in this country's boundless quest to turn everything (and everyone) into the equivalent dimensions of a 94oz mega slurpee, yet another once-upon-a-time-perfectly-proportioned functional daily tool has been supersized into absurdity: our crap weather friend, the umbrella.
what was once a pint-sized collapsable tanlge of cheap metal and semi-waterproof (and highly flammable) fabric has become nothing short of the overgrown brainchild of some MIT nerd's failed collaboration with the us military to produce better parachutes for the space shuttle. umbrellas are out of control- they're beyond huge. so huge that it makes the amply proportioned average american standing under them look normal-sized. i suppose all these gigantified things in our lives are supposed to make us feel better about being fat overconsuming slobs- if you're life isn't the size of an escalade and you don't get biggie fries with your lunch then something's wrong.
we're talking 15lb endangered redwood handles and canopies with a wingspan of 10 feet. some of them even have a second umbrella popping out of the top- an upper umbrella to keep the lower umbrella dry? and those little metal spikey bits poking out all around the edge? 6 inch long eye-popping-daggers-of-blindness.
these things are lethal- and those who operate them are apparently oblivious to their massive dimensions and potential to blind multiple pedestrians. these people look like they literally walked up to a poolside patio table at a resort and grabbed the sunshade umbrella (complete with crank handle) on their way to work...
to the ever-dwindling number of you still getting by (mostly dry, i might add) with the atari umbrellatron circa 1980, i salute you.
some things just aren't getting better with time-