Ring My Belle: Yacht Rock

The sea is the new state fair.

Going on a cruise falls into the same category as stealing Sweet'N Low, wearing a muumuu, and hoarding 90210 action figures purchased on eBay: Things I'll Do When I'm Old. Being young, mobile, and varicose-vein-free, why would I want to be trapped on a floating Mall of America when I could be getting bedbugs in a Turkish hostel or STDs backpacking around Europe? You know, having adventures!

Now, with entertainers like Kid Rock (this week), R. Kelly (in October), and KISS (on Halloween, natch) taking their acts to the high seas, cruises are the new state-fair stage, with fewer corn dogs, more buffets, and a much bigger price tag. The Weezer Cruise packed in 2,200 fans in January, and the New Kids on the Block cruise sold out in four hours.

Young cruisers are paying $900 to $1,400 (airfare and booze not included) for three- to five-day trips to tropical destinations, where they can play beer pong and do Jell-O shots while mingling with Dinosaur Jr, Cannibal Corpse, and Lyle Lovett. And while a rock cruise still lacks the exotica and adventure of a Turkish hostel, I'm pretty sure an STD or two would be pretty easy to lock down.


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