Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Speaker To The Silly

...Only not speaking so very much. Ever have one of those conversations where your best course is to find noncommittal platitudes to utter 'cos the only possible alternative is FLAME ON?

Hookay. So, yrs. trly., girl oxyacetylene torch, had bicycled herself to the market. 'cos A) I like riding, B) I kinda need the exercise and this is low-impact and C) it's like six blocks: only a total weenie or a very feeble person would drive it in good weather.

Parked the Large Bike With Large Baskets in the rack at the market next to a couple of newer, fancier bikes, locked it, went in, purchased a wide variety of staggeringly delightful things to eat and drink* and reemerged. While I was packing the bike, a nice young couple walked up bearing bags and Styrofoam containers from one of the nearby eateries -- nearby, but not in that parking lot.
She, to her fella: "Oh, cool, she's got baskets!" To me: "Those work out so much better for things like this" (gestures with bag o' food) "than our backpacks."
I agree and point out the weight's carried lower in a basket than on one's back, which puzzles her but she smiles and replies, "Don't you just feel so greeeen on a bike?"
Me: (with a dire sense of this-is-where-it-goes-all-pear-shaped) "Unh, yes. And healthy," (the last word delivered with an idiot grin.
She, mounting her bike: "Oh, there is that, too, I guess. But it's so good for the planet!"
Me: (Shiny, happy, must-not-lecture smile).
He: "Stickin' it to the Man!"
Me: (Rides away, rapidly, trying not to snicker).

No, son, you are not. And Miss lady? If you have a car, too, you are less green when you add a bike -- or did you think your bicycle was grown in a garden instead of hammered together in a Chinese factory the mere sight of which would curdle your hair? --The Man made a fine profit on your bikes, over and above what you paid for your car, while your gasoline usage for a trip to one of Broad Ripple's many dining establishments is not a drop in the ocean. The Man has done stuck you -- and he's struck your brains clean out, as near as I can tell.

Of course, if I'd've told the poor dears that, they'd've been all miffed and sniffy an' called me a mean ol' buzzkiller. It's not actually about "sticking it to the Man" or being "green," it's about their precious feelings. $DEITY help us, these are the folks I'll have to depend on when I am old and feeble. If you are what you eat, let's hope they never become Soylent Green and pass the infection on.

Update: Look here: "The Man" is what makes your nice life of shiny bicycles and take-out food in disposable, planet-killing containers possible. Sticking it to the Man is peeing in your own punchbowl.
* Including, of all things, Moxie, pretty much the oldest carbonated (I've been rightly taken to task here: add non-alcoholic and see next para.) beverage still being produced and most wondrous strange and tasty.

Update: ...Yes, it is true, beer is totally not on my horizon -- it just doesn't even occur to me, despite a roomie who keeps the fridge door pretty much full of longneck bottles of fine India Pale Ales. This why we get along: Tam's beer is safe around me.

Most amusing of all? Moxie has a bitter, almost hoppy finish.


Somerled said...

If you see them toting polystyrene boxes again, tell them that is very ungreen because it is made up of a bevy of petroleum-derived chemicals, many that pose health risks to humans and animals. That is just the tip of the green iceberg.


Then maybe they will leave you, go home, and flog themselves with rolled-up copies of "Sierra" and "Plenty" magazines they forgot to recycle.

New Jovian Thunderbolt said...

Yeah! STICK it to the MAN!

Wait a minnit. I am the Man. Stick it to me? Oh dear...

Do me a favor, Roberta. If you see them again, look at them askance for me. Not when they are noticing necessarily. A sideways suspicious glance that they don't notice? THAT'LL show em.

Anonymous said...

Roberta, beer would be the oldest carbonated beverage still being produced. Not trying to take away from teh coolness factor of Moxie, which might be the oldest non-alcoholic, carbonated beverage still being produced.

(For those unaware, CO2 is a byproduct of yeast digestion, which is still used to carbonate some beers. Oh, and yes I too get confused about how fermentation can be labelled as NOT green due to the carbon release when it is just controlled rotting, well spoilage really.)

BobG said...

I get a laugh out of the people I see who drive all the way from California to southern Utah to ride their bicycles in the canyons, and cause accidents in town from irresponsible biking, and then brag about how green they are, and environmentally conscious. I have no problem with bicycles or conscientious riders, just the idiots that one finds perched upon them sometimes.

Anonymous said...

"The Man"? Who is this "Man"? I have never actually seen this person, nor heard him say anything, but certain types of folks seem to have a definite idea of who "The Man" is.

{Could it be...that he is related to the infamous "Sumdood"????}

Oh, and I always thought Moxie was a blogger. But I don't think she is carbonated. LOL

Anonymous said...

Good lord.

Y'all are more patient than me. I tend to just hogtie them and leave them in the street.

Anonymous said...

Is "Speaker to the Silly" a reference to "Speaker to Animals" in Ringworld?

Cowboy Blob said...

MMmmmm, Moxie! I've heard some folks say that Moxie was medicine-flavored. Those ignorant folks didn't know that Moxie is so old that Medicine is Moxie-flavored!

Anonymous said...

When I catch who's been sticking it to me, they're going to regret it.

Roberta X said...

The Man: if you're not noticing them in the act, does it even count?

Joseph: yep. Silly humans!

Og: so you're the one does that? Do you know what that's doing to the wheels of my car? Sure, it's funny but sooooo messy.

Cowboy: Yup!

...Bob G for the win, with a fine example of ijits in action!

Jay G said...

People like these are the reason wedgies were invented.

Oh, and the four pound sledge...

RevGreg said...

Ahh...Moxie! You're lucky to be have found a location to purchase it at. Of course, I only I have to drive about 6 miles to go to Catawissa Bottling which is a major producer of Moxie (and their "Big Ben's Blue Birch Beer" is a local icon) which makes it available but it isn't even common in stores even around here and you have to take your own into the bar if you want to drink a "Mad Mailman" (Moxie and Jagermeister.)

Click for Pic

Above link is a piccy of a Moxie bottle I got at an auction...the bottler is "Dietz & Ricketts - Danville, Penna." which is the town I grew up in...I have since collected some other "Dietz & Ricketts" bottles and the later "Dietz & Sons" bottles but I have yet to find a way to accurately date the Moxie bottle...indications are that it is pre-1930. Damned bottle got me into collecting "local interest" bottles...like I needed another destination for my money!

Old NFO said...

hehehe... the SAD part is they actually believe that crap...

Anonymous said...

Roberta: Yes it does, because I'm the Man.

Anonymous said...

Worked once for one of the largest pension funds in the world. Co-worker was railing on Bush and big business. When I asked him who he thought he worked for, he went apoplectic. I was afraid he'd have a stroke, so I went off and had a Dr. Pepper. No Moxie in the machine, alas. OldeForce