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Monday, August 22, 2016

Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!: Signs of the Apocalypse, Part 3





No, it's NOT all about Marcia (top left),  It's about Jan (middle left), who spoke those catchphrase words in the frustration that only a middle sister could understand.

Note: Signs of the Apocalypse are those seemingly unworldly happenings that run dramatically counter to the real world normal. Could these events be foretelling that the end is near? Nah! Things ARE getting crazier and that's the new normal.

But this time, the last laugh is Jan's (Eve Plumb in real life). It was 1969 and Eve was one year into her most noted role as Jan on The Brady Bunch which lasted on TV until 1974... and then in syndication perhaps forever.

So 11-year-old Eve bought her first house, a little 850 square-footer with a wrap-around deck, for $55,300. She just sold that house for a mere $3.9 million. Not bad appreciation for a starter home. Near that time, I bought my first house, 900-square feet, for $14,900. Then made a killing when I sold it three years later for $16,100. I was rich!

Her secret: Location, location, location. Her house was on the ocean in Malibu Beach. I guess the ocean wasn't there in 1969 which is why she bought it cheap(er). Mine was in Peoria, Illinois which is nowhere near the ocean... or anything else.

The Hermes Bolide 45 Shark
  

Want a new travel bag? This little bugger caught my eye. Saw it in Vanity Fair magazine... a must have. It's the Hermes Bolide 45 Shark " for a weekend get away or an extended sojourn" It's only $12,800, not counting tax, postage and handling and looks to be well worth it. I think the folks at Motel 6 will be green with envy when I check in with this beauty.

Medical bills got you up against the wall? I remember in the publishing biz (my life's work), every year, employee medical costs would increase by double digits, year after year. This was a number of years back and I'd always wonder why medical stuff just kept getting more and more expensive.

My nifty back belt
So maybe I shouldn't have been surprised when I had back surgery earlier in the year and I (and my insurance company) had to buy and use this back support for about a month. This is the one my surgeon said was the best and he wanted me to have it. So I did. Later, when the charge came through, I was a teensy bit taken aback. Would you guess it cost $1,550? Amazon had one from the same company that looked vaguely familiar. It went for $250, on Amazon Prime no less, but I'm sure it couldn't possibly match my Cadillac version.

Then there are the medications that suddenly increase in price overnight when the rights to manufacture are sold to another pharmaceutical company. A few of the notable:  

  • Cycloserine for tuberculosis, from $500 to $10,800 for 30 pills.
  • Ofirmed, an injectable painkiller, from $410 to$1,019.52 for 24 vials.
  • Vimovo for symptoms of arthritis, from $160 to $1,678.52 for 60 tablets.
  • Edecrin, a duretic, from $470 to $4,600 per vial.
  • Benznidizole, treats Chagas disease, a $60,000 per treatment increase.
  • EpiPen, for kids with life-threatening allergies, a 400% increase since acquisition.
  • But the ignominius topper is Daraprim. The day after purchase by Turing Pharmaceuticals, CEO Martin Shkreli bumped the price of this 62-year-old drug from $18.50 to $750. and bragged about it in the press. The medication is a critical treatment for a parasitic infection that could be fatal to those with compromised immune systems due to conditions like AIDS/HIV and cancer.

These increases are called "I gotcha now pricing," befitting the twisted 'golden rule' of capitalism gone mad: "Those who have the gold, rule."

Is it any wonder medical costs continue to amaze?

BTW, Don't you love the new medication names? The good ones have at least one or two Z's and an X or two and a Q without a U. And that supper time is the best TV time to promote laxatives with live action graphics showing the bowel in action. YUMMY! Makes you want to wear  "I (heart) my Laxative." on a T-shirt.

What Harry Potter looks like dead









Then there's Daniel Radcliffe's soaring acting career after Harry Potter, landing the role of a dead person in Swiss Army Man. really. It's the best dead role since Weekend With Bernie. Danial is dead from the first scene to the last and in it, he farts amazing, miraculous farts, and saves a life! Yep, that's true too in the movie.

Next thing you know, Missouri will pass a law that allows people to carry concealed guns without a permit. See? The apocalypse. (Late news flash... the Gov did not sign the bill into law. We are saved!)



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