Saturday, August 29, 2009

1001 Ways To Tune Up The World, Number Twenty-Four.

24. Personalized Candy Bar Making Machines.

Do I really need to explain or justify this one?

Okay. Here goes. Why can't I get a Zero bar when I want one? Why do I have to wonder if they still make Bit-O-Honey? Why do candy bars like "Seven Up" go off the market and we can never get them again? Why am I limited to three flavors of Charleston Chew?

What kind of world is this?

We can print books on demand. We can download songs and movies and, someday, TV shows (Hulu doesn't count. Hulu sucks unless you have superfast Internet.) We can do everything on demand.

Except get candy bars.

Every mall, it seems, has that one fancy candy store where you can get candy that you can't get anywhere else, like jawbreakers too big to put in your mouth (what's the point?) and licorice flavored like martinis (again...) but I can't go in there and get, say a Cookies-And-Creme Zero Bar.

Why not? How hard is that to do, come up with something where I push some buttons and press a lever and wait 10 minutes and out comes my Personalized Candy Bar? It's not even hard to make a candy bar. Take a Snickers: Nougat is poured into a mold and cooled. Then caramel is poured on top of that. Then it's all covered with chocolate which is allowed to harden. That's all done by machines already, so all that's necessary is to miniaturize and speed that up a little, so that I can order my candy bar, browse for 10 minutes, then take my Butterfinger-Charleston Chew hybrid off shopping with me.

Presumably, I'd be shopping for larger pants. But I'm willing to take that risk to move the world into the future.

13. Ban driving any kind of automobile, motorcycle or other personal vehicle within 1-2 miles of downtown in any city with a population of more than 100,000.

12. Abolish gym class; instead, teach kids to play musical instruments.

11. Change copyright laws to allow anyone to use anyone else's creative work provided that the copier pay 60% of the profit to the originator and that the copier not cast the original work in a negative light.

10. Have more sidewalk cafes and outdoor seating.

9. When you have to give someone a gift, ask them what they want, and then get that thing for them.

8. Never interrupt or finish someone's jokes.

7. Periodically, give up something you like for at least a month.

6. Switch to "E-money."

5. Have each person assigned one phone number, and then add an extension for the various phones and faxes that person might be reached at.

4. Abolish Mondays and Tuesdays.

3. Don't listen to interviews with athletes or comedians.

2. Have "personal cashiers" at the grocery store.

1. Don't earn more than $200,000 per year.

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