Thursday, August 7, 2008

It's A Crisis!

Our city only has one taco truck. I know this because I've investigated it.

The good news is that this particular taco truck happens to be the best taco truck in the nation (I know this because I've eaten--and been blessed with a wide variety of digestive maladies--at many of them).

It also happens to be permanently parked (why wouldn't they just rent a restaurant?) on the extreme opposite corner of town. It sits in the parking lot of an adult bookstore, which always makes me feel a little awkward when going to get a taco. I'm never quite sure when going to grab a bite whether I should park in an inconspicuous location, or park right out in front where everyone can see me.

At any rate, I was thinking about the taco truck the other day. We were readying to go visit Shawna's family for a few days, and Shawna was complaining about having to pack all of our considerable accoutrement's into the trunk of our comfortable (but admittedly cramped when full of all of our stuff) family sedan. She was lamenting the absence of her beloved, oversized SUV (which we sold a few months ago). And I realized that there is a problem.

I can get three tacos at this taco truck of mine for a dollar. If we still owned the gas-guzzling SUV, it would cost me more in fuel to drive to the taco truck than it would cost me to eat. That's wrong. I'm not old, but I have been driving for awhile. When I got my license twelve years ago, gas hovered at around .95 cents a gallon. In twelve years, the price of gas has risen by nearly %500, a fantastic investment by any account, seeing as how, generally my investments appreciate, on average, at about -7.7 % per year.

I should have bought a bunch of gas when I got my license.

I think, though, that necessity is truly the mother of invention. If nothing else, these prices are a good thing in that they're causing entrepreneurial, inventive people to come up with brilliant ideas, alternatives to paying $5 a gallon for fuel.

And it's great for the people that make Smart Cars; Shawna told me that she heard that there's a two year wait list for purchasing the things.

But I'm talking about something bigger than just little cars.

Things like moving sidewalks (like they have at the airport); you can jump on to go grab some lunch. It's faster than walking, and costs almost nothing. Or maybe new cities can be planned with canals instead of roads (like Venice). Instead of driving to the supermarket or the taco truck, you can jump in a gondola and take a ride down the canal.

My favorite is virtual entertainment. For example, I envision Disney creating a virtual Disneyland that you can buy and load up on your Wii (assuming you have a widescreen and surround sound, and the rumble pack that goes under your couch leg), and ride "It's A Small World" right there in your living room.

What do you think? What are your ideas for mitigating the "Gas Is Atrocious!" crisis?

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