Archive for March, 2011

Buyer’s Remorse

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

For those of us who decided that a Jackson Center product was a reasonable and prudent investment, oh how wrong we were.   A discretionary purchase for lifestyle and recreational use, yes, but can any Airstream match the result below ?

Jan 21, 2011, at the Gooding Auction in Scottsdale, AZ , lot # 137, a 1935 Bowlus Road Chief in “used” condition sold for $ 187,000.  No, this is not a misprint….one hundred eighty seven thousand dollars and no/100 cents. Exhibited with a rare 1938 Tatra coupe which was not included as part of the sale.

d61360ec0ac519d34b91bd41ed4bdddd-origpng.jpeg

A combination suitable for the renowned Ken and Petey Faber Collection

Quite the rage in Europe before WWII: “Tatra” T77, made in Czechoslovakia in the mid 30’s, is the finest example of advanced aerodynamic design

393827221_839a471b26.jpg

From Pebble Beach, noted car collector, Jay Leno, visits with Tatra owner, John Long, in this seven minute video if you choose to click here, as it is quite informative and entertaining.

Pictured below, from the man-in-the-maze blog of March 8, 2011, is John Long’s Bowlus Road Chief, a totally restored version (not the Gooding sale road chief) and clearly more valuable than the Arizona estate in the background.

john-long-bowlus1.jpg

Where did we go wrong ?

Happy = Infatuation

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

Happiness makes me sad.  

Not the despondence where suicidal thoughts are the most cheerful option, but the cascade of sadness that showers over one at the local supermarket strip center. Surrounded by the overweight; that nearly 70% of the adult population either mildly, moderately, or morbidly obese. Let the scientists, pundits, as-seen-on-TV doctors, and weightwatchers® postulate the cause for this “epidemic”:

  • the technology revolution that allows us to accomplish everything while doing nothing
  • A diet of processed high-fat convenience foods
  • Unrealistic reality shows that create celebrity glorifying fat bottoms
  • High speed living that necessitates drive-thru dining or ‘eating out’

I, however, would like to make a case to disown happiness and embrace sadness.  Here, in a 20 minute grocery spree, is the tearful result:

  • French’s Mustard: Happy Starts Here
  • Ben & Jerry’s ice cream: Scoop of Happiness
  • Open Happiness‘™ Enjoy Life’s Simple Pleasures With Coca-Cola
  • From the makers of Tostitos®, Doritos®, and Cheetos® who feature this mantra:

Sensible Snacking

Snacking is a fun thing to do, but did you know that it can also be good?

Please.

Are we a nation of idiots ?

On the perimeter of the same shopping mall, a Golden Corral restaurant banner, 30′ wide, proclaims, “Help Yourself to Happiness” and across the highway, the Golden Arches promotes The Happy Meal, apparently not decomposing for 180 days, a delightful combination of burger, fries, and a cheap Chinese trinket.  No sad kids left behind in this pre-school indoctrination. 

Perhaps the pinnacle of our national gluttony is the IHOP on the same block: Come Hungry, Leave Happy®.  I’m not sure what the initials stand for, but here’s a thought, I Heart Obese People.  The latest NEW! offering is Cinn-A-Stack french toast described as follows:

A stack of three (3) slices of THICK CUT french toast layered with a cinnamon roll filling then drizzled with rich cream cheese icing & topped with whipped topping.  

Or you might choose the Cinn-A-Stack combo of two slices (~ 1010 cal.) by adding two eggs + hash browns (~ 1080 cal.) and your choice of 2 strips of bacon or pork sausage (~ 180 cal.).

Not taken into the calorie accounting, sugary soft drinks, butter, and fruit syrup over the gigantic mess.  Just think, enough calories to sustain an average adult for two full days, and it’s only breakfast, a corporation concocted dessert….the most important meal of the day from an old refrain.  And on this Sunday morning, a line has formed while people wait to be seated.  

I can be both empathetic and sympathetic having once fought bulge myself. Watching friends die too young, and painfully, from diabetes, congestive heart failure, and colon cancer, is the most effective appetite suppressant. What makes me happy is being an old curmudgeon, a fuddy-duddy, who can still get nauseated at our collective excess.  When I’m no longer able to puke, it will be time to go. Today when I get home my lunch will be a scoop of funky monkey ice cream on a bed of cheetos and lathered with a layer of mustard, washed down with a cherry coke.  So giddy I’ll want to die.

About the Author

Retired 1997.
Frequent travel. Loyal companions: wife, Lynn; dog, Jack.
Avocation: writing social and political satire.
Past life: three decade clinical pharmacy owner. Now in recovery.
Location: Northern Indiana, Eastern U.P. of Michigan, Southern Arizona

No telephone;
E-mail cspiher@aol.com