Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night...

...nor spell check, nor common sense, nor...

I took this picture today at the Post Office in East Bay in Provo with my phone camera (hence the kind of crappy quality - sorry):

Two things. First, I don't know what a "Guaranted Delivery" is, but I sure as hell ain't payin' no $16.25 for it. Oops, $16.25 is the starting price. I can only imagine how much you'd have to throw down for some "Nxt Daye" service. Our tax dollars at work, baby!

But wait! On further thought, it all makes total sense now. I guess I can forgive them one little typo. Think about it...the Post Office isn't just an expensive D.I. alternative to rid yourself of your annoying packages. They actually have a plan in place to deliver them to the address you wrote in bold letters on the front. In fact, they guarantee it!

How do UPS and FedEx compete with such mind-blowing performance?

Friday, July 20, 2007

The REAL Maverik Monster

Maverik has this stupid ongoing promotion about some supposed monster running around doing I don't know what. This guy:

If a descendant of Bob Marley, Mr. Spock and Predator had a kid with Smurfette...and then you mixed in some wicked-cool shades, you'd have yourself something very close to Mav's monster. Now, I believe I go to the Maverik just about as often as anyone, and I've never seen it. I don't know anything about it, except that it won't seem to go away. Hey Maverik, what does your stupid fictional monster have to with my craving for a JalapeƱo and Cheese Bahama Mama, or perhaps a $1.99 hoagie from Leopold's Deli with all the fixin's, anyway? I'll tell you what. Nothing.

But the Predasmurf is not even the point of this entry. :) You've got a monster alright, Maverik. It's that heinously disgusting place in the back you pass off for the men's restroom. Gross! GROSS!! And when I think a bathroom is gross, trust me you have a problem.

How does a bathroom even get like that? It seems like if you did absolutely nothing to it from the day that building was constructed, it still would only be half as bad as it currently is. I would venture to say there are some new compounds growing in there that science has yet to identify. How many bathrooms do you suppose there are where you actually increase the amount of bacteria on your person after attempting to wash your hands?


But don't worry, North Springville Maverik. You keep putting those 12-packs of Diet. Dew in the cooler and I'll see ya in the morning. :)

Monday, July 09, 2007

A "Titanic" Oversight

Every week, especially during the summer, you constantly hear in the news about how the latest blockbuster movie just broke a bunch of box-office records. They've made up some real doozies, too, just so they can report on them being broken. For example, "Movies that never hit #1", "Second Weekend", "Theater Drops", "Widest Indies", etc.

But that they have all these uninteresting stats they've made up to report on is not what bothers me. Nay, they can slice and dice, and then re-slice and report until the cows come home. What my gripe is this entry is their apparently cavalier attitude towards what I feel is a HUGE factor in all this movie money bean counting. And that is adjusting the totals for inflation. Or more accurately, neglecting to do so.

The studios must think that if they report a movie as having broken some money record, that will stir people up and instill in them the desire to go out and see it. You know, see what all the "fuss" is about. And they are probably right. But it doesn't change the fact that, over many decades of movies, this endless parade of new broken records is completely and totally meaningless when you don't adjust for inflation.

One way to think about it...a dollar was worth much more in, say, 1977 (the year Star Wars was released), than it is now. So to directly compare it with the dollars that Spiderman 3 just made, which is precisely what they do, is mathematically retarded. Put another way...think about what a movie ticket cost in 1977. Probably on the order of $2. The last movie I went to, 30 years later (2007), was $8. These poor older movies don't stand a chance.

The purported king of the movies, in terms of box office total, of course, is Titanic. But if you adjust for inflation, which you must do, Titanic places at a much less impressive 6th place, all time. Sorry Titanic, you lose! You're not even the king of 5th place, much less the world. :) All hail the true king of movie revenue, Gone with the Wind (1939), with an adjusted dollar total (2007) of no less than $1.3 billion dollars....compared to Titanic's paltry $844 million. And to round out the top 5, we have Star Wars at #2 ($1.17 billion), The Sound of Music at #3 ($937 million), E.T at #4 ($933 million), and The Ten Commandments at #5 ($861 million).

The next time you're listening to the entertainment news and they break out with "Spiderman 4 just broke the record for the most earned during a full moon in a spring month"...I want you to remember this post. :)