Monday, May 30, 2016

Stall tactics

North Carolina, your bathroom law isn’t just bigoted, it’s stupid. Calling it moronic would unjustly denigrate morons everywhere. See, the thing is, the rule of unintended consequences is standing right in plain sight, ready to bitchslap you back to reality. Have you even thought about how there are transgender people of both sexes? Because while you’re slavering over salacious hypotheticals featuring pedophiles in the little girls’ room, you should be getting ready to explain to your daughter that your stupid law is why that fellow is in the ladies' washroom at the Cracker Barrel, trimming his beard over the sink.

Monday, May 23, 2016

The numbers don't lie.

Here’s a new feature where from time to time we will look at some of the facts and figures that are affecting our lives, and grossly misinterpret them. I shall call this special feature The Bad Statistician. Yes I shall. Ahem. In the year 2010, the average United States family of four spent $11.46 on unwrought rhodium. (Unwrought rhodium imports totaled $884,811,866, the population was 308,745,538.) The market price for the metal is around $675 an ounce, so somewhere in the average American home there is about a half gram of rhodium. Why would anyone make such a silly purchase?

Monday, May 16, 2016

I'm just saying

It takes a surprisingly long time to write 100 words, and it takes about 40 seconds to speak them out loud. That’s not very long. Yet I’ve spent hours and hours of my life in active and rapid colloquy. Leaning on bars, riding in cars, walking on sidewalks, sitting in chairs, hunkered over desks. Chattering, blathering, prattling, babbling. Millions and millions of words, and I can’t remember any of them. Well, probably there was a lot of “the” and “of.” Those are biggies right there. Also I seem to recall saying “No, no. Listen. Listen to me” quite a bit.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Geezer Wars!

Somebody asked me, “How old do you think I am?” I was both rude and prudent. I flatly refused to answer. “I’m not answering that,” I said. Isn’t there some age beyond which you got nothing left to prove? I guess not. I’m hearing now about people exchanging organ recitals; that’s where they try to top each other with their lists of the afflictions plaguing every single part of the body. So there’s always something to win at. I wonder if the second-oldest person in the world spends a lot of time checking the obituaries, hoping for that big break.

Monday, May 2, 2016

put out a tip jar

Worried about what’s happening to the American middle class? Maybe it’s a little late. Years ago, you might have checked for a union label before you picked up that six-pack of t-shirts. You could have voted yes on that school bond issue. But don’t beat yourself up about it, it’s just bad impulse control. It’s that moment when you realize you’ve filled up on bread. And there’s an obvious solution: Uber. I see a future where we survive entirely by driving each other around. But trust me. It’s not a gig economy until you’re told to enter through the kitchen.