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Stateside: The Five Most Useful Things of 2005

Stateside With Rosalea Barker

The Five Most Useful Things of 2005


"Get to hell, God! What are you farting around up here for instead of rolling up your sleeves and getting to work down in the hot place?" Well, judging by the TV news bulletins, he's snarled in the traffic of folks asking to be saved from ominously creaking trees and three inches of water in their yard. Which isn't to say that I wouldn't be praying in the midst of an actual almighty storm and flood, but we humans are supposed to be looking after ourselves in the physical realm, aren't we?


Only apes and humans have them, and they're just so damned useful. Good for crying on, putting an arm around, carrying a child to safety, hanging a backpack off, where would be be without them? I declare 2005 to be the Year of the Shoulder.

::Shuttle Buses::

Complementing my daily bus/BART trip from one side of San Francisco Bay to the other is the shuttle bus that goes from the intermodal station to various nearby businesses. They're free to the commuters, being subsidised by the businesses and various local agencies interested in having fewer cars on the road and less pollution. There's even one to take game designers to work in nearby Foster City. How cool is that!

::Batteries and Fast Processors::

I lump the two together just because where there's one you're almost certain to find the other, especially if there's a teenager, a disaster, or a war involved.


Having plumbed the depths of debt this year, I have a new-found respect for other people's willingness to overlook the numbers and the short-term picture in favour of giving a person in dire straits a bit of leeway. Thank you, one and all. If I'd only realised earlier that the world isn't just made up of Fine Print Enforcers, and done some negotiating much earlier, I could've saved myself a lot of angst.

Well, here's to the upcoming Year of the Dog. (Or the Year of the Dog Star if you're Howard Stern.)



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