Discover more from chasing answers
chasing answers newsletter #52
Plant-Based U.S., EVs for the win, Asshole or not?
“People eat meat and think they will become strong as an ox, forgetting that the ox eats grass.” - Pino Caruso
I’ve got a couple of feel-good pieces of news to share this week, and I’m looking for something to replace my ‘Best of Twitter’ section in the newsletter.
Until I can find a permanent replacement, I’ll have rotating sections each week. This week we’re going to play ‘Asshole or not?’
If you’ve been a reader for a while, you know I’m a vegetarian and have been for some time. I was twenty-six when I went vegan, and I stayed that way for about seven or eight years. I’m now approaching forty-five, and while I’m not technically a vegan anymore (I will eat a pizza or get ice cream with my wife and daughter now and then,) I still haven’t eaten meat in over eight-teen years.
So, I was delighted to see this article claiming that 70% of the U.S. is now consuming plant-based foods. I won’t go into all the statistics in the article, but here are a couple that jumped out to me.
Plant-based milk now accounts for 15% of all milk sold in the U.S., and in 2022, over 40% of households purchased dairy-free milk.
Despite declines in unit sales and dollar sales, plant-based meat was still purchased by 17.5% of households in 2022.
I’m in the camp that firmly believes a plant-based diet is critical to the long-term survival of our planet, so it’s great to see a larger percentage of Americans giving it (or at least parts of it) a try.
EVs For the Win
I’m ashamed to say it, but our family doesn’t own an EV yet. Even worse, we own an SUV.
Yes, a giant, gas-guzzling, no one should need a vehicle that big, SUV. If a jeep wrangler counts as an SUV, then we own two. Several years ago, when we purchased our SUV, there weren’t really any EV alternatives on the market for a vehicle that size.
Why do we even need a vehicle that size?
Good question. And I only have one excuse.
We love to go camping and spend time outdoors. The first camping trip after my daughter was born made one thing very clear. It’s no easy task fitting camping gear, baby gear, two dogs, two kayaks, groceries for the week, a baby, and two adults into a jeep wrangler.
We looked like something from a National Lampoon movie going down the highway. It took all of sixty minutes into that drive to decide we were getting a bigger vehicle. I had always scoffed at the idea of these giant SUVs I would see rolling down the highway and considered them a huge waste of money.
But suddenly, I was willing to pay almost anything for more space.
While I am personally doing a poor job being an early adopter in the EV space, they are catching on with others at an increasing rate.
This article from Yale Environment 360 states that EVs should capture nearly a fifth of the market this year at 18%
In 2022, global EV sales were 10 million, and in 2023 they are estimated to reach 14 million. That’s a 40% increase in one year!
And in the EU, U.S., and China, EVs will reach an estimated 60% of sales by 2030.
This is all great news. Unless, of course, you are in the internal combustion engine or gas business.
Asshole or Not?
My wife and I have very different ideas about what constitutes being an asshole. Let’s just say I’m a little more lenient in that department. This constantly leads to situations where I feel I did nothing wrong, but my wife thinks I acted like……..well, an asshole.
So, I’m letting you, the readers, decide.
The situation below unfolded when we recently went to Dairy Queen to get ice cream.
In my defense, it had been a rough day, and going to get ice cream with the family was supposed to be the relaxing stress reliever we all needed.
The exchange below picks up right after I ordered my and my wife’s ice cream and tried to order my daughter’s—a simple cup of vanilla ice cream.
DQ Employee: Anything else?
Me: Yeah, can I get a small cup of vanilla ice cream?
DQ Employee: I’m sorry, what was that?
Me: I just need a small cup of vanilla ice cream.
DQ Employee: Umm, we don’t have that.
Me: You don’t have a cup of vanilla ice cream?
DQ: No, I’m sorry. We don’t.
My Daughter: You mean I can’t get ice cream?
Me: (To my daughter) You can get ice cream.
Me: (To the DQ Employee) What do you mean, you don’t have it? This is Dairy Queen, right? (My wife slaps my arm)
DQ Employee: Umm, yeah, this is Dairy Queen, but we don’t have a small cup of vanilla ice cream in the system.
Me: Check the system again. We get it here all the time. (I can feel my wife staring at me)
DQ Employee: I’m sorry, it’s not in the system. But what I can do is give you an Oreo blizzard without the Oreo. I’ll have to charge you for an Oreo blizzard, though.
My Daughter: But Dad, I don’t want an Oreo blizzard.
Me: (To my daughter) I know you don’t. Just relax.
Me: (To the DQ Employee) Wait, you want to give me an Oreo blizzard without the Oreo in it?
DQ Employee: Yeah, I can do that. Does that work?
Me: You realize an Oreo blizzard without Oreo IS a cup of vanilla ice cream, right?
DQ Employee: Yeah, but it’s in a blizzard cup.
Me: (Looking at my wife) She’s fucking with me, right? Like, there has to be a camera somewhere recording this shit. (My wife rolls her eyes and looks away)
Me: So, you can put the vanilla ice cream in the blizzard cup and call it an Oreo blizzard without Oreo AND charge me for a blizzard, but you can’t just put it in a plain cup and charge me for a small cup of vanilla ice cream?
DQ Employee: I’m afraid not.
Me: Whatever, just give me the damn blizzard without the…………wait a minute. Can I get a small vanilla cone?
DQ Employee: You want a vanilla cone?
My Daughter: Dad, I don’t want a cone!
Me: (To my daughter) I know you don’t want a cone. Just chill out for a sec.
DQ Employee: So you don’t want the Oreo blizzard without Orea anymore?
Me: I never DID want an Oreo blizzard without Oreo. I wanted a small cup of vanilla ice cream.
DQ Employee: We don’t have that in the system.
Me: Goddamn it. Yeah, I know, it’s not in the system. Can I just get the small vanilla cone?
DQ Employee: Ok, one small vanilla cone. Anything else?
Me: Can I get a plain cup with that? (my wife punches me in the arm)
My wife: Would you just drop it?
DQ Employee: You just want a plain empty cup?
DQ Employee: Ok, no problem. Anything else?
Me: Can you take the small vanilla cone and stick it upside down in the cup, and then when the ice cream falls into the cup, throw the cone away? (I can hear my wife grumbling)
DQ Employee: Ummm, that would be a cup of vanilla ice cream.
Me: No shit.
DQ Employee: We don’t have that……(gets cut off by me)
Me: …..in the goddamn system. Got it. Just give me the small vanilla cone with the empty cup. Thanks.
DQ Employee: Is that all?
Me: (resting my head on the steering wheel in exhaustion) And a spoon, please.
There you have it. Asshole or not??
I hope you all have a great week!
As always, I would love to hear from you.
If you read something here that resonates with you, leave a comment.
If you would like to discuss something further, shoot me an email.
If there was something you absolutely hated, @ me on Twitter.
And if there is something you think I should be writing about, please let me know.
If you want to see more of my work, visit chasinganswers.co.
Thank you for reading, and if you liked what you read, please share.