I admit that on occasion I've bought bottled water, for example on long road-trips. But I've also found it amusing that Evian backwards spells...well, you can figure it out. The Economist this week explains why, exactly, buying bottled water shows consumers are daft:
The success of bottled water is in many ways one of capitalism’s greatest mysteries. Studies show consistently that tap water is purer than many bottled waters—not including those that contain only tap water, which by some estimates is 40% of the total by volume. The health benefits that are claimed for some bottled waters are unproven, at best. By volume, bottled water often costs 1,000 times the price of tap water. Indeed, even with oil prices sky high, a litre of bottled water can cost more than a litre of petrol. And on top of that, there are the environmental costs of transporting bottled water and of manufacturing and disposing of the bottles.
Yet sales of bottled water have been booming. In 2006 Americans spent nearly $11 billion buying 31.2 billion liters of the stuff, an increase in volume of 9.5% on a year earlier. The average American drank 104.5 L of bottled water last year, up from 63.2 L in 2000.
All of which shows the problems of the average IQ being 100.
I'll be participating once more in the Les Turner ALS Foundation's annual Walk4Life, this year on September 8th. You can make donations to my mom's team through CharityWeb.
Here's the text of my mom's letter:
As you all know, on March 17, 2004, I was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, a fatal neuromuscular disease that attacks motor neurons. It makes even the simplest movements of walking, speaking, and gesturing nearly impossible. No one knows its cause; there is no cure.
Today, I can no longer live on my own. I have wonderful caregivers who help me with everything—from getting me out of bed in the morning, to putting me into bed at night. I can no longer speak clearly or type, so communication has become much more difficult. Even so, I am so very fortunate to have family and friends whose patience, care, and senses of humor keep me from despair. I have felt so cared for and cared about that "thank you" is hardly adequate.
Once again, I will be rolling along on the Walk4ife this September 8th to raise money for the Les Turner ALS Foundation. The money is used to fund Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s Lois Insolia ALS Center for research at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine to find the cause of, and a cure for, the disease.
Donate and walk. Parker will be there, too.
Does it seem odd to anyone that a boat from land-locked Switzerland won this year's America's Cup last night?
Long-time readers will know that I rarely post personal news here (and I'm sure some thank me for it), but this one is good: it appears we've sold our condo. In the present real-estate market, that's really good news. It sold about three months faster than I expected (but three months slower than we'd hoped.) So, barring the buyer getting hit by a bus, that's one huge thing we no longer have to fret over.
Can anyone identify the species?
I finally got around to Googling Markéta Irglová, who played "The Girl" in Once. It turns out, she's 19. As in, years old. As in, she's not old enough to drink legally in the U.S., and she has two albums out. And they're really good albums.
This is in the same category of realizing that when Mozart was my age, he'd been dead almost a year.
 Actually, Mozart was just shy of 36, so if I were him—utterly ridiculous, if you know me—I'd have died on 14 July 2006.
I saw the movie Once almost a week ago, and I can't get it out of my head. Imagine a musical where the music makes sense in real life (i.e., when was the last time you saw a crowd spontaneously break into song? OK, how about a subway busker? Which one makes more sense?). And the music is really, really good.
I have now sent the same 2GB compact flash card through the laundry twice. It still works. I'm impressed. That is all.
From a long-time blog reader, a court decision that...well, just read it: http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2007/0601071beatles1.html.