I went to lunch today to talk about new business and I was abandoned by my potential client. My guest did a “no show” and yet there I was, and still hungry. Simple choice really, pout a little, pretend to be enjoying my alone time, then order a meal and a glass of wine. Done.
Since I had just been rejected, I was not at my creative best. No thoughts came to fill the void. But, ultimately, I did fill my time listening to the table next to me. These “new friends” obviously had more time to ponder the world than I had ever taken. And they talked about some things which I found interesting. So in the interests of claiming my lunch as a business expense, here is what I found interesting:
Autonomous cars… blah, blah, blah. Yes, I know, everyone has a point of view on how great/terrible they will be. But my “new friends” shared some stuff, which I found particularly interesting.
- They will be a major life changer for the aged. Too old to drive safely? Too vain to admit that you are a danger to everyone else, as well as yourself? Too drunk to say the alphabet backwards (really, who can do that anyway? I barely know if v comes before or after t) or walk a straight line? Good, get an autonomous car. Suddenly, as we are aging, we are gifted the option of getting off the sofa and into the car. We are mobile and invincible all over again. Very cool.
- Running late in a meeting but the kids have to get to soccer/piano/swimming/fill-in-the-blank practice? Who needs a nanny or (worse) an unknown Uber driver? Have the autonomous car pick them up, drop them off, recollect them, take them for an ice cream, and then home for homework. It is the “get out of parenting” card for all parents of kids of all ages.
- “Dad I am sleeping at Sam’s tonight so can I borrow the car (assuming the one with keys and a steering wheel)? “ “No. I have a better idea, take the autonomous car with its very own autonomous GPS system. We will know where you are at all times just in case…” Very clever.
- If Google purchased Ford so they could jointly build autonomous electric cars, that would be so very clever. However, would Ford’s stock price suddenly skyrocket because they are now a technology company? Or would Google’s price crash and burn because they are now in the car business? The debate being, is an autonomous car a computer on wheels or a very smart car devoid of anger management issues? Don’t worry about calling your broker; he/she has not even begun to think about this conundrum yet. Not unless he/she has also stalked my “new friends.”
So, after all of that stimuli, some awesome seafood, and a glass (actually, 2 glasses) of wine from Willamette Valley I feel completely satiated. Mentally and physically. Food for thought, indeed.