Once the local news got through with their "human interest" stories about what's going on for the Labor Day weekend - picnics, the Jersey shore and outdoor activities (ground-breaking stuff) - they actually stumbled onto something interesting, believe it or not.
Some people in Philadelphia were among the first to test drive the Smartcar. What's a Smartcar? It's actually a subsidiary of Mercedes and they've been selling them around the world for a while. Starting in the first half of 2008, they'll be available here in the USA.
The smart fortwo pure will start under $12,000, the smart fortwo passion coupe will start under $14,000 and the smart fortwo passion cabrio will start under $17,000. The vehicle is designed to achieve 40 plus mpg under normal driving conditions and current standards. The gas tank of the smart fortwo is 8.7 gallons.
It looks a bit odd, but then, new things often do. Remember when we made fun of Hyundai's? It looks like an ideal vehicle for cities where space is at a premium. With a top speed of 90mph, it may be a bit slew-footed for life in the suburbs, but maybe kids will start driving them? I'm not sure I'd like to be side-by-side on the highway next to a Yukon or some big Mack, though. It still runs on gas, and the mileage isn't spectacular, but when they get to a hybrid, let me know.
Monday is Labor Day, and unless you work for government, big industry or a utility you are probably working. Almost everything, including my municipal-run fitness center is open, and the list of things that are closed is likely shorter. I'm getting a lot of blog hits for my little rant last year over the holiday oddity, and of course, nothing has changed. I think it's time we had a real National holiday, and not these Legal holidays that allow businesses to be open at their discretion. Would America suffer so greatly if we couldn't get to the mall on Monday?
Generally, people at the lower end of the pay scale are the ones who wind up working on Monday. Maybe they get holiday pay, but how many of them would just as soon have a day off once in a while? The difference between time and a half and a paid holiday is only the "half", and much of that gets eaten in taxes. Wouldn't you like to sit around and sip beer at a picnic rather than schlep sandwiches or ring up discounted pants?
The Phillies, one of life's great mysteries, went down to Florida and lost 2 of three after sweeping a four-game series against the first place Mets. They're hard to figure, and I guess they'll take us right down to the wire again this year - as they have every year for the past 4 - only to [maybe] cough it up in the last few days. The Eastern division is winnable, but not if you're going to lose to clowns like the Marlin. By the way, Marlin is plural, and I refuse to call them the Marlins, regardless of what their uniforms say.
Have a nice Labor Day, readers. I hope you aren't working.