I have been in a sort of funk lately. It just seems like things are not going so well. Oh not for me personally. Actually things in my life are pretty much ok. Sure I haven’t hit the lottery yet (Lottery: A tax on the stupid) and I still have to work. But without work I wouldn’t know when I was on vacation so it all evens out. Sort of.

But what has me worried is that the good old US of A seems to be slipping. At least if you pay any attention to the news. I keep hearing about how we are no longer a world leader. That our health care system is all messed up. That we are so deep in debt as a nation that it will be they year 2525 before we figure out just how much in debt we are. That our bridges and roads are falling apart. That our judges and other leaders are as crooked as…well pretty crooked. That last part seems to be true.

But the other day while I was mulling over all this stuff I was on a tour of local drug stores. The long suffering wife was on some sort of a scavenger hunt. I was bored. So I looked around. I guess they aren’t called drug stores anymore. It’s no wonder. Of the ones we visited less than 20% is devoted to pharmacy. The rest is an almost indescribable collection of everything you can imagine. It’s almost quicker to list what you can’t buy at a drug store these days.

Beer, at least in PA. Tires. That’s about it. Forget something at the grocery store? It’s there. Neglect to buy what you needed at Radio Shack? Everything from cell phones to multi USB hubs. Motor oil? Check. Lawn Furniture? In assorted colors. Refrigerator? Well, small ones but still…there they are. Need plastic skulls and foam gravestones for Halloween? Stacks of them. So much back to school stuff that you could equip several schools grades 1-6 with plenty left over for Junior High. Tools? Yup.

Reading material? So many different magazines that you furnish every doctors waiting room in NEPA and never duplicate a title. By the way did you know that MAD Magazine is still published? Figures. Now that I can buy it without my parents yelling at me I don’t want to. But my point? In just my little town you can’t throw a rock without breaking a window at one of these mutant department stores with a Pharmacy counter. It just seems to me that a lot has to be going right for us to have such freedom of choice.

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About James Rising

A recovering radio addict wrestles with the written word.
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