As a seasonal resident of St. Thomas, I have observed many tourists coming to grief as they innocently try to emulate their social media idols. I am therefore writing to make others aware of a new class of ailment called Flaunting-Related Injury. FRI was first observed among a small subset of particularly attractive, bikini-clad people, such as Salma Hayek and Elizabeth Hurley, who began flaunting back in the 1990s, long before the advent of social media. Today, though, ubiquitous photo-sharing apps such as Instagram and Facebook and Snapchat make it possible for average people to flaunt.
According to medical experts, FRI is characterized by chronic sprains and strains of the muscles and ligaments involved in showcasing one’s swimsuit-clad body, or flaunting, in a manner calculated to result in the most appealing and revealing (but not quite pornographic) photograph. The severity of FRI depends on such factors as degree of arching of the spine, speed and degree of saucy cocking of the hip, and height obtained during exuberant leaps skyward in a fully-extended splits position. Secondary to FRI are minor injuries such as sunburn, grit-knee from kneeling on the beach, and HCPS, or Hermit Crab Pinch Syndrome, resulting from assuming a full lotus position in a bikini, with shoulders thrown back fetchingly, while unknowingly sitting upon the subterranean hiding places of the reclusive (hence the name) yet territorial creatures.
Injury can be avoided by not flaunting at all. However, if you must flaunt, experts recommend doing so only in the early morning or the evening when the rays of the sun are less intense, wearing knee pads, and checking the area for crabs before flaunting.
Be careful out there, folks!
Christopher Jones, St. Thomas