8/27/08

Take the good with the bad...

I cruised down to Wayne State University in Detroit to do some research for a client at the Detroit Public Library. I had a mixed experience. It dealt with credit and food.

The bad...

As I turned off Warren and headed for the parking structure my eyes turned into tiny slits and I felt my face warm with anger. I saw the messengers of financial doom huddled under their mercenary tent, pictured here. I almost told them they should be a shamed of themselves, but decided since I was looking for a job, it might not be the best time to get smacked with any harassment charges.

The reason that I was so furious about this tent and the Chase minions under it was because of a documentary I watched a bit ago called Maxed Out. If you haven't seen it you must! If you have a kid going to college for the first time, or if you are a freshman reading this blog, take heed: if you are offered a credit card, turn and run like hell.

I understand that people need money in college for stuff, but the reason that these credit card companies come to campus is because they KNOW that students will drop into debt. Students, especially freshmen, are still learning how to spend money, but if they don't learn quick, Chase and all the other thievery corporations of its type bank off the learning curve. Hence, newly graduated high school students think they're getting a taste of independence, when all they're really doing is paving the first stretch of road that leads to terrible debt.

You know who else credit card companies bank of off? Poor people. Like students, poor people don't know how to spend their money and often times fall right into the credit hole as well. Huge corporate conglomerates like this don't make money off of rich people. They make money off poor people who don't know any better. It's disgusting, but all explained very clearly in Maxed Out. Besides, how do you think the mortgage crisis started? Same idea, give to the poor and bank off their mistakes.

The good...

After I completed my research, I took a stroll across the street to Wayne State's Farmer's Market. I was a little late, but still managed to score some beautiful garlic and squash. Good times. There were some good-looking peppers, too, but I didn't have enough cash on me. I've got to say, I'm really happy to learn about all these different farmer's markets in the area - there's one in Southfield every Thursday, one in Royal Oak every Friday and Saturday and there's always good ol' Eastern Market, which I've still never been to. Looking for a farm or farmer's market near you? Check out http://www.localharvest.org/. I haven't visited in a while, but definitely noticed that many more specs have appeared on the map, which is great news for local growers.

In related news, I heard about this really interesting (and controversial) new documentary called Food Matters. Probably one of the biggest draws for me with this flick is that it discusses how doctors aren't asking simple, but insanely important questions about our health: those regarding our nutrition. You know, questions like whether we are staying hydrated, what does our daily diet look like, etc. Thinking back on my visits to the doctor, I don't recall ever being asked that (just being scolded for smoking). What's up with that, doc?

If you're looking for some ideas on how to eat better, I might recommend the website http://www.nutritiondata.com/. There's a fantastic blog there, calorie counters and information about the food you eat, from how nutritious it is to how filling it is. I'm no mega-nutrition expert, but we've all got to start somewhere (and apparently it ain't at the doctors office - that's right, I said "ain't").

2 comments:

Carlie said...

I wanted to ask you if you were going to catch the WSU farmers market but I didn't have a chance. Good to know you went and it was good. I would be on that for sure if I wasn't 2000 miles away.

Christine said...

I don't like the credit card people. evil, evil, evil.

I do like the book "What To Eat" by Marion Nestle