August 18, 2006

Mahwah, New Jersey.

Earl and I are en route to a family picnic in his hometown near Philadelphia. We decided to take the scenic route by following the Delaware River through southern New York. Fellow roadgeek Nathan Perry has a better description of the drive than I could ever write up, so feel free to visit his site and take a peek.

Earl decided he’d had enough in the Jeep when we got outside of New York, so I jumped off the Thruway and headed into New Jersey, stopping at the first suggestion of a hotel. So tonight, we’re in Mahwah, New Jersey.

I’m not a fan of New Jersey, so I don’t know if there’s much more to say about Mahwah. Maybe daylight will help.

The Back of the BSA.

Driving home from work just now I followed a motorcycle up the street before jumping on the expressway. There’s a few lights between work and the on-ramp and this motorcycle didn’t try running the lights at all, the rider followed all the rules of the road to the letter.

He looked to be in his late 20s, muscular arms, wearing a pair of jeans, a t-shirt and an open faced helmet. He had a passenger, a young boy, presumably between eight and 10 years old. The boy had his arms wrapped around his dad, and hung on to him tightly as he displayed the utmost confidence in being a passenger on that motorcycle.

I was reminded of me being that boy thirty years ago, with my arms wrapped around my dad and with all the confidence in the world as we rode through the tiny village on his ’69 BSA.

It’s good to be reminded of those little things.

Lunacy: Sponsored By Mundanox.

Every day I have another reason to believe that the world has completely lost its mind. Today is no exception. This is really old news that I was just made aware of, but the fine folks at Ford now recommend a particular brand of gas for their vehicles. This recommendation is made by emblazoning the gas cap with the said oil company’s brand colors and a recommendation statement from Ford emprinted on the gas cap.

Detroit, we have a problem.

If I were to own a 2006 Ford Focus, I would be going against the manufacturer’s recommendation for my fuel needs because it would be at least 150 miles in any given direction to get this brand of fuel.

Now that puts the “convenience” in convenience store.

Why does Ford feel that they have to recommend a particular brand of gasoline to their customers? Do they really recommend this brand or are they getting paid lots of money to recommend this brand? What makes it better? Are they encouraging their customers to shun the local Mom and Pop store down the street in favor of this huge oil corporation simply for the sake of sponsorship money? Gag me a dipstick.

Marketing and commercials have become entirely out of control. I can’t get onto ebay now without a popup asking me if I want an ebay credit card. Dude, I just want to browse and waste some money on some junk. You can’t watch a movie in a theatre without being bombarded with commercials for up to 45 minutes before the previews even start. Attractions at the State Fair are all sponsored: “Welcome to the Verizon Center of Progress Building.” Like Verizon and “progress” have ever gone hand in hand. What’s next? Hospitals slapping a sticker on the forehead of a newborn, “This hospital recommends Pearly White Toothpaste for all children”?

When does this insanity stop?