Monday Morning  

Posted by Ray in

This morning when I picked up my car from the BWI Airport Daily Garage, it was covered with bird poop. The reason I park my new car in the garage is to keep it new and shiny, at least as long as I can afford the $10 a day parking charge. I did not expect to see bird poop all over the car. It so happened that I had actually parked right below a bird's nest - looks like they had a large family up there - probably had other families visiting them for the weekend. I couldn't open the door as the door handle was smothered in you know what. I had to get in the car through the front passenger side door. I took my car straight to the car wash and while waiting for all the bird poop to wash away, here is a couple of interesting things that I heard on the local radio station.

1. 1 Gallon of Gas - 5 cents
An 88 year old lady named Gladys was being interviewed and she mentioned that she remembers the time when a gallon of gas cost only a nickel. Now it is closing in on an amount that is 100 times more than the price that Gladys can remember. She also said how things have changed at the Gas Station. Now you have so many questions to answer at the gas pump. First you have to select the card type - debit or credit and in some cases a very annoying request for a zip code. Then you have to say if you need a receipt or not. Then you have to select the gas type - Regular, Plus, Supreme. You are not yet done. Do you need a car wash today? That is another question. And for folks who requested a receipt, you have the inconvenience of waiting for the receipt to print. At 88 years, Gladys says she hasn't much time left and she just wants to pump gas and not answer a bunch of questions. Who can blame her?

2. The American Economy
I heard this piece of news on NPR. The Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is cautiously upbeat about the economy.

Hmm...what is the meaning of being cautiously upbeat? Just a few weeks back Ben Bernanke was cautiously optimistic. So why was Bernanke cautiously optimistic and why is Paulson cautiously upbeat. What is the difference? There is no difference. As Ben Bernanke used the word
cautiously optimistic, the Treasury Secretary wanted to show his command over the English vocabulary. Now he has to say something that means nothing. He cannot use the word 'nothing' for it because people would easily understand it. At the same time he cannot repeat what Ben Bernanke said for that would render his office as redundant. A new term is coined and out it comes - cautiously upbeat.

Imagine Homer Simpson talking with the Treasury Secretary (or with Ben Bernanke)

Homer: um...Mr. Secretary (or Mr. Fed Chairman), are you concerned about the economy?
Secretary/ Fed Chairman: Ah...Homer...I'm cautiously upbeat (optimistic) and ....
Homer: Wohoooo!! (Homer runs out to get a donut)

This entry was posted on May 19, 2008 at Monday, May 19, 2008 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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