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A Doff of the Derby, A Tsk of the Tongue



Some companies just live on, don’t they?  In college I read the book “Fast Food Nation”, and it describes the rise of McDonald’s, some of its business practices, and how they’re doing today.  And today, they’re in a better position than anyone, offering quick, cheap food in a poor economy.  Plus, they keep doing other sneaky good things.  As I mentioned in a previous blog, I had been pining for some McD’s since the busted up jaw.  When I noticed I couldn’t open my mouth wide enough to fit a particularily chubby blueberry in, I ruled out the QPC.  But I figured I could get a cheeseburger in (you remember McDonalds cheeseburgers, they’re thinner than an O.J. alibi).  So I made the trek over to McD’s, and outside they have that redbox DVD rental machine.  Come on, who can trust a machine set out by McDonalds offering 1 dollar renals?  I figured there was some criminal intent behind it.   But as I walked by I saw that they had Chris Rock’s new stand up “Kill The Messenger”.  I’ve tried to rent it the past few nights but its been out (yes, I’m renting movies on a nightly basis).  I hit RENT A DVD, then the letter K, then KILL THE MESSENGER, then CHECK OUT, I swiped my card, and 11 seconds and a $1.03 later I was holding the DVD.  Huh.  Impressive.  I was trying to figure out this business practice (thinking that most new releases rent for 4 times that price), when it occured to me I’d have to take it back tomorrow.  To McDonald’s front door.  Aha.  Verrrryyy sneaky.  Good luck gettin outta there tomorrow without a sacka nuggets and a coke, Bourne.  McDonalds 1, Bourne 1…burger, 1 small fries, 1 small coke and 4 nuggets. (Am I up 7  – 1 or down $4.50?)  A doff of the derby, Redbox.  Tsk of the tongue, McDonalds.

The price of alcohol in Idaho (the US in general) is insanely low.  For some reason, Canadian beer gets a lot of good press in the American media.  And really, there are a lot of smaller breweries that make great beer in BC.  But it seems that the hype is about the higher alcohol content.  That 70′s Show had the kids driving up to Canada for beer cause “it’s like moonshine up there”.  The US does have that strange 3.2 percent beer offered in certain gas stations in certain states.  In fact, the state to state rules are kinda tough to keep tabs on, in particular if you’d like to have beer with your Sunday football.  Some states sell it freaking everywhere, you can’t get a head of lettuce without ending up with beer in your bag.  And some have it on lockdown, I DARE you to try and locate a normal beer anywhere in Utah on a Sunday.  But as much as the laws vary, the price remains in a reasonably close bracket (with Idaho the current leader in low price, from my experience).  If you’re in Kelowna and want to buy a dozen Coors Light or Kokanee bottles, which is your standard cheap domestic beer, you’re looking at paying $33.00+.  The Albertsons that’s 150 yards from my door in Idaho has a Superbowl special on right now (2 bucks cheaper than normal) for 20 bottles of Coors Light for $12.97.  Pardon me?  You can barely bottle water for that price.  The last bottle of Pinot Grigio I bought there (PS, it’s a grocery store, for you Canadians) cost $3.99, and it wasn’t the cheapest bottle.  And I liked it.  I think thats what Evian actually sells for.  Apparently the differences is the taxes, but man…  man.  That’s a pretty big swing.  A doff of the derby, America.  Tsk of the tongue, Canada.

And my last point is, American Idol sucks.  So does Canadian, British and Ethiopian idol.  But if someone has it on,  my face aims at the screen while my brain tries to get out.  Tractor beam.  I hate everything about reality TV, glorifying idiots, awkward moments and brutal concepts.  But I get why people like them, I really do.  It’s like the metaphor of watching a train wreck, you know it’s awful, but you have to watch (do you know anyone who knows anyone who’s actually seen one wreck?).  Yet still, I reeeeaaalllly think it’s a cultural virus, creating more of these monsters who believe you can actually get famous (which you actualy can) by acting like a complete donkey in public.  We have to stop this, don’t we?  I think we can be a little more responsible here.  Here’s the clincher… why can both you and I picture that weird asian kid singing “Livin’ La Vida Loca” (William Hung, I just looked it up) right now?  Not.  Okay.  A doff of the…. wait.  Um… face punch for American Idol.*

*Just because I don’t like watching it doesn’t mean people with good voices shouldn’t exploit the show for exposure and a break.  There.  Rock it out in Canada, Brown-town.


One Response to “A Doff of the Derby, A Tsk of the Tongue”
  1. Robin says:

    LOL Justin it was “She Bangs” that Hung did!

    I was a media studies major in college so I’ve studied a lot of what you’ve talked about here. I can’t even begin to get started on the whole McDonalds bit, there’s also a book called the McDonaldization of Society, but anyway, the Red Box rentals have been put in the majority of our Stop & Shop grocery stores. I mean it’s a great idea, and if Netflix or digital rentals haven’t already, it will probably put Blockbuster out of business because now people just need to pick a movie up while they grocery shop, or as you’ve said, get McDonalds, which from what I heard on my tech podcast, they’re going to be showing up at all the McDonalds (I wouldn’t know if they’re there yet here, I don’t do the whole McD’s thing).

    Back to American Idol, my parents want me to try out this year, but I’ve previously had a talk with my vocal coach and she is very against the show. I think it’s messed up that you have to go through a 1st round of judges before the actual judges. So they are letting people through who have no talent (and make fools of themselves on national TV), while rejecting some that do have the talent to make it. It’s brutal, and I don’t think I would want to be a part of that.

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