Providence– where it rains two days
out of three except during the rainy
season when it snows like a bitch.
- A poster inside Brown University's Grad Center Bar
Stocks- On Tuesday, Goldman Sachs raised their price targets on the S&P 500 to 1750 by year end 2013, 1900 in 2014, and 2100 in 2015. Only the Powerball lottery rises faster.
Global Growth- Goldman Sachs expects global growth to improve from 3.0% in 2012 to 3.2% in 2013 and to accelerate further to 4.1% in 2014. Greece? Cypress? Whatever.
E-Commerce- According to a report issued Tuesday by the consulting firm PwC, 58% of Chinese respondents said they shop online at least once a week. By comparison, only 42% of US respondents, 41% of those in Britain, and 29% of Germans said they shopped online at least once a week. The percentage was lowest in France, where only 13% said they made online purchase once or more a week. Trust me, I’ve seen France. You want to get outside.
Just Plain Marginal
Golf- Golf’s governing bodies announced Tuesday that anchoring the club in making a putting stroke will be banned effective Jan. 1, 2016. Do professional golfers really need thirty months of lead time to change their swings? I change mine seven times a round.
Views From the Cheap Seats
“Back To School” was a 1986 movie starring Rodney Dangerfield about a fun loving and obnoxious rich businessman who decides to enter college to help get his discouraged son through school. My fourteen days in Providence was like returning to college, only this time I was armed with a credit card and a real ID. Here are some of the highlights:
Food Trucking– A primary goal during this trip was to make sure Ross and his surgically-repaired left ankle got outside of his house at least once a day. One afternoon I rolled Ross into my rental car and cruised down to the corner of Thayer and George Streets, an area I later renamed “The Brown Food Court.” Lined up like planes taxiing for takeoff were a half-dozen food trucks catering to starving students in search of anything not resembling mystery meat. While Ross cooled his heels in the car, I walked up to each food truck, took a picture of their menu with my iPhone, and texted the photo back to him. Twenty minutes later we were sitting in our car noshing on tasty tacos and delicious baked chicken. Several cute girls stopped by to sympathize with Ross and ask if there was anything they could do for him. I wished they had asked me that question.
A Global Investment– Ross’s last college assignment was to write a twenty-page paper on religion in China and its effect on who knows what. To celebrate its completion, I suggested Ross take his laptop to his favorite restaurant, where we would record his last collegiate hit of the SEND button. Ross loved this idea, and he invited two of his friends to join us for celebratory Sunday brunch at Kabob and Curry. I now have on my iPhone a treasured memory of an American kid completing a Chinese course in an Indian restaurant. That alone was worth the quarter-million dollar investment.
Like Father, Like Son– Ross and I spent hours in his living room, sharing guy thoughts as well as guy smells. To get out of our Sportscenter comfort zone, Ross turned me on to the Netflix drama “House of Cards.” It took all of five minutes to get me hooked on the show, and we ended up watching all thirteen episodes together. I tried to return the favor by suggesting we watch the first full season of “Mork and Mindy.” Maybe this summer.
Eat With Your Hands– One night I told Ross I’d take him and a friend anywhere they wanted to go for dinner. “How do you fell about eating with your hands?” he asked. We ended up at Abyssinia, a dive restaurant on Wickenden Street that serves Ethiopian comfort food. My two thoughts; one, isn’t any food served in Ethiopia considered “comfort food?” And two, eating Ethiopian food is similar to eating Mexican fajitas, minus the margarita chaser.
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