Gee, that cat might really be dead!

Recession

Perhaps this[1] will focus some politicians’ minds. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down nearly 1,900 points for reasons[2] that should be utterly unsurprising.[3]

Rachel Siegel, Thomas Heath, and Jeff Stein, “Dow slides more than 1,800 points on fears of coronavirus resurgence, more economic pain,” Washington Post, June 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/06/11/markets-today-fed-coronavirus/


Pittsburgh

Unusually for me, I actually managed an early morning grocery shopping trip. On the way to, I noticed a pair of turkeys walking unusually slowly across the road. This was of little concern to me as I was turning onto another road before them. Then, just as I was making the turn, I noticed, between them, there was a chick, hardly able to keep up with an adult gait. They were hovering protectively.

On the way back, I noticed a pickup truck in front of me had a rear view mirror, not of the usual sort, but rather a video screen (its brightness exceeded that of ambient light), fed from a camera—I was eventually able to discern—in the third brake light assembly.

The advantages are readily apparent: Such a system should be able to compensate for low light and to mute assholes with high beams.

But I also felt less visible, even in my mid-size car, a Toyota Camry Hybrid. Which suggests that my next car should be higher profile.

That also implies a larger car, which would terrify me on a ludicrously narrow street like Rialto, and which would be even harder to fit in a garage like the one I now rent. In Pittsburgh, a Prius might be better.

The decision is always on my mind anyway because being unable to find a real job,[4] I rely on my car for my livelihood, but also this has been an expensive year for my car, 36¢ per mile so far versus an average over the last several years of 27¢ and a previous annual high in 2018 of 29¢ (not counting depreciation, which I really don’t know how to calculate). That’s an eye-catching difference that includes some unexpected front end work and some not-so-surprising tires. But I’m really hoping I don’t need to make the decision soon.

I had a passenger this afternoon who confessed to me that, though she had lived in several places in the world, driving in Pittsburgh is the worst. She said she and her fiancé are instantly in road rage from the moment they get in their car. All I can say is I’m way past that here, at least for the most part. It really is awful, though.

So I reached the end of the day, and really needing to hit a restroom, I stopped at a Sheetz (a chain of convenience/gas stores; these, GetGos, and Speedways can be relied on for restrooms if they’re of any size—other gas stations and convenience stores can generally be relied on not to have restrooms), I think in Harmar Township. I think I was the only person inside wearing a mask. The checkout line extended beyond where they had marked six foot separations, and people crowded behind me.

When I got home and walked out of my garage, I could see down to a softball field past the Baldwin Library. There was a game going on, with the players in uniform, suggesting this was an organized event. None were social distancing unless they were out in positions on the field.


  1. [1]Rachel Siegel, Thomas Heath, and Jeff Stein, “Dow slides more than 1,800 points on fears of coronavirus resurgence, more economic pain,” Washington Post, June 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/06/11/markets-today-fed-coronavirus/
  2. [2]Rachel Siegel, Thomas Heath, and Jeff Stein, “Dow slides more than 1,800 points on fears of coronavirus resurgence, more economic pain,” Washington Post, June 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/06/11/markets-today-fed-coronavirus/
  3. [3]David Benfell, “Dead cat bounce,” Not Housebroken, June 6, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/06/06/dead-cat-bounce/
  4. [4]David Benfell, “About my job hunt,” Not Housebroken, n.d., https://disunitedstates.org/about-my-job-hunt/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.