This week we're diving headfirst into the beauty labels that leave us puzzled, the shocking decline in Americans' love for strolling, and the mystifying vanishing act of Greyhound bus stations. Enjoy!
America's Love Affair with Walking Hits a Pothole
Well, it seems like America's love affair with walking has hit a rough patch, and the numbers don't lie. According to a recent report, the decline in good old-fashioned strolling has been nothing short of staggering.
Now, you might wonder why this matters. After all, walking is not just good for your health, but it's also the OG form of zero-emissions travel. So, it's like a two-for-one deal – you get exercise and save the planet, all while putting one foot in front of the other. Not too shabby, right?
But here's the shocker: the number of annual average daily walking trips in the contiguous U.S. plummeted by a jaw-dropping 36% between 2019 and 2022. That's right, folks, a 36% nosedive in leisurely strolls. In every nook and cranny of the country, people are choosing to walk less, with declines of at least 20% everywhere.
Sure, the rate of decline slowed a bit, going from -16% in 2019-2020 to -6% in 2021-2022, but it's still a massive drop. We're talking about going from approximately 120 million walking trips in 2019 to fewer than 80 million in 2022.
How do they measure this, you ask? They use fancy data from mobile devices, vehicle GPS systems, and more. And just to be clear, a "walking trip" is any journey taken on foot that spans more than 800 feet.
Now, which cities are leading the walking game? New York City takes the crown with 390 walking trips per 1,000 people in 2022, followed by Orlando, Las Vegas, and San Diego. But spare a thought for Portland, Boise, and Ogden, who find themselves tied for last place with just 220 trips per 1,000 people.
But it's not all doom and gloom. Los Angeles, San Diego, and Modesto, California, decided to be rebels and saw an increase in walking trips in 2022 compared to the previous year. Their secret? Probably that pleasant weather they have!
Here's the plot twist: "Active transportation" (that's walking and biking) made up only 10% of overall trips in 2022, down from 14% in 2019. Meanwhile, driving is only 4% below 2019 levels, proving once again that America is a nation of car enthusiasts.
So, what's behind this decline in our love for walking? Blame it on the pandemic, remote work, or perhaps the downtown recovery story – who knows? But one thing's clear: if we want more people to get their steps in, we need an all-hands-on-deck strategy involving safety, transit, land use, and more. Let's get America walking again! 🚶♂️🚶♀️🌆
Greyhound's Great Vanishing Act
Well, well, well, it seems Greyhound bus stations are playing a game of hide-and-seek, and they've enlisted an investment firm with a reputation for newspaper-nabbing to help them vanish.
Greyhound, the iconic symbol of intercity bus travel in the USA, is packing its bags and relocating to the outskirts of town, leaving downtown real estate developers drooling. These stations, often brimming with architectural and cultural charm, are now up for grabs.
But here's the kicker: Greyhound's passengers, a lively mix of budget-conscious wanderers, are left high and dry. No more strolling through charming stations with a hint of history; they're stuck waiting at improvised outdoor pickup points or trekking to less-than-convenient spots to catch their ride. The struggle is real, my friends.
So, who's the mastermind behind this real estate escapade? It's none other than Twenty Lake Holdings, a subsidiary of Alden Global Capital, the same folks who made headlines for acquiring and gutting American newspapers faster than you can say "stop the presses." Coincidence? I think not.
FirstGroup, like a game of hot potato, acquired Greyhound in 2021 and then promptly passed it on to German transport company FlixBus for a cool $172 million. But here's the twist in this wild ride: FirstGroup decided to hang onto the stations until Twenty Lake swooped in to claim them.
As for what Twenty Lake has to say about all this, well, they're as silent as a library during a power outage. They are not available for comment. And neither is Greyhound nor FlixBus.
So there you have it. Greyhound stations are making their great escape, and an investment firm with a penchant for acquiring and dismantling is pulling the strings. It's like a real-life game of Monopoly, and the bus stations are the prime properties everyone's after. Stay tuned for the next episode of "The Great Greyhound Getaway." 🚌🏢💼
Beauty Labels Decoded
Hey there, beauty buffs! Ever wondered what those fancy words like "clean," "natural," and "chemical-free" really mean on your cosmetic labels?
Here's the scoop: those words might as well be written in invisible ink when it comes to telling you what's actually inside that bottle of magic potion.
Why should you care? Well, picture this: you're on a quest for the perfect skincare routine, but there's nothing stopping those sneaky manufacturers from slapping on misleading labels to lure you in. It's like trying to find a unicorn in a forest of regular horses!
Now, as our planet-loving hearts turn towards sustainable shopping, we've started asking questions like, "What on Earth are 'forever chemicals'?" and "Do these ingredients mess with our endocrine system?" But guess what? There's not much of a watchdog guarding the beauty realm in the U.S.
The FDA is basically playing hide and seek when it comes to pre-approving cosmetics and labels. So the responsibility falls on your lovely shoulders to pick products that won't make your skin throw a tantrum.
Let's talk about the word "clean." It sounds great, but it's like trying to catch a slippery fish. When you see it on a label, you gotta channel your inner detective and start asking questions. Does "clean" mean it's free of phthalates? Or perhaps it's hiding undisclosed fragrances? Maybe it's steering clear of formaldehyde releasers? The word "clean" is like a beauty riddle waiting to be solved.
And don't get us started on "natural." It's a nice word, sure, but to get that lovely cream into a jar, all those ingredients go through a wild transformation. So, in reality, everything in your beauty stash is kind of like a glam science experiment.
Oh, and "chemical-free"? That's just another marketing unicorn. Because guess what? Everything in a cosmetic is a chemical! Even soap is made from a magical chemical reaction.
So, what's a savvy beauty shopper to do? Well, skip the marketing mumbo-jumbo and take a peek at the ingredients list. The good stuff should be front and center. And if you can, give those products a little test run. Your skin knows best!
And here's a little sneak peek into the future: next June, the FDA is planning to drop a list of allergens that must be boldly labeled on cosmetics. That could be a game-changer, making manufacturers think twice about what they put in those pretty bottles.
So, until then, remember that the world of beauty is like a glamorous mystery novel. You've got to read between the lines and be your own beauty detective. Happy beautifying, folks! 🌟💄✨
For small Peeps
Rudolph-The-Red-Nosed-Reindeer: The Musical
Get ready to relive the heartwarming tale of RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER, but this time, it's leaping off the screen and onto the stage in all its live-action glory!
The story is an adventure that'll tug at your heartstrings and remind you that being different is what makes you truly special. It's a tale that speaks to the misfit in all of us, and who doesn't love a story like that during the holiday season?
This spectacular show is based on the beloved animated television special "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer." It's been brought to life on stage under the creative genius of Jeff Frank and First Stage, with a script adaptation by Robert Penola. Plus, there's some magical orchestration by William C. White that'll have you tapping your feet and humming along to those familiar tunes.
So, don't miss out on this wonderful holiday tradition! Grab your family and friends, and come experience the magic of RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER: THE MUSICAL.
Let the holiday festivities begin! 🦌🎄🎶
The Palace Theater
61 Atlantic Street
Stamford, CT 06901
Thanks for reading the entire list.
See you next week!