Wednesday, July 16, 2003

The Value of Time

Last Sunday we packed up the boys and drove up to Cleveland for Harborfest -- greasy food, local music, and bunch of really big sailing ships. It was a beautiful day for it -- mostly cloudless, light breeze off the lake, but certainly quite hot to be standing out in the sun for any length of time. In the middle of this was a Sharpie display with a spinning wheel, which people apparently used to win a pen -- the type of pen being determined by the wheel. People seemed to be waiting in line for 10-15 minutes in direct sunlight to get an ordinary pen. I don't get it, my time and comfort are worth more than a 20 cent pen, and I really can't imagine a situation in which they'd be worth less.

Another thing I noticed about HarborFest is that they haven't learned the lessons yet that southern festivals have. Despite the heat and the largely stark nature of the site, the only water that was available was $2.50/0.5 liters. Even at Texas football games they managed to figure out that when someone collapses from heat exhaustion it's bad for business, and if you want to keep people present and spending money, some form of free hydration is a really good idea. Perhaps that meme will eventually spread up here.