Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Current State of Affairs

Man jumps off building after an Italian dinner

Gadabout enjoyed dinner out with friends this past Friday and Saturday evenings. Both venues were Italian, and both served up above average fare. There was one unique difference between the two that is noteworthy, though. That difference was that Saturday night was twice as expensive as Friday night.

Friday night’s dinner was just Gadabout and a friend. Beer and wine was involved and the tab totaled $55 including tax and a 21% tip (the service was exceptional…thanks, Zia’s). Saturday’s meal was a bit more complicated. Our party consisted of 6 adults and 4 children (thank you for setting up 2 separate tables and supplying pizza dough to entertain the ADD afflicted miniature people). Gadabout ate light and consumed one beer and two glasses of wine, so I am guessing I was roughly carrying a 0.04 BAC at the end of the meal. The bill for the slightly above average chow totaled $386 (tax and 20% tip included). Do the Math.

My point is that Americans toss cash into the air like confetti at a Super Bowl parade. Just in dinners, Gadabout tosses at least $5,000 out the window for slightly above average meals each and every year. Now remember, this $5,000 is after tax income and only includes weekend expenditures – not pizzas and other food purchases during the week!

Americans love to consume, and consume we do. We consume at the movie theater where we spend $40 dollars for two tickets, popcorn, diet Cokes and nachos. A 42 inch LCD? Sold! A new Lazy Boy? Sold! Tickets to the ballgame? Sold! A week in Aspen? Sold! A new Escalade? Sold! $4,000 to paint the home interior? Sold!

Americans are in debt. Debt produces anxiety in relationships that often leads to divorce. Divorces can cost mucho dollars, leading to more debt and anger. Anger towards others causes health problems and lost productivity and reduced incomes. Reduced income and spiraling debt is a shiny pathway to bankruptcy. Bankruptcy causes people to jump off tall buildings and splat themselves onto unforgiving concrete surfaces at an acceleration rate of 32 ft/sec2 (remember, Gadabout has a Masters Degree in Science).

In short, Italian dinners lead to gruesome deaths where Americans hit the pavement at a velocity of 300 feet/second. Splat! The End.

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