So far I’ve not been too excited about the coming electric vehicle “revolution.” The cars are smooth and fairly reliable, and they will carry a person comfortably from one place to another as long as those two places aren’t too far apart. Some of them will accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in around three seconds, which is a really useful characteristic for a car to have, especially with many more older drivers on the road whose reflexes may have slowed a bit. Put Grandpa at the wheel of a new Tesla, for instance, and if he gets a cramp in that right leg he can be going 100 mph before he hits that light pole in the parking lot at City Market.
But a vehicle is on the horizon that finally gets my pulse up a few beats. The Rivian pickup truck is the one. It is not a truck meant for serious work on a farm or at the workplace. No, no, there will be none of that. Manure will never touch its bed. It is meant for the well-heeled wanderer, to be used primarily for glamping. If you want to load it up with everything the price is somewhere north of $91,000.
It’s true that the truck can get to 60 mph in a hair over 3 seconds. It can tow 11,000 pounds. It can be configured to have 15 inches of ground clearance. It has a motor on each wheel, which adds up to a total of around 800 horsepower. It can drive through a river that is three feet deep. And to top it all, my friends, it can do this:
Now I admit that there are very few times in my life when I have wanted to do a “tank turn” as in the video. There were those two episodes when I found myself having taken a wrong turn and briefly going down the wrong direction on a busy highway where it would have been handy, but that’s about it.
So I don’t think that I’ll put my order in just yet. For instance, I would like the truck to go quite a bit farther than its 300 mile range before it runs out of electricity. And if they would knock $50,000 off the sticker price it would be a lot more attractive. But I think I may have finally found an electric vehicle that would fit the style in which I imagine myself living, that of the gentleman adventurer.
Followup photo of Robin in her PT outfit at the Mountain View Therapy center this week.
I think it’s quite stylish, but Robin vehemently disagrees. Whenever I suggest that she wear it out in public I get the look that says “Just shoot me first.”
From The New Yorker
We’ve now used up all of our Thanksgiving leftovers, so the day is officially behind us and we can go on to other things. It’s always painful when you look up from licking the last crumbs from the bowl that the decadent marshmallow-encrusted yams were served in and see the look on the face of your spouse which is “Who is this disgusting person?”
But crushed egos recover, as I know mine will, in time. And Robin really should be used to my habits by now if she was paying attention at all over the past 29 1/2 years. Perhaps when we were dating I concealed my tendency toward gluttony from her, but I’ve been open about it ever since. The telltale orange-stained fingertips indicating that an entire bag of Cheetos were now history, or the half-eaten ice cream carton that any knowledgeable archeologist can see was taken down to that point by a man with a spoon in his hand and no sense of decency at all. Oh, and how about that slice of turkey in the Tupperware container that is missing a chunk with a bite radius that exactly matches my own. These are among the telltale signs of a person not to be trusted with your edibles.
From The New Yorker
As recently as five years ago, I was taking no prescription medications. When friends would list the several drugs they were taking for this and that I admit that I thought to myself “Poor bastards, they have been afflicted, but I, for reasons quite unknown to me, have not. Perhaps it’s because I have lived such an exemplary and blameless life.”
Those thoughts have come back to haunt me now as I spend part of each morning and evening shoving chemicals down my gullet in order to preserve life and limb. That is, at least statistically because no sensible physician makes guarantees as they hand out prescriptions for the many tablets, caplets, capsules, and powders at their disposal.
At present I take one to calm down that sneaky blood pressure, one because the laboratory tells me that my lipids are slightly out of whack, and one aimed at reducing the likelihood of having another stroke. I also take one to calm my allergies down, a part of my immune system that continues to get more robust with time, while experts tell me that the rest of that same system is going all to hell (life does have a sense of humor).
So there is no more feeling superior to my contemporaries for me, as I am right in there in the pharmacy lines with everybody else, munching on yet another slice of humble pie.
Lastly, here is a short sketch from SNL that you might enjoy.
Jon: This has my nomination for the best Saturday Night Live sketch of the year.
Robin: I don’t know ’bout that.