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by: R-800

We live in proud times. So proud that I have coined a term for it. This is the "Era of the Ever-Widening American Ass". Movie theatres rush to expand their theatre seating to keep up with the swelling demand for relaxation and comfort by bloated bellies and loathsome love-handles. Car manufacturers constantly boast roomier seating for every lethargic, luxury-hungry loser with a 30,000 dollar bill in his hand. Why do our cars need to be roomier? Oh, I remember, now, to haul around the infinitely swelling American buttocks. But there’s only so much width to the lane a car has to drive in, so how much roomier can the cars reasonably get? Despite all of this, however, it makes me feel so proud to know that we never fail as a gluttonous nation of commercialism guinea pigs to fall right in line and do our "economic duty" to consume, consume, consume every time Uncle Pavlov rings his experimental dinner bell that tells us whenever there’s a sale somewhere, trying to see if he can get us to start drooling. Wow, I feel more patriotic just thinking about it.

Various commercial interests constantly set new standards for serving sizes for foods and drink of various types, and every few years, we break these standards, like it’s going to get us in the Guineas Book or something. Who knows, with the way that TV show version of the Guineas Book seems to be so much more about showcasing freaks than about the perseverance of determined people to break a staggering record, maybe we’ll make the cut after all. But honestly, does anyone else remember when 12 oz. cans were enough for anybody? Then everyone had to have a 16 oz. bottle? Then they coaxed us into buying a 20 oz. bottle because according to the label, you were getting 4 ounces for FREE? Then some time later, they just dropped off the 4 free ounces part of the label, because by that time, everyone was too hooked on the new serving size standard to care what they were paying for anymore. And now, we have reached a new glorified pinnacle of shining serving size greatness-the 1 litre. Americans are the only people in the world who still don’t understand the Metric System, but they can count that the number of gulps they get out of a bottle of this size is at least two or three more than the standard bottle size of two or three years ago, and that’s all they need to know.

Then again, who wants to get in shape
when this guy is leading the crusade
to a healthier, more physically fit life?

Next I can see everyone walking around with a 2 litre in one hand like those deadhead Football stars used to do in those Coke commercials a few years back. Don’t think it can happen? Are you watching the trend? Have you no faith in the greed machine’s power to engage in shrewd marketing strategies? It might be the case before I can even finish writing this rant.

In spite of all this, though, not all product quantities are growing. Not at all. My bag of Doritos, for example, is a mere shriveled shuck of it’s former self. What I vaguely remember as containing as much as 16 oz. eventually became 15 ˝, then 15, then 14 ˝, then 14, and yet, while it’s bad enough that no one ever got around to fixing the defective production machinery that was shortchanging all those bags like that, they never lowered the price to compensate for this terrible malfunction. For years I was certain it was merely an honest oversight. Until now, that is, since the price has been raised, removing any chance I might have had of giving Frito Lay the benefit of a doubt... Bastards! 

Oh well, I think I’ll give ‘em up anyway. With a slogan like "Crunch all you want-We’ll make more", one wonders how much more sickening American a slogans can get. That would be like "Dixie" making some paper cups and dishes with a shrink-wrapped package labeled "Chuck all you want-We’ll make more!" Well, that’s a relief. I was re-using the damn things because I was afraid Dixie might not make enough to keep up with demand if I didn’t. Silly me.

So here’s my grand conclusion. American citizens have one and only one purpose. Our job, as a massive blob of pop-cultural ooze, is to buy everything we’re told, and shut the fuck up. If you have the courage to say something anyway, good luck getting it out over the din of all the cheering fans at the next major sporting event, because unlike you, they’re being good citizens. And with all the concession and ticket revenues, there shouldn’t be any problems expanding the width of the stadium seats when it becomes necessary. Good deal.

note: R-800 spends his time "Sweatin' to the Oldies" with Richard Simmons. It's quite a spectacle to see.

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