Just for the record let it be noted that mermaids are nereids, although not all nereids are mermaids. Nereids are sea water nymphs and there are 50 of them--all the daughters of sea gods Nereus and Doris. Many of these linages are important to us today; for example the nereids Amphitrite mates with Poseidon and bears Triton, a merman, often depicted as blowing on conch horns and holding a staff with three points. We see a lot of Tritons about at the Mermaid Parade. Incidentally another nereid, Thetis mates with the hero Peleus and bears Achilles with his venerable heel, but that is a story that takes us away our goal--the Mermaid Parade at Coney Island.
Each year the mermaids and mermen of Coney Island usher in summer with a parade of bathing beauties, classic cars, and music. To the Bikini Scientist, the Mermaid Parade is a tableau of bikinis, of course, but also of costumes with a colorful homemade twist (MPA204). Depending upon the mood of the mayor, toplessness may erupt, but in more controlled years the mermaids must resort to body paint (MP9524, MP95A6, MP9609, MP9611, MP9664), pasties (MP9608, MP9641, MP9650, MP9692, MPA220-23, MPA233, MPA2J6, MPA2T2), starfish (MP95A6, MPA259, MPA2M7), breast drapes (MPA2N1), and armor (MP96F2-F4). Some mermaids try to cover up their nipple rings (MP4090), and a few just wear their rings (MP4310). Themes for the floats include American flags (MPA230) and Lobster Boys (MPA232).
Spectators are also a treat: cleavage in a croptop (MP96G2) and a string halter (MP96A1), string bikini (MP9572), buttage in shorts (MP96H6), and an unsnapped navel (MPA2P0).
Mermaids are also early adoptors of navel piercings, which trickle in the late 1990s (MP9568, MP9572, MP9608, MP96A1), and becomes a blur of details beyond 2000 (MPA230, MPA231, MPA233, MPA2J6, MPA2M7, MPA2N1, MPA2T2.
Mermaids have a history, never forget, the yarns from the ancient days when the nereid ruled and , through the years when Hollywood mermaids enchanted millions (e.g., MR192510, JL3910, AB4810, GM4810, Esther Williams). Never forget that these half women, half fish are dangerous creatures.