Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Buy Underwear! Eat Dessert!

Did you know when you buy new underwear, you’ve signaled Wall Street to boom? Oh yes. Heard it on the Today Show. Financial analysts report that our economy is showing signs of recovery. What are those signs, you ask? Leading indicator: Surges in sales of new underthings!

According to this theory, when things get tight (beg your pardon for the pun) we tend to hold onto our shabby undies. As economic conditions improve, we replace the grayed and stringy in favor of pastel and springy.

In a troubling side note, this also seems to indicate that economists know the state of our lingerie. Somewhat creepy. But what can you do? It’s like pretending that all your personal information is secure on the internet. It’s not. They already know. But ragged BVD’s linked to a sagging GDP? Really?

Guess what’s another leading indicator of an economic upswing? Dessert consumption! I am all over this one! Matt and Meredith said it this week: Eating dessert after a meal in a restaurant is evidence of consumer confidence. Appetizers too! Following the Undergarment Theory of Economic Cycles, the ingestion of these delightful, but superfluous luxuries reflects optimism, which in turn harkens to the economic rebound we’re seeking. And for the first time since 2009, dessert intake is expanding. It follows logically, so say the analysts, that our economy is expanding too. Not to mention our waistlines and the accompanying elasticity of our underwear. But I digress.

Hallelujah and hooray! At last, something I can do to help. Underwear, appetizers and dessert! It’s been such a long time. I am energized just knowing the powerful impact of these three small but profound contributions! Having new underwear is almost as much fun as having new shoes. Appetizers and desserts? You know you’re living the life!

Finally, in a downward economic trend, tee times wane. We don’t play enough golf. I’m certainly guilty on this count. I can’t remember the last time I skulled one into a water hazard. Actually, I can. So can the poor coot that was in my line of fire. Rolled over like a foundering sailboat. (Coots' feet are green!) But now, duffers from Walla Walla to Washington D.C. are teeing up again, and the economy senses it.

Observe the multi-tasker among us, heralding a healthy economy: Nibbling nachos as she waits for her tee time. She hits a bucket of balls in her brand new Fruit of the Looms. After nine holes, in the clubhouse, she chooses not beer, but cherry cobbler. A la mode, of course. Done and done.

Hey…wait a minute. Could it be the other way around? Could it be we can control the economy with our attitudes toward, and purchases of, underwear? If we detect a dip in the market, can we create a turnaround by ordering jalapeno poppers or tiramisu? I think we could be onto something here. To paraphrase a great motivator: The only things we have to fear are stretched-out elastic, calorie counting, and divots on the fairway…I’ll work on that.

And by the by, why didn’t they tell us this stuff months ago? We could have staged a nationwide campaign to boost the economy out of the doldrums. I can see it now. Picketers with posters chanting at the entrances to Chili’s and Outback. “Eat your cake! Eat your cake!” Emotions kick up quickly in these scenarios: “Un-American” scrawled across the door to Jenny Craig’s.

Schoolchildren add to their list of responsibilities for good citizenship: Vote; pay your taxes; and wear fresh new underwear! Of course they’ll eat their desserts – right after a round of Putt Putt.

We’d have public service announcements on prime time TV: Who would be our spokesperson? Steven Colbert? No. Paula Deen? No! Oprah Winfrey herself exhorting earnestly from the fairway, “Uncle Sam needs you to keep our country strong. Do your part. Have chips and guacamole tonight.”

Power to the People! For the good of the country: Eat! Play! Buy new skivvies!

I’m going to write a screenplay and see if Julia Roberts will sign for the lead.