I Want A Planet That Dispenses Chocolate Milk And I Want It NOW!

The Year: 2525. The Place: Earth.

Our planet’s population has continued to grow, while our ability to live on other planets has not. With over 38 billion inhabitants, Earth has become more crowded than the average clown car. All those people needed somewhere to live, so every available inch of the world has been converted to living space. This leaves humanity with quite a conundrum: where will all our stuff come from?

Luckily, though humans are unable to live on other planets, we can quickly and easily travel to them via teleportation and stay there for up to 18 hours at a time, depending on the planet. Everyone on Earth with a job works on another planet, kids go to school on other planets, and all our stuff comes from other planets that have been scientifically adapted by us crafty homo sapiens to produce the things we need.

On Planet B-32, toothbrushes grown right out of the ground like grass. We no longer need cows for our milk, because Planet A&D is naught but a vast, constantly regenerating sea of homogenized skim. Planet 9V has been converted to a living lithium ion battery manufacturer, where batteries of all shapes and sizes just grow on trees, ready to be plucked…

At least, that’s the future as I see it. Is it perfect? Absolutely not. Is it pure science fiction, an unattainable notion that could never come to fruition? Probably. But it would be a heck of a lot more fun than: A) going to a store to buy a toothbrush, gallon of milk, or batteries; or, B) buying any of those items online.

Plus, after a few hundred years, after the expense of altering the individual planets had been mitigated by selling the individual items, the planet-produced stuff would become cheaper and cheaper, and, eventually, free.

Of course, since everything would be made automagically by planets that are essentially living factories, very few people would need to have jobs. This would inevitably lead to ever-faster population increases (because what do you think are people gonna do if they don’t have to go to work *a-wink*). In turn, this would require more and more alien planets to be terraformed into battery or toothbrush or milk or whatever generators, which would require workers, which would give people “something else” to do, which would thereby slow the population increase considerably. Ultimately, a stasis would be achieved, things would level off for a bit, and the whole cycle would begin again…

*sigh*

Sorry to go all Stanislaw Lem-y there. I just really hate having to buy batteries for my wireless mouse.

Bready, Set, Go!

Someone who cares waaaay too much about the freshness of his or her baked goods has deciphered a “code” in the colors of bread bag twist ties (available here if you’re equally nutty or want to play along at home). According to this bread enthusiast/nutburger, bakeries use a different color twist tie for each day of the week that bread is baked (Monday = blue twist ties, Tuesday = green, etc.) By memorizing this code, one can always be sure to get the freshest possible bread from the grocery store.

While the “code” may be a real thing—and, again, according to several sources, it is—it’s pretty pointless to spend one’s time scouring the bakery rack at Ralph’s to find the most recently baked loaf of whole wheat. Bread never really stays on the shelves for long enough for it to be an issue, and, in fact, the color coded bread bag twist tie scheme was concocted to make it easier for those stocking the shelves to find the older loaves so that they can be removed.

Grocery stores don’t want to sell stale bread to their customers anymore than customers want to buy it, so that does make sense. But shuffling through fifteen loaves to find a loaf that’s at most a day fresher than the others is a huge waste of time. Clowns like this are why I hate going to the grocery store: just grab a loaf and the get the fudge out of my way!

My PET Monster

If you were a kid in the mid-1980s, you may remember a toy called “My Pet Monster.” If you don’t remember (or were born too early or too late), My Pet Monster was a funky looking, cartoonishly goofy, blue “monster” of indeterminate origin. Its construction was about 80% standard plush stuffed toy, with about 20% moderately hard plastic parts—teeth, eyes, horns, and the like.

Here comes the interesting part: the plastic parts were made of PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic, meaning My Pet Monster was also My PET Monster. I don’t have the research to back this up, but I don’t think there have been any other toys where the material of construction can double as the name. He-Man action figures weren’t made of MAN plastic, Hot Wheels cars aren’t made of HOT steel—neither of these materials actually exist. A case could be made that Transformers are made of “formed” plastic, but that doesn’t quite fit the scheme.

PET plastic is also found in a huge array of other products, most notably soda bottles. You can find a My Pet Monster on eBay with starting bids as low as $0.99. Raw PET plastic is a bit more spendy, but can be found in an array of forms—such as PET rod, sheet, and pellets—if one wants to attempt the construction of one’s very own, custom-made, handcrafted My Pet Monster.

However, beware the evil “Copyright Infringement,” as the people at American Greetings may not take kindly to your knock-off creation.

Travel the World! Well, Not the WHOLE World

As people who live on Planet Earth, we literally have an entire world to explore. And, travel is a lot of fun, if you do it the right way. With those thoughts in mind, I ask: Why would you want to take a tour of China?

Sure, China does have a good amount of history, and, from photos I’ve seen, some pretty decent scenery. So do plenty of other countries, however, and those ones don’t require a 13 or so hour flight, aren’t polluted to high heaven, and aren’t run by an oppressive Communist government. But, someone out there in Internet Land is advertising special tours of China that will let you enjoy all those great things and more.

“What about the Great Wall?” you may ask. “It’s thousands of years old and so mammoth that it can be seen from space. Isn’t that cool?” No, it isn’t. I’ve seen walls, lots of them—not sure how a really big one is going to be all that impressive. Also, I’m not sure how this malarkey got started, but you can’t see the Great Wall of China from space. Sorry. And, yes, it is thousands of years old, but that alone does not make it interesting. The pyramids of Egypt are thousands of years older, and are far more noteworthy for many reasons, not the least of which is the fact that I don’t have four very, very similar things holding up the roof of my house.

But, by all means, have fun spending over half a day on a plane, breathing toxic fumes, and not being able to access Google on your smartphone.