Thursday, July 15, 2010

Summer Questions

I heard the never-changing "Turkey in the Straw" on our street this afternoon, so I stepped out to watch the ice cream truck go by, and to take a picture of it. For some reason, it's been an ambition of mine (a very minor one) to take a picture of an ice cream truck, and now I have.

What are the economics of ice cream trucks anyway? That is, how can selling frozen treats to random children on suburban streets cover overhead and generate a profit? Was it a lot harder when gas was over $4 a gallon two summers ago? Is there such a thing as a hybrid ice cream truck?

Parking at an event would kick up sales, but only so many trucks can do that. Do they fight over turf? Are there really ice cream wars? (Wiki describes the Glasgow Ice Cream Wars: "The conflicts, in which vendors raided one another's vans and fired shotguns into one another's windscreens, were more violent than might typically be expected between ice-cream salesmen.")

These are summer questions that I ask myself, but which I don't want to bother finding out the answers to. Maybe it's a good topic for the Freakonomics guys.



At 7:32 AM, Blogger Nylonthread said...

Dees, have you watched "Comfort & Joy"? Akio insisted that our family sit through it recently, and while it's oddly Scottish and the humor is a bit off, the idea that there are warring factions of ice cream sellers (with cute little bunny logos) is compelling enough to give it a view. Also, the tune the trucks play won't leave your head, ever. "DO-do-do-do-DO-do, do-do-do-do-DO, do-do-do-do-DO, DO, do! Hello, Folks!"


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