You get what you pay for — sometimes

mercedes-benz maybach s600 speedometermercedes-benz maybach s600 list priceA few weeks back, I visited a Mercedes-Benz showroom and sat in a $205,385 Maybach S600 sedan. As you might guess, the quality was so amazing I could almost taste it.

Except for the video-monitor style gauges. Mercedes did not get the message that a $299 list-price iPad Mini has a much better display.

The devil is in the details? Maybe in this case!

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And we wonder why the sky is brown

emissionsI had a shocking realization the other day. I took our 12-year old Honda minivan in for an emissions test. (It’s required by law.)

The family transport vehicle (aka, “living room on wheels”) passed with flying colors. In fact, the margin between what was acceptable and what it produced was huge. And that’s with a relatively large engine — 3.5 liters that produces 240 horsepower.

Here are the results:

  • Hydrocarbons — just 2% of the fail amount
  • Carbon Monoxide — just under 3% of the fail amount
  • Nitrogen oxides — 28% of the fail amount

Obviously, the Colorado government needs to tighten its standards. Methinks the law makers have a bunch of weekend 1960s American cars with no emissions controls installed at all.

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Citizens’ Initiatives

dog poop bag dispenser

Our neighborhood has a few walking paths. And we walk along them, from time to time.

A very kind citizen put this “add a used newspaper or grocery bag dispenser for dog poop” dispenser along the trail.

Wonderful!

The local parks authority provides their own dispensers, but they have to spend labor hours, the costs of special poop bags and create pollution by a small pickup truck going along the trails to refill the dispensers.

It’s so much better for ordinary people to add their used grocery or newspaper bags to these simple-to-build dispensers!

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I love early autumn

extra-blanketIt’s getting to be that time of the year in Colorado when you wake up in the middle of the night and think, “Is it worth the effort to pull up the extra blanket and half-wake myself up?”

I love the crisp cool evenings and warm afternoons. The leaves are just barely starting to turn. Haze from California’s wildfires seems to be dying back a little. I don’t have to wear an extra layer when riding my bicycle to work.

It’s really the best time of the year.

(And it seems like summer started just a month or so ago.)

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The Ferrari Paradox

Ferrari F12 BerlinettaI’ve always been a car guy.

When I was a younger man, I reflected on the injustice of old men driving super-fast cars while no longer possessing the quick reflexes to fully exploit their machines’ potential.

Young men generally can’t afford supercars. Old men no longer have the responsibilities of paying for their kids’ soccer team fees, college tuitions, braces, etc. So if they have a substantial income, that lifelong dream of owning a drivable work of art may come true.

But they can’t drive them as fast as those fire-breathing dragons deserve.

I propose that older male Ferrari owners host track days for young men in their early twenties to enjoy a lap or two.

Come on, you can afford it.

And invite me. I’m not in my twenties, but…

Photo courtesy of frankenspotter. Creative Commons licensed via Flickr.

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