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Jun 21, 2024

Quibbles & Bits: Supply and Da Moon

Melita and Selene, together again

By Ed Goldman

SUPPLY CHAIN—In an era of rising prices and shrinking products, I’m still amazed that it takes me weeks to run out of Melita coffee filters even though I brew a new pot every day. Yet every time I reach into the little box to pull out a new one, it looks as though the little cones have multiplied overnight.

I suppose it could also have something to do with my reusing each filter at least once even though I spoon fresh coffee onto the top of the used grounds lingering in the cone. I don’t do this to save money on the filters (though clearly, it enables me to): it just makes for a turbo-charged pot of Joe, allowing me to work all day without taking my two union-entitled 15-minute breaks.

Edgy Cartoon

Caffeinatin’ rhythm, you’ve got me in your spell…  

I used to notice the same value when I had to keep kitty-waste trash baggies on hand. I don’t recall replenishing them more than two or three times a year. In fact, I still have a stash of then throughout my place even though my beloved tabby Osborn the Magnificent died at 19 a couple of years ago. 

I’m sure a psychologist would say I still have the bags because I don’t think Osborn really died—or that I’m planning to adopt another cat any day now. Left unconsidered is that I may be remarkably lazy.

You can easily determine why you don’t run out of certain products. If it’s over-the-counter medicine it’s because you’ve either recovered from whatever malady required it or you found it so dreadful to swallow or apply that you decided to either find another brand or to tough out whatever was wrong with you. 

This explains why I’ve kept, long beyond their dump-by dates, an almost-full bottle of pink Generic Bismol and artificial-cherry-laced Generic Tussin (for treating generic indigestion and generic coughing, respectively). I keep thinking someday I’ll have a dinner guest who’ll suddenly require one of these. But since I rarely invite people over, this seems unlikely. Discuss?

LUNATIC-TALK—I’ve been enjoying the chatter about giving our moon its very own time zone. I presume it’d be seasonably split into Lunar Standard and Lunar Daylight times in the same idiotic manner we divide up the country—with the notable exception of Arizona, which stays on Mountain Standard Time year-’round and has exactly one livable season (the third week of February, as I recall). CBS News reported not long ago that the White House—which, under President Joe Biden, has become one of the nation’s most respected assisted-living facilities—”is directing NASA to work with other government agencies to develop a lunar-based time system called Coordinated Lunar Time, abbreviated as LTC.”

The report said the goal “is to create a standard time measurement that will help coordinate efforts as humanity returns to the moon for exploration and economic development.” 

Economic development? Aha! Then this is simply about the Benjamins, as they used to say in New York City, the little island where I was born. I suppose it won’t be long before we establish a tourism bureau there (“Visit Sea Of Tranquility!”) and the first Crater Region Chamber of Commerce. Travel planners will begin making “fam” (familiarization) trips to the moon so they can report back to their clients on how many hotels might be built there by, say, 2179. 

Someone will also need to build the Selene Convention Center, named to honor the Greek goddess of the moon, while developers will vie for naming rights of what’s sometimes referred to as a “natural satellite” (since the moon is neither a star nor a planet). So get ready for an epic Battle of the Interplanetary Egos, featuring wanna-be honorees Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and Donald Trump, provided the latter is paroled in time for the mandatory bidders’ conference. 

If the notion of all this makes you feel a tad ill, give me a call. I have plenty of Generic Bismol on hand.

Don’t forget! A new Goldman State Podcast drops every Friday!


Ed Goldman's column appears almost every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. A former daily columnist for the Sacramento Business Journal, as well as monthly columnist for Sacramento Magazine and Comstock’s Business Magazine, he’s the author of five books, two plays and one musical (so far).