The "Maybe, Maybe Not" Edition
One of my least favorite times in New York City is also among my most favorite. Every year, it gets so cold here** in January that people walk down the street with their hands jammed in their coat pockets. This means that almost noone is texting, reading, or Facetiming as they walk. That is very pleasant! They are still looking down to avoid the biting wind in their face but I still think it’s a big improvement.
A question: is there is actually a rise in Facetiming as the default mode of sidewalk communication? Or do I just clock the Facetimers because I hear a cacophony of conversational bullshit coming out of seemingly every phone I pass? On the subway, playing Instagram and TikTok video out loud also seems to be the norm now. It’s not just the background noise I don’t care for. Mostly, I am wondering how everyone is affording unlimited data.
In general, I am shocked at 2022 prices. Is this actual inflation? Is this fake inflation (which I believe in) where storekeepers and restaurateurs read a couple of “inflation” headlines and jack their prices up so that crap clothes, fancy clothes that are actually made crappily, crap food, fancy food that is actually mediocre-to-crappy, is all what I would think are 2042 prices? Or am I just always expecting 1992 prices and have to get a grip? I know at least one very senior, smart economist reads this publication. Please tell me what you think, AK.
I did not have a dry January nor did I have a New Year’s Resolution that involves weight loss, but for some reason I am eating and drinking (alcohol) less than I have in years. Will keep tabs on this but note: I do not believe I have body dysmorphia or risk of self-deprivation for negative reasons. I think I am just cold and bored of Covid and finally am not having to—even with shared responsibility— shop, cook and clean up from a bajillion meals a week and I am enjoying that! There is one more January week so maybe I will go for gluttony on all fronts to make up for the first three weeks.
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** Folks who live in super-cold places like Chicago, anywhere in The Great Plains, The Dakotas, Alaska or anywhere that is super cold: I do understand it is colder where you live than in New York, so you may not need to email me to tell me that. Maybe that’s why January in New York stinks—it just shouldn’t be this cold here, whereas if you live in Wyoming you might expect it…?