Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Tastes richer, less filling.

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Hands-free Fast Food Holder

Accelerate, Brake, and Burger
  (+3, -1)
(+3, -1)
  [vote for,

I grew up in Houston, the world leader in car culture nastiness (which also includes beating LA as the smog capitol of the US).

Due to Houston's hot, humid weather and endless seas of suburbia, pretty much everyone in Houston drives everywhere, usually in a large SUV. Believe it or not, they actually want to expand Interstate 10 to 22 lanes!

A bit less surprising is the fact that Houston has also earned the distinction of being the "Fattest City" in America (which probably means it's the fattest in the world as well) because Houstonians also eat out more than any other city.

The combination of these two factors means that Houstonians probably eat more in their cars than any other city as well.

With all the distractions facing drivers today (radio/cd, cell phone, mini car theaters...) the last thing Houstonians need is to have their hands occupied with their food during all of this. I propose cars be installed with a robotic arm which holds one's hamburger (or burrito, or whatever) out of the way while driving, and raises it to mouth level at the press of a pedal on the floorboard. (see very crudely drawn diagram link)

While you may think this won't work for those who drive standard, in Houston traffic it's not very likely anyone will need to shift gears anyway. :)

utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002

(?) Crude Diagram http://www.ticam.ut...tz/burgerholder.gif
another really bad freehand mouse drawing [utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002]

22 LANES!?!?!? http://www.cechoust...1/perspectives.html
indeed... [admin: Link is dead] [utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

America's Fattest Cities http://abcnews.go.c...fattest_cities.html
Can't spell Houstonians without TON [utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Eating Out Capitol of the World http://www.usatoday...re/1998/t1002ho.htm
I actually kinda like this part of Houston... [utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Robotic arm, NOT dispenser http://web.mit.edu/.../dec06/monkeys.html
Monkey controls robotic arm via Internet. [1kester, Apr 29 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

"Car Culture" college course http://www.uwsp.edu...g100/CarCulture.htm
car culture, consumer culture, TV culture--Duh [1kester, Apr 29 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Steering Wheel Spike http://www.halfbake...ering-Wheel_20Spike
Similar to the side-effect of this idea. [half, Apr 29 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Feed bag http://www.theonion...at-more-move,14238/
[DIYMatt, Nov 18 2014]


       uh, bliss... I think you missed my point.   

       Car culture is certainly a problem which extends beyond Houston (especially in America). I just included a few anecdotes to demonstrate how Houston is perhaps the most absurd manifestation of this problem, and advised an equally absurd solution to one of the many problems car culture creates. There's no disrespect to the diversity of the 1/2B intended at all.   

       BTW- People DO live pretty differently from one city to the next. Surely you know that from all your travels. Houstonians may be the same kind of people as people anywhere else, but their unique situation causes many to make lifestyle choices which many others would view as unpleasant.
utexaspunk, Apr 28 2002

       Cultural diferences from city to city are not the point here, UTP. But you obviously haven't been reading other 1/2 Bakery notations recently, or you'd have known that everyone has been converting to caulk guns and coiled pneumatic lines to deliver blackened "swordfish" (sic) paste, condiments and peanut butter delectables directly to the end consumer. So forget about difficult-to-engineer robotic arms; just run a coil of air line from the driver's seat back to the trunk and install a couple of CO2 pressurized stainless steel tanks filled with pureed fish taco, hamburger surprise, or peanut butter burrito ala Houston, and cruise the sweet Southern nights away in pure blissfulness, sucking away at your pneumatic gravy gun. Don't worry if you can't afford to install the pneumatic system in your low-rider today--or if you just want a want a portable version you can take with you to the beach, to basketball games, or out for a day of fun at your local oil platform --try the easy-to-afford, quick-refill caulk gun version of our fine foods! It's a go-everywhere Dixie delight!
jurist, Apr 28 2002

       "...Car culture is certainly a problem ..."   

       Hm.  Didn't know it was a 'problem.'  I'm always learning something here, I tell you.
bristolz, Apr 28 2002

       Pitchforks and torches!
phoenix, Apr 29 2002

       See the link for a college class about "car culture." I find it a bit absurd that nitwits would question use of the phrase, as it's been in use for some time.   

       Also, [UTP], like a true rhetor, drew upon samples to help enlighten and give substance to their idea. They describes some characteristics identify their people. To think that people, in general, are (or should be) homogeneous is racist and sexist, [BM].   

       No, [po] presented quite a different idea (storage and freshness problems aside) and [jurist], a monkey can control a robotic arm to grab food (see link), so the technology is feasibly in place and much, much more realistic and advanced than puree.   

       The trolls are out today.
1kester, Apr 29 2002

       Yeah, sure, you Tennecatitians are always saying stuff like that.
spartanica, Apr 29 2002

       Maybe I misread the drawing and the idea but it seems that this is only a wee bit friendlier than the spiked steering wheel idea that's been bandied about once or twice. This could at least provide you with your last meal...as it kills you.
half, Apr 29 2002

       I've worked in Houston, and I sympathise with utexaspunk's views. But surely letting people eat in their cars will just encourage them to drive more. Outlawing eating in cars would be a far superior way to reduce traffic problems, as your typical overweight Houstonian would face a difficult dilemma indeed if forced to choose between eating and driving.   

       Hey, can I mention gun control?
pottedstu, Apr 29 2002

       you'll end up a shotted spew
po, Apr 29 2002

       1kester, who you callin' 'nitwit'?
waugsqueke, Apr 29 2002

       the diagram is now a 404 error
andrewm, Oct 19 2002

       Just what everyone needs! Another pedal to push... that way when they get flustered in trafic they can get stabbed in the face with a burrito right before they rear-end someone:)
The Dude, Dec 11 2002

       er, Houston, you have a problem!
pashute, Nov 17 2014


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