Saturday, April 16, 2011

Smiles Over the Miles

The best thing about our trips are the smiles and laughter we share along the way.

The following are in no particular order.

With the quickly climbing price of gas, I know many folks are once again planning "Stay-cations." This sign at a gas station car wash in a Toledo suburb had my mind wandering a bit.
Can you read it?
It says
Our car wash is open."

Can't you just picture a family donning snorkel gear from their local Dollar Tree, piling the gang into the family SUV and taking this Underwater Adventure ? Do you think they've painted fish on the walls behind the sprayers and brushes?
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Just East of the Illinois state line, we saw this billboard encouraging migration to Indiana:
Illinoyed by high taxes?
Settle in Indiana
This is not the first time we've seen signs encouraging folks to escape across that state line. Indiana is the only place I've seen try to harvest their neighbor's residents. Let's get real - they just want you for your tax dollars, too.

As you roll along I-80 between Gary and Chicago, one is bombarded with signs pushing Gentleman's Clubs and Nudie Bars, as if these were Chicago's only claim to fame. Some are quite enticing, many use humor. Mixed in among them is an interesting ad for a jewelry store. A very sensuous looking gal's bare shoulders and thick luxuriant hair catches your eye. White lettering above her states, "She wants a stud." Below her, it advises, "Give her two." There is a beautiful pair of glistening diamond earrings rounding out the picture! There are lots of other jewelry ads along this section of highway, too.

So --- do you think there's a correlation here? Buy the "little wifie" a gift to compensate for stopping off at the girlie bar?
The family's 17-year-old has finally gotten his first car. Nearly as old as he is, it appears to have been garage kept and looks beautiful - no scratches, dents or visible wear. (Yet!) It gets great mileage, too. That's because it doesn't run! His Grandad describes it as a vehicle to get one from Point A to Point B. Problem is, it only gets to Point A and then won't start again. It'll keep him in school, though. Once he gets there, he'll be stranded as the car won't start again!

We heard an appropriate riddle for him on the radio in Ohio - "What do the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus and a $2,000 reliable used car have in common?" (That's what he paid.) "They're all imaginary!!" Well, everybody else in the family laughed.

That same guy got his first checking account while we were there. The bank has a special "Student Account" that functions as a checking account, using a debit card but does not issue actual paper checks for transactions. He'll be able to deposit and cash his pay checks. (He works part time). Of course, we all had advice for him and advised him to save a little from each pay for a "rainy day." This went right over his head and he asked what we meant. Again, Grandad, in his wisdom, said, "You need a little cushion for when a rainy day comes along and you need some cash." Our boy just looked confused and, shrugging, said, "No, the ATM's work when it rains. They all have a roof over them."

No wonder this country is in such deep financial do-do. No one is saving for emergencies because all the ATM have roofs!!

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