Given all the talk, figures and news stories of an economy that, while technically out of the recession, is still pretty slow as many consumers are still out of work, restaurants, in my area anyway, seem to be doing quite well. On any given night and especially on weekends, a drive through the center of Fairfield often reveals several eateries with full parking lots and patrons walking in and out their front doors at a steady clip. A few weeks ago, my wife and I entered two restaurants before finding an open seat at a third. What does this mean? Are all of these places, which range from diner to high-end, offering five stars on the trinity of food, service and atmosphere? Have they all lowered their prices to an attractive level? Are consumers spending more as the economy shows signs of recovery? Does the area’s affluence play a factor? Perhaps it’s a combination of these factors. Having spent several years in the restaurant industry from the prosperous mid-to-late 80s to the not-so-prosperous early 90s, my feeling is that, in good times and bad, people just need to eat out, to satisfy the basic needs of nourishing the body and escaping the stress of the real world, if only for a little while.
Archive for July, 2010
The latest commercial touting the services of locally based GE Capital to small businesses and consumers shows an all-terrain vehicle racing over a series of pristine desert sand dunes.
I hate it, especially when the GE Cap exec being treated to a thrill ride by the Polaris exec gets off the four-wheeler and whoops it up like he’s just won Powerball.
Some might understandably see this as being about polluting the atmosphere, unnecessarily burning gasoline, making unconscionable noise in the wilderness and scarring a beautiful landscape, all for a few yucks and profit.
Now don’t get me wrong, GE Capital finances a lot of necessary and wonderful things, from refrigerators to keep your food warm to — as it announced this week — musical instrument purchases to add some beauty to our lives.
And all-terrain-vehicles are indispensable tools for such things as wilderness and wildlife management, fighting forest fires, search and rescue and many economically driven activities off the beaten path.
But for the company that has been touting its “ecomagination” to stink up the desert for a joyride commercial is a little unseemly — and irresponsible.
GE, you’re better than this.