Thursday, March 22, 2007

Back in The Saddle

(Houston) My thanks to Karl Eggerss and Jack Warkenthien for standing in the gap during my trip to Washington D.C. this week. We did some important work for cancer research funding…and I appreciate Karl and Jack’s help that enabled me to get away.

What a fun place D. C. can be…yesterday the Al Gore rock 'n roll Global Warming tour chugged through Congress and across the Washington Mall (which, I had to gently tell my bride, is not a shopping center), where the global warm-mongers were in full force with an inflatable planet earth sitting atop a glowing pyre…

I spoke with a doctor about this during our visit…and mentioned my global warming theory—that is, the instrumentation and measurements we’ve taken in the past 20—years are much more precise, and what we’re actually seeing is a comparison of more accurate data against less precise measurements of the past. What Mr. Gore and his disciples are ignoring are the cyclical patterns of global temperature variations…and, I suspect, most of the hot air contributing to certain atmospheric gasses, in fact, are emanating from the mouths of politicians.

You’d never know there’s an energy crisis on right now. Talk about global warming—every building in Washington D.C. was running heat at 85-degrees. A beautiful day in Washington on Tuesday—clear skies, brilliant sunshine, temps in the 60’s…and every building in town was blast-furnace hot.
Want to melt an icecap or two?
Just leave the door open to any government building…

On the other side of the capitol, on the steps of the Supreme Court, the argument was over First Amendment rights for students. There were kids out on school break, demonstrating by taping their mouths shut. In most school districts, teachers can lose their jobs for that.

This argument is a waste of the Supreme’s time.
Students don’t have rights.
You go to school on the public dime, then go to class.
When you graduate, then you can exercise all those rights you’ve learned about in Civics class. In the meantime, sit down, shut up, and get the lessons done.

We walked all over Capitol Hill, and last night, as my legs and feet were recounting the mileage travelled, the thought struck me that Nike is missing a real opportunity: Why not create a dress-sneaker?

(The sneaker industry already creates some of the most hideous shoe designs known to mankind. You’d think that with that kind of mis-guided creativity, they could partner with a main-stream dress shoe designer to come up with something that looks classy, wears like iron, and is kind to feet that daily pound the pavement.)

In Washington (and New York, and I suspect all major cities), the ladies in particular wear sneakers to commute, carrying their dress shoes (heels, pumps, whatever) in a bag. After negotiating trains, busses, cabs and curbs, they discretely change into their fashionable shoes, tucking the sneakers away until the afternoon commute.

So why not a Nike (or Reebock or Brooks) sneaker that looks great with a suit (men’s or women’s) is easy on your feet, and will take the pounding of a daily commute?

On second thought, it’ll likely never happen. Why would shoe manufacturers sell a product that cuts their volume sales in half?

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