Saturday, July 01, 2006

Bicycle built for two: Solving gas shortages & obesity problems at the same time!

There are not one but two kinds of oil driving the American economy: Gasoline and partially-hydrogenated vegetable oil. We all know about gasoline. We purchase gas at $3.50 a gallon. We send our sons off to fight in Bush's wars so that he can make more money off of it. We breath gas-polluted air. We schlep down the freeways at 90 miles an hour. We are experts on gasoline.

But I only found out about America's second "oil war" recently -- when doctors began telling us that partially-hydrogenated vegetable oil was killing off Americans too.

I am also an expert on partially-hydrogenated vegetable oil. How did this happen? Easy. I went to the partially-hydrogenated school of hard knocks! Every year since they were Brownies, me and my daughter's Girl Scout troop have spent the first three weeks in March standing in front of the Berkeley Bowl Market selling Thin Mints, Tagalongs and Samoas -- rain or shine. And we did a booming business too. PEOPLE REALLY LOVE THAT STUFF. In just ten years, our troop -- composed of only eleven girls -- sold 60,000 boxes of Girl Scout cookies! And what was our strong selling point? Partially-hydrogenated vegetable oil! Gotta have it. It's addictive. I KNOW.

More than wars, poverty or cancer, obesity is killing Americans off at a tremendous rate. Just yesterday, I saw a teenager at the Pittsburg-Bay Point BART train station -- she couldn't have been older than 19 -- who weighed 500 pounds. FIVE HUNDRED POUNDS! "Jane, you gotta have been mistaken!" Yeah, it might have been closer to 600.

So. Addiction to gasoline is killing us. Obesity caused by the rampant use of partially-hydrogenated vegetable oils is killing us too. So. Let's solve both problems at once. Let's all start riding bicycles.

Will somebody out there PLEASE invent a bunch of bicycles that we can all dude up in and ride to work, shopping, across country and to take the cat to the vet? Then we can get healthy and get exercise and get less pollution all at the same time. Let's become less dependent on oil!

And will somebody please invent an 18-wheeler bike-truck so that truckers will get exercise too? I can see it all now -- this huge monster Peter-Built powered by 25 truckers pedaling their hearts out in sync with Johnny Cash singing "Walk the Line," stopping at truck stops to fuel up on Gatorade!

PS: Our Girl Scout troop took its profits and went off on a Caribbean cruise. Boy, did we have fun. Somebody needs to invent a bicycle cruise ship too!

PPS: It's my 64th birthday today and it is really going well. Only one more year and I'll be eligible for Medi-Care! Plus I just got a call from President [sic] Bush, promising me that he was finally going to stop dissing Jesus, give up his weird pyramid schemes to destroy the world and spend the rest of his life modeling orange jump suits. This was the best birthday present of all!