Economic Theory 101: the raincoaster index

If only I could afford the barrel

If you’re an economist, you’ve probably heard about all kinds of bizarre and no doubt three-letter-acronymed thingies that measure vitality of the economy. If you’re not an economist (demographically speaking, it is indeed likely that people reading my blog are not economists, as surprising as that may seem) you may have heard of things like the GDP, SET index, and similiar TLA‘s, but have you heard of:

The Hotness Index

The hotter the waitresses, the weaker the economy. In flush times, there is a robust market for hotness. Selling everything from condos to premium vodka is enhanced by proximity to pretty young people (of both sexes) who get paid for providing this service. That leaves more-punishing work, like waiting tables, to those with less striking genetic gifts. But not anymore.

A waitress at one Lower East Side club described to me what happened there: “They slowly let the boys go, then the less attractive girls, and then these hot girls appeared out of nowhere. All in the hope of bringing in more business. The managers even admitted it. These hot girls that once thrived on the generosity of their friends in the scene for hookups—hosting events, marketing brands, modeling—are now hunting for work.” A Soho restaurateur I know recently received applications from “a couple of classic Eastern European fembots. Once upon a time, these ladies must’ve made $1,500 a night lap dancing. At my place, they’re not going to make that in a week.”

In the same vein, and somewhat more directly relevant, at least to MY life and probably to yours, too, since who can afford to eat out anymore, I’d like to present:

The raincoaster Index

Image of raincoaster raincoaster
12/14/09

I was invited to fourteen corporate holiday parties last year, all within walking distance of one another, all with open bars. This year, NONE! And I didn’t suddenly become more obnoxious, companies have really cut back.

Okay, gripe over. Fucking cheapskates.

@raincoaster: I’m convinced that your drinking binges are a better measure of the economy than the number of advance durable goods shipments.

Questions? Challenges? Drink offers?

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Operation Global Media Domination: The Proust Questionnaire Situation

Yes, yet another self-referential blog post. After all, what else is there for me to talk about but…you know…me? I’m an expert on me. I know me backwards and forwards, inside and out (or at least I do since I saw that CAT scan) upside and down.

raincoaster inverted

In Bizarro World, raincoaster falls asleep every night promptly at a reasonable hour, beside one of: Viggo Mortensen, Johnny Depp, Steve Jobs, James Tiberius Kirk, Henry V as played by Kenneth Branagh, Michael Lewis, or Sebastian Junger; the bed is stuffed with fluffy, fluffy Krugerrands, and the nightgown is carved from one solid, flawless diamond. Ah, for a life of ease!

In Bizarro World, raincoaster works for Vanity Fair, or rather VF publishes old blog posts of mine, with the YouTubes embedded right in the glossy pages using special technology developed just for me.

And, most importantly, in Bizarro World raincoaster is profiled by Vanity Fair.

The raincoaster Proust Questionnaire:

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Uh, didn’t you READ the post?

2. What is your greatest fear?

Server problems. If a blog falls in the forest and nobody’s subscribed to the RSS feed…

3. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

Modesty. I’ve almost completely succeeded in eradicating it, but not quite.

4. What is the trait you most deplore in others?

An inability to recognize my awesomenosity

5. Which living person do you most admire?

Besides myself?

6. What is your greatest extravagance?

Gin. My liver has a vested interest in keeping me poor and sober.

7. What is your current state of mind?

Fried. This getting up in the MORNING is for the birds. Right, birds wake up early. Birds eat worms. Therefore, getting up early sucks.

8. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Getting up early, duh. Haven’t you been reading?

9. On what occasion do you lie?

When the truth would give a falsely modest impression of my awesomenosity. It just wouldn’t be fair.

10. What do you most dislike about your appearance?

My tentacles will NOT stay combed.

11. Which living person do you most despise?

Is Thatcher still alive? Bush? The guy who cancelled M.A.S.H.? WHY MUST THESE QUESTIONS BE SO HARD?

12. What is the quality you most like in a man?

The ability to be Viggo Mortensen.

13. What is the quality you most like in a woman?

The ability not to get between me and Viggo Mortensen.

14. Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Me, Myself and I would like you to define “overuse.”

15. What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Again, I am forced to ask haven’t you been reading this?

16. When and where were you happiest?

Any day now.

17. Which talent would you most like to have?

The ability to fake sincerity.

18. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My socks. And if you were sitting beside me, you wouldn’t need to ask why.

19. What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Earning the good home-maker badge and the whatchamacallit, housewife emblem, in Girl Guides, thus proving once and for all that I can do ANYTHING.

20. If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?

The vindictive joke of a malevolent god, that’s what me coming back would be. The fucker.

21. Where would you most like to live?

Olympus. Failing that, Not-Ucluelet.

22. What is your most treasured possession?

My self-possession, obviously!

23. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

No Followers.

24. What is your favorite occupation?

What are you hiring for, big fella?

25. What is your most marked characteristic?

Did you read this one?

26. What do you most value in your friends?

The ability to buy me drinks at the Heather.

27. Who are your favorite writers?

The ones who buy me drinks, and not just what they’re having.

28. Who is your hero of fiction?

I’d say Caspian the Tenth, King of Narnia, but he’s not fictional.

29. Which historical figure do you most identify with?

Myself.

30. Who are your heroes in real life?

See #27

31. What are your favorite names?

Robin, Anastasia, Skippy the Klingon

32. What is it that you most dislike?

Blogathons

33. What is your greatest regret?

Volunteering to do this blogathon without laying in an adequate supply of gin and/or z’s.

34. How would you like to die?

Vindicated. Stole that one from Fran Lebowitz, but how could I not?

35. What is your motto?

49 degrees latitude, 360 degrees attitude!

This is a Blogathon post. Don’t just sit there, SPONSOR ME!

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Post-Postathon Pampering

Wolverine is a big tipper

Having never participated in Blogathon before, I was unsure how to prepare, and consequently there are some gaping holes where my careful preparations should be. I brought, for instance, my travel kit of personal care products including shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste and toothbrush. I forgot, however, a towel. I suppose I could always air-dry?

And I’m out of gin. Yes, ALREADY.

As with my prep, so with my after-party; that is, I haven’t gotten it hooked up yet. I would assume that doing 48 posts in 24 hours (NOT 49, I AM TELLING YOU) would be deserving of a reward, one other than and in addition to the obvious one of sleep. Just what that reward could be, I haven’t really decided, except that it will involve making other people do stuff I could damn well do for myself. In fact, as long as it meets that criteria, it qualifies as what I want most. I mostly always want other people to do stuff for me, but rarely have the excuse to demand it.

Which, you may have noticed, does not stop me from doing so anyway.

I could get someone to help me clean my place, but a) it’s so big a job I’d have to help out, thus negating the not-lifting-a-finger thing, b) no way can I afford to pay someone to tackle this themselves, in fact I’m not sure Bill Gates has enough money. I mean, I know what’s growing under there; can I honestly ask some poor sap from MollyMaid to take that on? And can I afford to settle the wrongful death suits if she does?

I could get perfume, only the only perfume I like costs enough that it might as well be distilled from the beaded brow sweat of the collected offspring of Serge Gainsbourg, generated while they adapted Mozart’s Queen of the Night aria to a new rock opera to star Viggo Mortensen. Harvested under a solar eclipse.

So, yeah.

I could get a pirate hat. I look GOOOOOOOD in a pirate hat, not like some costumey dope; I look like some cross-dressing 17th Century chick on a mission of revenge, something that’ll change the course of history in the South Pacific forever. Not like this:

Pirates do tend to overaccessorize

But a cheap pirate hat is not a good look. So it’s either the expensive pirate hat, or the spa visit, I’m thinking. Or gin? Gin goes with everything!

This is a Blogathon post. Don’t just sit there, SPONSOR ME!

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