Ah, George Peppard on The A Team: “I love it when a plan comes together.” That’s how I feel about my counsel to do nothing for a month except relax and think calm, beautiful thoughts. There is a limit to how many threats most of us can face and I was sure other unpleasant events would unfold, direct, indirect, and even unrelated. I was quite positive a great many silly and funny things would be said, as indeed is the case. A particular favorite is Japan’s plan to limit the dangers of high radiation levels: just change the rules. Instead of 100,000 units redefine the threat level to 200,000 and voila! the danger is halved. The third of the Four Little Pigs has held the trough out with a Dickensian “More, please.” We know the result of that one, too: Angela Merkel will pitch a fit–and geek. French President Sarcastic will say a great many unpleasant things in his nasal way–and geek. Hmmm…does that mean the only thing that will be holding the EU together is Spain? Spain is clearly holding up the simplest solution: if it will just get on with declaring bankruptcy, then every EU country can claim to be bankrupt, crash the Euro, and start over. As an added bonus Angela might even keep her job.
The British are rioting, holding “no cuts” signs (commercial ones, note), Wisconsin is under attack by the Feds, and the US House of Representatives may well declare yet another interim budget. Unless California slides obligingly into the sea it will be yowling for bail out funds, with another 45 states jumping on the bandwagon. C’mon, pols, decreeing something “too big to fail” is a null concept. It is not possible to be “too big” to do anything an entity has already accomplished. It looks to me as though towns, counties, cities, states, the US, the Federal Reserve, Congress, assorted wars, the UN, and the Treasury have already done so. We could liken this to a daft ceremony of deliberately having sex with someone who is in full blown AIDS so that the initiate no longer has to worry about being exposed to the disease. Oh…and about an hour ago, my time, another earthquake hit Japan–a 6.5, at least, not as powerful as the recent 8 on the Richter scale. Until a slump in the ocean floor can be observed and estimated, there is no way to predict the chances of another Tsunami–at least, unless the Japanese can unearth $900,000,000 of our bonds from the rubble and start cashing them in to defray expenses. This will increase the chances of crashing the dollar and cheer those who hope to replace the FRN with almost anything, although the Euro and Yen don’t sound like probable candidates. Just think what would have happened if you had rushed in and bought Yen or Japanese stocks!
For today’s amusement, shake your head and say, “Linda and her knack for buying what will become more valuable or back into vogue.” A lighthearted bit from Forbes discusses buying vintage luxury cars, and what do you suppose the classic of choice is? Why, what I have been collecting for quite some time. I still need one from the Seventies…or do I? I have trouble remembering, sometimes. Maybe it’s the Fifties. I’m certain I don’t have one from that decade, more’s the pity. Naturally, I do not own one later than the very early Nineties because abominations built by Ford do not count. I don’t worry about being “cool,” but I demand luxury and beauty and they all get at least 25 MPG which is quite good enough for such elegant ladies. The cars, that is, but me, too. Phoo on granola Lexus when I can travel 125 mph (road conditions [including lack of radar] permitting.) An SUV marked Cadillac or Lexus is a ludicrous sight, although not as idiotic as a Hummer. The only styling and originality modern vehicles show is tail lights. A very simple discriminator is that if it doesn’t have a hood ornament, it is mere transportation, and if it isn’t stick shift it may be luxury transportation but it isn’t any fun. I sneered mentally at someone driving a new Chevy Silverado Extended Cab he worries about scratching up. My ’88 bears at least a thousand scars from important jobs done well. I paid $1600 for it about ’04 and all it has needed since was new points and plugs. Back in the Eighties they still built vehicles that last against everything except human stupidity. One of the hands broke the driver’s side window recently–don’t even ask–and last summer more carelessness resulted in having to pull the rear end, but we can scarcely blame Chevy for idiots who wind over a quarter of a mile around the axle. I’m certain that isn’t covered in standard warranties–and we just had to pull a tractor apart for the same reason. Slow learners.
Recall a couple of weeks ago when some yahoo had the audacity to call me a liar, saying I don’t have a ranch and don’t even know which end of a cow milk comes out of? I contented myself at the time with informing him that milk doesn’t come out of the ends of cows, it comes out of four little dangly things between the hind legs, that being the end with the tail on it. I am trying–with spectacular lack of success–to learn how to get photos into my lap top and back out as attachments, but with luck you will see a couple featuring less than half of my horses. The one which includes part of the barn shows what my “gentle giant” did when a female who smelled right began coquetting upwind outside his stall. He renovated the barn to add his own private entrance. The other shows him chasing three recently-impregnated females and another mare. The attractive gentleman sitting on the Caterpillar is my darling Charles, and the 4th photo gets the top of two Jags and a few of the cows. With luck I’ll be able to add one of our miniature donkey and a hand bottle feeding a new goat. Another couple of weeks and the cast comes off from when he learned not to ride a green broke horse while carrying a cell ‘phone. Irish Brook came unglued and Clay came off a horse for the first time in many years.
Breaking your employees’ arms is not recommended, but admiring your preparations and possessions is for a couple of more weeks minimum because I suspect we’re riding a green broke economy with at least half a dozen very loud unusual noises set to go off. It would be fun to look at charts of Raytheon, Martin-Mariettta, General Dynamics, and Lockheed to see if you can spot a bargain. If you’ve got a hankering for some more Italian furniture now could be a good time to buy, since transportation costs are sure to go up and the Euro is likely to go through a dizzy spell. Hope you enjoyed seeing a very small part of what keeps me tied happily to my ranch.
Linda Brady Traynham,
for The Mesh Report