Sunday, March 16, 2014


A few weeks ago I stuck in the 210 Freeway logjam on the way home from work when I spied a white BMW that had this sign taped over its license plate: 


I did a double-take. This wasn't a new car just off a dealer's lot, this was clearly a used car, albeit in nice condition with some custom rims. 

I managed to pull alongside to see who was driving.  It was some white guy on the younger side of middle-aged and he didn't look like he was on drugs or anything.  Beside him was a female passenger. I also managed to pull ahead of him and saw that he had a matching plate on the front of his car.

Maybe if California ever needs to balance its budget again they can offer "Private" plates for an additional fee, like they do with personalized plates.  Maybe this practice would spread to other things, like private drivers licenses or private credit cards.  People could decline to have their picture on their license or passport for an extra fee and in its place would be like what you see on Facebook or Linked In when the account holder hasn't uploaded a picture.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

trifling matters

Yesterday one of Amazon's Gold Box deals was something I'd never heard of: a watch winder. Normally $266, it was on sale for a limited time for only $149 and selling quickly.  I had to look.

There it was, and apparently for real, although I have to say I was wondering if this was a gag listing.  A machine to wind your watch?  Why would anyone need a machine to wind a watch? Just wind it yourself!

Some research informed me that self-winding watches, if not kept in motion to be kinetically wound, will wind down and then require resetting. Some people have multiple watches and thus need to make sure that all of them receive enough motion to stay wound, which is what this watch winding box machine does.

Now, the item on sale was for a single watch so that sort of goes against its use for people who own multiple watches.

Wow, there are people who have machines to keep their watches wound.  Amazing. I guess if you are an executive on the go, you just don't have time to make sure your watch(s) are wound.   I imagine these machines are for the rich and famous; people who don't have time to deal with trivial stuff like keeping a watch wound.

That reminded me of long ago, just starting out career-wise, going to Dorman Winthrop's on La Cienega Boulevard to purchase dress shirts. I noticed they had no pockets. What kind of cheap shirts were these??? I asked the salesman why they had no pockets and was informed that executives and other rich folks, presumably the types who would wear these shirts, did not have to deal with trivial matters like putting trivial things in their pockets.  They had other people who handled stuff like that for them.

By the same token, maybe watches for the rich and famous shouldn't need a second hand, or for that matter, a minute hand either.  Why should they have to deal with such trivia as seconds and minutes?  An hour hand ought to be sufficient. As they incrementally remove each time-indicating element, the price of the watch goes up, same as how you pay extra to have them take the salt out of that can of soup to make it healthier.

Well heck, the ultimate display of rich and famous-osity would be to not even wear a watch.  You are at a level in which you don't need to deal with time; others deal with it for you.

Someone asked me if they take the pockets off of men's shirts, why don't they take the pockets off the pants, too?  I suppose because that would make the pants look like they were made for girly-men.