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Color My World: Oh Say Can You O.C.?

I spent a couple of days this week in Ocean City, Md., researching columns that will run next week. I really should go there for fun some day.

I never went in high school, when O.C. was the destination for seniors intent on a little debauchery. It's so different from the beach I've been going to for years--the placid, undeveloped Pawleys Island, S.C.--that Ocean City almost gives me vertigo. But I like it, from its oddly-named motels (the Barefoot Mailman?) to the Day-Glo paint some of its businesses cloak themselves in.

If you run a restaurant in Ocean City you want to get peoples' attention. Here's what one particular crabhouse does:


I'm not sure that that lurid orange and that lurid green are supposed to go together, but they do many an impression on the old retinas. The word "JUMBO" is spelled out in planters across the parking lot, continuing the eye-watering color scheme.


Things are a little more subdued at this crabhouse, which favors a light blue-and-yellow paint job:



Finally, this breakfast restaurant favors pink in various shades:

While that may not be the color palette you want to encounter when you're nursing a nasty hangover, it is memorable. And that's what you want at Ocean City, where our experiences are reduced to the most primal of urges. We devolve into sodden, sunburned amoebas, responding only to the strongest of stimuli.

By John Kelly  |  August 13, 2009; 10:15 AM ET
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Heh. I got a share in a house in Ocean Pines, so I go down every weekend. Spend a couple days sitting on the beach.

Waterman's on Rt 50 is the crab house to go to. Crabcake Factory on approx 125th has great crabcakes.

Posted by: wiredog | August 13, 2009 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Hey, I just ate at that neon crabhouse, Bahama Mamas, last week!!

Posted by: Junior3 | August 13, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I think the ugliest part of that first restaurant is the Bud Light sign! I kinda like the cheesy paint colors. :-)

Posted by: Akinoluna | August 13, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

OC is great. And if you do get tired of the vibe, just hop north to the Delaware beach towns.

Posted by: junkdalejreyes | August 13, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

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