Saturday, May 08, 2004

It's amazing what the human body can do, isn't it? People who can dive over 500 feet on a single breath, go for a mile-long swim in Antarctica or climb into the rarified air of Mt. Everest without oxygen! Incredible!

My question is Why? Why would anyone ever want to try any of those things? And how did you find out you could do them? Sounds like these feats started out as a drunken dare in college. Moreover, once you figure out you can pull off something like climbing Everest without oxygen, why would you go and do it again? This guy's climbed it 5 times, plus 12 other peaks! Did you get the part about the strongman's regimen? "Training 12 hours a week and putting away 25 pounds of beef and 14 supplement shakes every seven days." Gross! I can't imagine being willing to choke down that much cow and protein sludge just to be able to pick a wad of lead. And I barely want to do something that feels good for 12 hours a week, let alone pumping iron and tearing ligaments!

And it's not as if these are useful talents or anything. I might be more impressed by the guy who climbed the mountain to look for the cure for cancer, or who swam to Antarctica to rescue a stranded lifeboat crew. But these folks accomplishments are the athletic equivalent of being the trivia champion. I guess that's ok, but who cares?

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Terrific! The service industry is growing! This means more jobs are available for the unemployed public!

But what does it really boil down to? If the service industry is growing, then what collateral shrinkage in the jobs market is occuring? Well, now that we have more positions available for waiters, hotel porters, check-out girls, bartenders and delivery people, those jobs will have to be filled by fresh college graduates or those who have been downsized right out of their professional career .

Yes, all those years of work, studying and brown-nosing will reap their huge reward when you get that coveted job at the grill in the Chik-Fil-A in the mall! Just think of all those $1 tips you'll rake in hauling luggage up to hotel rooms (which, incidentally, are being rented by your former co-workers on all-expense-paid junkets). And just imagine the stimulating conversations you'll have with your co-workers! In addition to other college grads bitching about their lot in life, you'll work side by side with the unskilled and uneducated working hard to get enough money to buy their next crack rock or bling-bling accessory for their baby-daddy!

America! Land of opportunity!

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Mid-air meditation? An interesting idea. Especially in the wonderful world up in the sky, a little tranquility and peace would be a welcome relief from the unrelenting hassles of squashed seats, late landings, lost luggage and surly stewardesses. Maybe more airlines should offer such appointments.

My concern comes from the vehemence with which the unnamed Air Sahara official extols this service. He says, "believe you me, those who are meditating will become completely oblivious of what the passenger on the next seat is doing.” I'm not sure that while traveling in buzz tube 35,000 feet up I want to be that unaware of what's going on around me. What if I'm so lost in my inner Nirvana that I'm unable to open the emergency exit? Besides, what anesthetic gasses are they pumping in to guarantee this bliss?

And what about the other passengers who may not want to participate? All the meditators may find their peaceful place, but what if it drives some borderline personality disorder passenger over the edge and he gets all psycho over the chanting and lotus positions? I'm not sure that Air Sahara thought this idea through all the way.