Ideas for a Better America

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9780960489404: Ideas for a Better America
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An 80-page, 8-by-11-inch paperback with 19 full color illustrations, 13 two-color illustrations, 7 black and white illustrations, 2 graphs, 7 charts, 2 maps, 2 ads, 4 poems, a country song, a newspaper and a righteous jukebox.

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From the Back Cover:

Who is Bert Backerrat? What is a Groucho? When do you whistle "Dixie"? Where is Runny Nose, Wyoming? Why are so many good things considered carcinogenic? How do you change your birthday? The answers to these questions and more in Ideas for a Better America, by Natty and Natalie Bumppo.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Suggested sandwich:

Want to make a million? Invent a sandwich, set up a sandwich stand, then another, and soon you have a nationwide chain. The key to success is not the sandwich, but the packaging, and the marketing. Can you compete with McDonald's? Can you compete with McDonald's! What's the matter with McDonald's today? It's too God-damned slow, that's what! You have to wait to get a McDonaldburger. That's because they serve fish, fries, cheeseburgers, double cheese, Big Macs, milkshakes and Mcbreakfast. They'll even hold the lettuce (that upsets us, because the more attention they give every little thing, the less attention they give the specialty of the house, the original McDonaldburger). It is not economical to hold hundreds of McDonaldburgers in reserve, ready to pop into your impatient paws before they cool, when other customers might want something else.

If you can concentrate on just one product (oh, you can also serve Coke - one size only! - milk and coffee; no 7-Up!), you can be the fastest food in town. The harried hungries will flock like sheep through your glass doors.

A sandwich you could start with is the Groucho. It's a simple, open-faced sandwich - a slab of American cheese melted onto a slice of Vienna bread, with lots of black pepper sprinkled on it. That's it. (Hold the pepper? Go home and make your own sandwich!) People love them. We've tried it on all our friends. You can make one for less than a dime, and sell it for a quarter, including tax.

(A Groucho? The name has nothing to do with the Marx brothers. My daughter invented the sandwich inadvertently one day when she slapped a slice of half-melted cheese onto a slice of white bread and took a bite. "What are you eating?" I asked from across the room. "Grilled cheese," she mumbled with her mouth full. "Groucho?!" I asked, bewildered, not having understood her.)

Once it's caught on, you can introduce the Super Groucho: Substitute rye for Vienna and Colby for American (price 30 cents). And for another nickel, you can even get a slice of tomato. Mmmmm mmmmm, mmmmm. We've got you hooked. The price for a Super is soon up to 45 cents (55 cents w/tom). Now we'll hold the pepper. Even put on a pickle. Next, the Groucho Supreme - half a bagel, toasted on the crust side, slice of tomato (to cover the hole in the bagel), then the cheese (and the pepper, of course). Sixty-five cents.

Then you can really diversify: Fillet o' fish and slaw side dish. Salad bar and breast o' gar. Orange Crush, hoecake mush. Even a (shudder) hamburger for the finicky brat in your family.

Eventually you will be just as slow - and just as rich - as all the other fast food chains.

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Natty Bumppo; Natalie Bumppo
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