Pop! Goes the Bubble

On my subway ride into work this morning, two techies sat behind me. It turned out they were friends from a former company and they began to catch-up.

The talker worked in sales. The other must have been a programmer. He was quieter.

The talker recounted his recent trip to Vegas with his boss. They played and drank and crashed a club with a bachelorette party they met at an expensive restaurant. The talker flirted with the women, but nothing came of it.

Then the topic switched to money and salaries and wives and children. Wives? What’s this talker doing in Vegas playing with girls at a club? From the conversation, both men were frustrated by their wives. The quieter one didn’t appreciate his wife’s online spending habits.

“Every day a new package shows up at the front door,” he said.

“Tell your wife to get a job,” the talker said.

“I do, but she doesn’t do anything about it,” the programmer said. “She sleeps until noon, then gets online and spends money.”

“I wouldn’t let her do that. She needs to find a real job and bring in some money,” the talker said.

Then they talked about the price of housing and how important it is to live where it’s cheap and not compete with the younger set living in the city.

“They pay $4,000 a month!” the talker said.

“For a two-bedroom condo?” the programmer asked.  Bursting bubble

“Yes! It’s crazy!”

“They must be making crazy salaries,” the programmer said.

“No, they live four to a condo, that’s how it’s done,” the talker said.

“Do you think the housing bubble will last this time?”

“Sure it will. This is Silicon Valley.”

These guys must have stepped off another planet. Or were too young to experience the housing meltdown of the early 2007’s.

And we trust these guys with our social media? Yikes!

Calvin says, “My bubble bursts all the time. Like last night when you didn’t toss me some of your steak.”  beagle

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m a Material Girl

It’s countdown to Christmas. Yes, I’m using the word Christmas.

The stores are twinkling with lights.

The bell ringers are waving. Ringing is against the law now.

That was one of the sounds of Christmas that just departed. photo(161)

The beggars are begging, the singers are singing, and the fiddlers are fiddling.

I wonder what they’ll outlaw next.

But the shoppers aren’t shopping. They’re just looking. And buying online.

That’s what I did this year.

It made it so much simpler. But boring.

I go into overdrive when pushing into a mob of women to get to the cosmetic counter.  Or ripping a pair of shoes out of another woman’s hands and buying them. The word glee comes to mind.

Let’s not forget the parking lot assaults for a parking space. That’s all out war.

And the juggling of bags, boxes and purses draped from your arms and shoulders that make you look like a shopping cart without wheels.

It’s the sights and sounds of Christmas.

It’s the festive delights of materialism.

Don’t go shopping without it.

Calvin says, “Christmas shopping. Just the thought makes me want to snarl my teeth and bite a Santa leg.” beagle

The Perfect Halloween Dessert

There’s a new ice cream shop down the block from where I work.

It’s one of those pop-up stores, the kind that appear overnight out of nowhere.

The store used to be a shipping container. It’s been recycled to house a counter, some odd-looking machinery, a menu board, and a couple of servers.

Four unique flavors of ice cream are posted every day.

For example,  Apple-Quince Streusel,  Strawberry with White Balsamic, Earl Grey with Milk Chocolate Chips. 

Making a choice takes time because all the flavors beckon you and they all sound luscious.

However, you’re forced to choose at least one and stick with it because there’s no sampling of the other flavors. That’s because the ice cream is made on the spot in front of you in less than 60 seconds.

It a ghoulish affair with special effects. Perfect for Halloween.

The recipe of your flavor is poured into a metal receptacle, which is then attached to a mixer with fierce-looking handles.

Then the fun starts. The server puts a lid on the container, turns on the mixer, and in an instant it’s swallowed in swirling fog.

Very apt for San Francisco.

What it is is liquid nitrogen. It’s used to churn the mixture into ice cream.

Hmm.

That’s my ice cream in there.

Sixty seconds later, you’re presented with two scoops in a cup.

You’ve never tasted anything like it.

The flavors are a taste sensation in your mouth and an adventure your palate won’t soon forget.

And you’ll be back the next day for more.

Liquid nitrogen and all.

Calvin says, “What would churned kibble in liquid nitrogen taste like? Forget I asked. My taste buds don’t want to know.” 

Not Quite

Teddie tried not to be noticed, but he was the odd bear in the box. The rest of his siblings were white. A little boy yanked him out, inspected him, threw him on the floor and ran away. That’s when I saw Mama psycho-consumer speed by on the way to the beef jerky with her cart. Teddie saw her, too, scrambled to his feet, and hurled himself into the box like a high jumper in the Olympics. He made it just in time before he became road kill and sample meat for the food demonstrators across the aisle. His siblings were no help. He wanted to bury himself deep in the box and recuperate from his harrowing experience, but they didn’t even twitch a paw. They needed their space, they said.

Calvin says, “I would have squirmed and wiggled down to the bottom of the box and tossed a few of the white boys overboard.”