I go to the beach super early in the AM or right before dark between Memorial Day and Labor Day and just take whatever is out there at the time. A few of my friends have beach passes so that they can get to the beach around the better tides or whenever they get out of bed but bodyboarders unfortunately can't share the surfing beaches here in NY (DOH regulations) so we are put in with the "swimmers".

Lately there have been rip current advisories from the National Weather Service because of the surf heights (waist plus) and wind (onshore), so my buds who get to the beach when the lifeguards are on duty have been whistled out of the water on more than one occassion for being too far from shore (!!!), being too close to the red flags, being too close to the ropes that keep you 100 feet from the jetty, breathing/existing, etc. From what I understand, the lifeguards are also whistling surfers out of the water as well at the surfing beaches for the same reasons.

Is this a common phenomenon in other states, or just in New York where people sue if you fart in their general direction?

I just avoid the beach from 9:00 to 6:00, but I do think that people are entitled to undertake "inherently dangerous activities" if they do so desire without being aggravated every 15 seconds.

I appreciate the beach patrol and the complexities of their job, without them I am sure that there are many people who would have lost their lives but there's a line between the person standing at the shore, ankle deep in whitewater, who has no swimming ability and the person who's in the water year round who's too lazy to get out of bed for a DP.