Sunday, December 30, 2012

A Cornspiracy

A few years ago there was an attack on the corn industry. One of the largest subsidized industries in our nation. There were anti-corn ads on television and radio. Everyone was out to get corn and the vile syrup that was made from it.
Everything has contained corn syrup for as long as I can remember. It wasn't until it became trendy to hate it that everyone suddenly did. A new scapegoat was born. Americans love a scapegoat. Anything to keep them from holding themselves accountable for their own actions; they are all for it! So apparently corn syrup was making everyone fat, their teeth fall out and giving them cancer. But what about those of us that corn syrup wasn't doing that to? You know, the moderation crowd? Didn't matter. Corn was under attack and it was trendy to hate it so everyone did. Corporations jumped on the band wagon and decided to quit using it in their products. Now EVERYONE hated corn and its syrup. What was big corn to do? Go away? Quit producing the United States' largest cash crop? NO WAY!
Big corn decided to fight back. They created the "sugar is sugar" campaign. The ads ran on television to try to neutralize the enemy's ads. Did this work? Not really. Everyone had already gotten used to no corn syrup not out of any righteousness but simply ease. The trend was dead. The corporations had altered their recipes. There was no going back.
Now corn had a bigger dilemma: What the hell were they going to do with all this damn corn?
Well, create a new trend, of course. But how? What was a good way to deflect all this negativity while regaining the love of the American public? Hmmm.
Wheat is a large cash crop. How about creating a backlash against wheat?
Out of seemingly no where (yeah, right) everyone suddenly jumped on this anti-gluten band wagon. Gluten is bad for you! It causes a whole host of maladies, even the same ones that corn syrup used to be responsible for! Everyone at work is suddenly "gluten intolerant" WTF?
Really? Everyone?
Like corn syrup, I have been ingesting gluten for decades - in moderate amounts, of course, and have seen no repercussions. I read an article somewhere (when I re-hunt it down I will post the link in the comments if you happen to be interested in the least) that the gluten information out there came from one guy who posted a bunch of psuedo-scientific related studies calling out names of proteins and the like which do not exist to create interest in his wheat-free diet and training program. I'm betting he also works for the corn industry. Or is sponsored by them. Or they just paid him to do it.
All the gluten-free weirdos now LOVE corn! They are eating corn noodles, drinking corn vodka and the tortilla chip industry is booming! What gives, people? Are we so ready to condemn something and jump on any old bandwagon just to have a scape goat?
Well, big corn figured it out. They are back on top. I'm just curious what big bad wheat will do to try to regain the crown. Keep an eye out because it promises to be good. I just wonder if they will counter attack corn or take aim at some other industry. We shall see.
In the meantime, I plan to keep eating what I know to be good for me, not what television and trends dictate. I suggest you do the same.
Now if I could just figure out how to create a trend that will somehow benefit me........ :)

Friday, January 6, 2012

To Be a Dick, or Not to Be a Dick? That is the Choice

Today I was walking around the neighborhood and as I was coming to an intersection, I noticed that this young kid driving just ran right through the stop sign only slowing enough to make his turn. 
This was interesting to me. 
Why do people think they don't have to obey traffic laws or ANY laws for that matter, if no one is around?
This also got me thinking about the girl who used to live next door to me.  She used to sit in front of my apartment and smoke cigarettes, blowing the smoke directly into my air conditioning unit and subsequently into my apartment.  My place would reek of smoke.
One day I decided I had had enough when the smell woke me from my slumber. 
I stepped outside and asked her nicely if she wouldn't mind standing when she smoked because when she sat her smoke was being sucked into my A/C unit and going into my place.  I said I understood that she did not want her place to smell like smoke but that I didn't smoke so mine surely should not smell like smoke.
So here is the point where my neighbor got to choose: should I be a courteous neighbor or should I be a dick?
Well, once her boyfriend got involved I guess they chose to be dicks.
Why? Why would one choose to be a dick when they also had the choice to be cool?
Of course once I reminded them that the circuit breaker box was in my apartment and I could cut their electricity off at any time, well then they decided to be cool and smoke in the stairwell.
Should it have come to that?
No.  It should not have.
We all have a choice every time we make a choice.
Should I stop for that stop sign or should I be a dick?
Should I be courteous to my neighbors or should I be a dick?
If we all chose to be the cool person how awesome would that be?
A few signs that you may be making the choice to be a dick:
- you don't obey traffic laws when no one else is around
- you are on your cell phone while in a shopping check out line
- you are talking during a live music performance or movie
- you arrive late for appointments and committments you have scheduled
- you are always at odds with your neighbor or co-workers
I could go on and on but you get where I'm going with this
and if you don't, you're probably a dick.
How about as a New Year's resolution we all try to be a little more cool and a little less dick?