Chai, September

No, the post is not about Chai Tea. Yes, it is a play on “Hi, September” as it is my first post of the month.

The post title also refers to the fact that the product of the month and the day is 18 (nine times two). In Hebrew, every letter has a numerical value. The sum of that value for the letters in the word “Chai”–the Hebrew word for “life” (חיים, in עִבְרִית; the toast “L’Chaim” means “to life”)–is 18. Many Jews, even those of us who are not religious but are solely of Jewish ancestry and are OCD math nerds, believe that 18 is almost a holy number because of its association with the Hebrew word for life.

One manifestation of my OCD is to use the number 18 as a basis for making decisions. (Avoiding the number 13 is also part of my behavior.) When I had multiple clients in my baseball operations/player personnel consulting business I ordered uniform tops for each team with my name and the number 18. I would like to show you one of those jerseys, but this blog is still anonymous, technically.

That’s more information than you want or need about me. Oh, count the number of stars used as a divider in my blog posts.


Yesterday, Disaffected Musings received more views on a day without a post than the average number of views for all days from February 1 to July 31 of this year. The average number of views for the last two weeks of August was 68 percent higher than the February-July average. I grant that the six-month average is a bit misleading because March and May did not have a normal number of posts. Still, 68 percent is a very significant increase.

The average for the end of August basically equaled that of the best six-month stretch in the history of the blog, October, 2020 through March, 2021. I will not break a butterfly upon a wheel or look a gift horse in the mouth; I will just say Thanks.


From a recent tweet in my Twitter feed:


August 24: California bans sale of new gasoline-powered cars

August 30: California asks Californians to avoid charging electric vehicles due to electricity shortage


Truth is stranger than fiction, indeed. EVs are not the answer and are certainly not the only answer.

In that vein, here is a funny photo sent to me by David Banner (not his real name):



OK, Tesla doesn’t manufacture vans. The picture is still funny.


Speaking of Tesla, this piece is one of many reporting that some Tesla owners in Norway–land of the EV–have “begun a hunger strike in the hopes of bringing attention to a long list of alleged quality issues with their luxury vehicles.” Truth and fiction…


I am thinking about writing a few posts called If I Had To…These would be what vehicle I would pick if I were forced to select from a group that I would normally not consider, like Porsches or 4-door sedans.

I hesitate to call this a series as I might publish only two or three such posts. I also will NOT pick from among SUVs or pickup trucks. Sorry, pickup truck fans, but they have always had zero interest to me. They all look like a small box on top of a big box on top of wheels.

These posts would only show modern vehicles, say from this century, so the following would be out. This would have been the subject of a Hall of Very Good Cars post if I were continuing the series.


See the source image


This is a Rover P5B; this version of the P5 was built from 1967 to 1973. By the way, Rover called the car a coupé. I’m sure I have written this before, but I believe that the original distinction between coupes and sedans was the amount of interior volume, not the number of doors. BMW currently sells a 4-door car called a Gran Coupe.

I have been fond of the looks of the P5B ever since seeing one as the featured car on an episode of Wheeler Dealers. Mike Brewer described the car as having “rakish lines.”

The cars were powered by the 3.5-liter V-8 for which Rover acquired the rights to produce from Buick in 1965 and used until the 1990s. This motor had gross output ratings–how such metrics were reported until the change to net ratings in the early 1970s–of 181 HP/226 LB-FT of torque.

The heart wants what it wants.


I probably care less than you do about the status of the repairs to the Z06. Some parts were delivered on August 29th, but not all of them. The last of the necessary parts are scheduled to be delivered in a window from September 8th to……….September 22nd.

An irony in all of this is by the time I actually dispose of the Z06, I will have been a Corvette owner for more than ten years, but a Corvette driver for less than ten. I am so done with that car.









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Thought Provoking Thursday

It should be obvious that I hope my blog is thought provoking almost every day. A quasi-plea: while I do not and will not have a Fack Fucebook account, I would not object if those of you who do would post the main link to the blog ( or links to specific posts on the “platform.” As I have recounted, my mother used to recite a Polish saying, which when translated into English was, “If you need the thief, you take him down from the gallows.” I am just asking; if you feel this “request” is hypocritical, then feel free to ignore and/or let me know you feel that way.


I was going to call today’s post “Fish Or Cut Bait.” I would have then written that I really wanted to call the post “Shit Or Get Off The Pot,” but that I did not want to use “profanity” in a post title.

Without getting into specifics or naming names, I know people who engage in Analysis To Paralysis. EVERYTHING has diminishing marginal utility, though, often to the point of having zero or even negative marginal benefit.

One can never really have all of the facts. One criticism of the classical economic model is that agents (people, firms, etc.) can never really optimize behavior because they can’t know everything. Famous economist Herbert Simon introduced the idea of “Satisficing.” He applied it to the behavior of firms, but it also–obviously–applies to individual behavior. After all, businesses are just collections of individuals.

Classical economic theory assumes that firms attempt to maximize profits, but the ideas associated with satisficing question this assumption. A satisficing firm is not attempting to maximize anything, but it is trying to achieve an acceptable level of a single objective or an acceptable mix of other objectives, of which profit is only one. It represents a solution to the problem of not being able to establish an optimal decision regarding business decision-making since an “optimal” decision cannot be determined.

As I have written, I firmly believe that time is more valuable than money, especially when one reaches my age. My time is finite, but I can almost always figure out a way to acquire more money. For example, not that I anticipate this scenario will occur (and certainly hope that it doesn’t), but I could decide to collect my Social Security retirement benefits if I found myself in a financial bind. I am 62, the minimum age for collecting those payments.

All this being said, I am not advocating acting impulsively and without thought as one’s primary decision-making paradigm. All I am saying is that EVERYTHING has limits, including analysis and thought. At some point you have to Fish Or Cut Bait, Shit Or Get Off The Pot.


“Fish Or Cut Bait” would also have applied to getting the Hall of Very Good Cars series started. I am 99% sure that I will publish that series concurrently with Threes And Sevens, which has only five posts remaining, anyway.

I am not saying this car will be included in the Hall of Very Good Cars, but I have been fascinated by it ever since seeing the episode of Wheeler Dealers where the car was featured.


See the source image


No, your eyes are not deceiving you. Yes, this car–a Rover P5B–has four doors. Interestingly though (OK, maybe it’s only interesting to me), the car is called a Coupé. I believe the original distinction between a coupe and a sedan had to do with interior volume and not the number of doors.

The stock engine for this car was a small displacement, 3.5 liter/215 cubic-inch, aluminum V-8. Maybe I should have written aluminium. This was the Buick engine used in the “Senior Compact” line for Buick, Oldsmobile and Pontiac from 1961 through 1963. Rover acquired the tooling to the engine in 1965 (General Motors discontinued production after the 1963 model year) and used it in at least one of their vehicles until 2006. Rover also sold the engine to companies like Morgan, TVR and Triumph.

Something about the lines of the P5B is just mesmerizing to me. The example in the Wheeler Dealers episode also had a similar paint scheme to the one shown, a light color roof over a darker body.

Anyway, as the list of Hall of Very Good Cars continues to grow, at some point I will also have to Fish Or Cut Bait, Shit Or Get Off The Pot. As always, I welcome thoughtful comments.







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Monday Musings

First, I am aware that at least one website uses the name Monday Musings. Of course, it is not my intention to infringe on that site in any way. This blog is not named Monday Musings, but given the blog name and my affinity for alliteration, calling Monday posts Monday Musings seems fitting.


Bill James wrote on at least one occasion that many, if not most, people become parodies of themselves as they age. (Hey, if you know someone famous, drop their name into your blog as often as you like.) I believe that concept applies to both major American political parties. They have existed for so long unchallenged in their stranglehold on government that they have become (bad) parodies of governance.


One of my favorite episodes of Wheeler Dealers was about a car like this:

See the source image

From a picture of a Rover P5B. I am not normally a fan of four-door cars, but this one has a great look, in my opinion. The P5B (supposedly, the “B” stands for Buick as Rover continued using the small V-8 engine they licensed from them) was produced from 1967 to 1973 with a total production of about 20,000.

Americans accustomed to muscle cars think of large displacement V-8 engines, but V-8s of much smaller displacement have been used in automobiles. For example, the Fiat 8V of the 1950s was powered by a 2-liter V-8, which is similar to the displacement of most 4-cylinder engines today. From 1974 to 1986, Ferrari produced a 2-liter/121 cubic-inch V-8. (Have to keep Bill Stephens happy.)


Time and Effort

My time and my effort