Good Ideas – February 17, 2021

But first – a word from our sponsors –

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Now to the business of “good ideas”

Some “good” ideas are simply stupid, ill-advised, or for obvious reasons never catch-on.  Some surely good ideas come and go despite the fact they are bang-up good ideas.  Many good ideas get the gaff when they don’t deserve it.  Finally, some “good” ideas never make the big time.  Some Good ideas are bad ideas. Here are a few “good ideas” that come immediately to mind.  I’ll leave judgments to you.  Audience participation.

One-way groceries

Stateside Wallymart had a good idea, an idea for which the time was right.  With all the pandemic pish-posh we’d witnessed over the last several months, it was a simple idea.  To facilitate1 maintaining six-foot social-distance practices, Wally-sociates made aisleways one-way. If that requires explanation, as Bill Engvall would say, “Here’s your sign.” 


Wallymart discovered it necessary to provide someone to read the signage on endcaps and the floors at the entrance to every aisle to customers.  America cannot read.2 Especially Senior Citizens3 and thirty- to forty-year-old women one would mistake for Elementary school teachers.This idea, COVID aside, remains a good one, if for no other reason than to encourage citizens3,4  to refrain from blocking shopping lanes.

Marriage licenses

A sage old coot once suggested to me marriage and divorce processes were upside-out, inside-down.  Marriage licenses cost you what, five bucks?  Costs a small fortune to get a divorce.  This coot reckoned if it cost say, five thousand dollars just to get a marriage license, righteous more thought would go into the decision.  Having made the mistake, if bailing cost only five dollars, sure there’d be an upswing in divorce but a lot fewer folk living in misery.  Maybe even a lot fewer children alternate week-ending.

Warrants consideration.

The old coot (not me, by the way) spoke from the experience of two marriages and two divorces.  Over a beer or two he could lay out many more arguments.

Nash Metropolitan

Manufactured in England.  Subcompact by today’s standard.  Around thirty miles per gallon give or take when most (American) autos were doing fifteen to twenty mpg.  To many people between the mid (nineteen) fifties to the early sixties, it was ugly and even laughable.  Today it would be the cat’s ass.

I’m left to wonder, had American Motors not faded away, had the Nash/Hudson Metropolitan stayed on the market with restyling over the years, would it not be as trendy as the now off-and-on rave-popular Mini Cooper?

Original.  I mean the first subcompact convertible on the American market? 

For my money, every bit as much the classic as the 54-57, 60-65, and 69 Chevys.

Good idea, that. Bring it back.  Electric or atomic, I don’t care.  I’m headed to the dealership now.

Oh.  Don’t update the body style.  Gimme the old squatish ’55 Chevy look.  I’ve got spare wheelbarrow wheels I can probably reuse after I wear out the factory set.

Lead-free, sugar-free, gluten-free

Always end-up with this question.  How can you put less of anything in something and end up with a more expensive product?  My first musings on this when lead-free gasoline came out.  Always in the olden days cost more at the pump. Eventually got to be where lead-free was almost exclusive. Not sure you can even buy leaded gas anymore.  Ethanol-free, sure.  Anti-knock agent free?  Dunno.  

Over the years, I’ve almost been convinced it makes sense. Still rankles.

Then there’s salt-fee, sugar-free, artificial-sweetener-free, sodium and gluten free.  To say nothing of lo-cal, no-cal, and the rest, which I grant outside argument parameters.  Allow as gluten-free is probably legitimate.  But salt, sugar, and artificial sweetener free? Low-sodium?  No “added” sugars or sodium?

Tell you what.  Go to a real honest-to-goodness meat market to buy sausage – nitrate, nitrite, salt and sugar-free. Be prepared to spend some large.  Unh.  Left some things out.  Missing. Not there. Didn’t have to pay for them to toss them in the hopper.  What gives?



Animal products.  Meat.  Probably eggs, but I’m not up on the social-ecology-science of that one.  Milk, which then includes cheese, butter, ice cream and so on.5  Unfair to the animals.  Bad for your health.  Bad for the environment.  Evil.  Irresponsible. Immoral.

Okay.  For the sake of argument, Imma grant that.  So long as you understand, just for the sake of argument.

How is it pretend meat, plant-based meat, or more accurately plant-derived protein, or meat substitute actually is more expensive than the real Magilla? 

That is a bad idea.  Dumb or crooked, anyway.  Here’ my reasoning.

You grow the plants. That’s a given, either way, meat or pretend-meat. Now, for veggie-meats, you don’t store crops, and don’t process, and enrich and feed them to animals.  You don’t care for the animals.  You don’t transport the animals to processing.  You don’t process the animals, deal with processing by-products.

Look at all the steps you cut out.  Eliminated. Costs forgone. Yet you put that cronk in the “meat cases” in markets with prices equal to and in many cases more than quality animal products.  What’s up with that?

Excuse me.  I’m going to the butcher.  Bone-in Ribeye on sale today.  Still cheaper than It’s Not Meat!

— Notes —

1 Lawsy, how I hate that word.  Almost as much as ‘impact’ on the Six O-Clock News where the perfectly coiffed twit pronounces “The Governor’s office declares passing the new AWD-sponsored mandate requiring braille on all roadway signage would have a profound impact on efforts to reduce roadway mishaps.” 

2 I don’t know about more mature countries like England, Scotland, Ireland, Lower Barnstable, Spain, Alabama, California, France, and so on.

3 I remind everyone I am a Senior Citizen and absolutely mortified by my generation.  From the time I learned to read, scant moments before graduating high school, and most of my life thereafter, I thought people of my generation could read, knew better than to run around in public in baggy, dirty sweatpants and tee shirts, bathed regularly, and would never try to pass off the one-pound miniature something or other in their fanny pack as a service animal.  (Also a “Fail” this service-animal, emotional-support-animal bongo-spritz.)

4 Made a mistake in a one-way aisle store one day.  Asked the mask over-mouth-but-not-over-nose woman, I guess in her mid-thirties if she would like me to explain the “Do not enter this side” markings emblazoned on the floor at a local retailer. I am expert at icy cold stares but this lady put me to shame.  She was indignant and expressed belief in some uncomplimentary facts of my parentage. Apparently, such as one-way aisles, “Wait here for next available cashier,” “Please limit your transactions to three for each visit to the window,” and signs prohibiting smoking at the pump while you fill your Beemer at the local Gas-M-Up on Broadway are against the law, to say nothing of violating basic American freedoms. (I did not mention the cavalier chic way she wore her mask.)

5 Yes, and leather, and fur, and what else I don’t know, but someone will likely tell me.

Published by spwilcen

Retired career IT software engineer, or as we were called in the old days, programmer, it's time to empty my file cabinet of all the "creative" writing accumulated over the years - toss most of it, salvage and publish what is worthwhile.

11 thoughts on “Good Ideas – February 17, 2021

  1. Wow! You’ve posted some smashing ideas SP! And clarified many mysteries like “organic” and “sugar-free”, concepts I always reckoned left the door open for lies and fraud. I say that the ultimate responsibility falls upon the individual. If we don’t learn to think for ourselves, protect ourselves, teach ourselves, we’ll always be depending upon some bloke telling us what we should eat, what is good for us and which way we should walk inside a store. Great post my friend and all the best to you,

    1. Good morning. Thank you for taking time to chat. Tempted to say something “deep” like “Life is a Fraud” but I don’t believe it. I’m having too much fun! As are you, I see. Do great things today.

      1. You are right. Life should be taken seriously but at the same time lightly, like saying trust every one but expect the unexpected or I’m an atheist and a God knows it or, finally, laugh your troubles away. Not everyone is there. Anyways, yes, you do great things my friend. Weather here is a trifle cooler than yesterday but nice, considering the weather in your neck of the woods. Hope you fare well my friend.

  2. I still fail to get my head round why people who don’t actually eat meat (for whatever reason) want to buy products that look and taste like the stuff.
    Good post btw, of which my abiding image is trying to pickle an elephant in brine!

    1. Excellent point. Boss made some “not meat” at home based on a magic spell she got from one of her friends – mostly beans. Now, I really like meat, “Mr. Carne,” and I really like beans of all sorts in all ways, but Imma tellya that stuff was the best of the worst of both. In fits of “conscience” we’ve tried the commercial stuff, which came across like scrapings from the real butcher’s sawdust-covered floor. At a pretty penny too! WhodabigF do these conglomerate twits think they are fooling? I want beans and grass, I eat beans and salad or proud veggies; when Iwant meat, Imma eat meat! Thanks for the chat. Looking Ford to seein what the Hobb has this morning, so pressing-on.

      1. With you one hundred percent on this one. I love veggie food, some of it is really tasty, but when I want meat, well, I’m sorry, but pass me that cow!

  3. Nice. Accurate. I like being able to buy 8 “regular” somethings for $1.98 when others are buying 4 “New and improved” (meaning new packaging) for $3.50. Happens all the time at COSTCO. Have a great day!

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