiday story for Christmas, an Asian book for Lunar New Year etc. LOL. Thank you for being such an inspiration with stories of your life and how you deal with people who try to put you down. You go, girl. Proudly pursue your goal…


  3. it was my understanding growing up that you couldn’t buy aerial fireworks in Pa and had to go to NJ. Then the laws slightly changed but it was deemed dangerous to buy aerials at road side tent sales, there are still laws in place about what and where you can shoot off fireworks, but those laws are constantly broken by people 😡 You had some pretty interesting 4th of Julys. A fantasy comedy that takes place during the revolutionary war is Abbott and Costellos the Time of their lives, there is also a musical from the 70’s called 1776. There might not be recent films but there are films out there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, I wonder what fantasy comedy is. And it would be interesting to know what Abbott and Costellos is about. LOL.
      I guess PA and NJ have reversed their rules now. LOL. It is true that fireworks are hazardous.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Abbott and Costello were a comedy duo. The fantasy comedy film The Time of their lives, Costello plays a blacksmith during the revolutionary war that is murdered and becomes a ghost, it’s a very cool film, not scary

        Liked by 1 person

        1. LOL. What a wonderful plot. I guess a lot of people’s life were disrupted by the revolutionary war. Betsy Ross’s first two husbands were killed in the war.


  4. The only movie that I can think of that portrays the American Revolution is The Patriot starring Mel Gibson. It’s less of a historical movie and more of a propaganda film. It’s very inaccurate but it does portray how nationalist Americans see themselves and the war.

    And yes it’s true. Along the border there are many fireworks shops to sell to out of state travelers. It’s very American as it happens all over the country.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Wow, I don’t know that movie. I wish I like Mel Gibson, but for some reason I don’t. Why not Jeremy Iron?
      LOL, really? Along the borders? That’s so funny. I heard that in New York City there are a lot of violations concerning fireworks since many Asian immigrants want to practice the ancient customs but not able to. LOL. I should write a story about this.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s ok, nobody likes Mel Gibson haha. Why not Jeremy Iron? Ask the producer, lol.

        But, as you know, states have different laws, so there is always a rush during summer time where people go to different areas to buy fireworks. People from Illinois would go to Indiana or from Ohio to Michigan and so on.

        I would love to read that story.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. LOL. Nobody? That’s about right. He is really unlovable.
          Yes, isn’t it funny that most of the laws are state specific. That’s a new concept for immigrants. LOL.
          yes, I am still thinking about this firework story but I don’t have an ending yet. Ending is killing my stories. Many good stories just cannot see the light of day because it doesn’t have a beautiful tail. LOL.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Gibson’s star came crashing down when he was caught saying hateful words about the Jews. He also directed “Passion of the Christ” which some say he hinted at Jesus being killed by the Jews, one of the original antisemitic beliefs.

          If you can’t make a beautiful tail, you can always make a funny one 😛

          Liked by 1 person

        3. Gosh, I never like him. Long before his racist rant, I just don’t like him. I don’t know why. I don’t even like his Lethal Weapon. Actually I like most of stars, except very few. And he belongs to the very few.
          LOL. I wish I am so humorous to make a funny tail. My humor is quite inadequate. LOL.

          Liked by 1 person

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