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Location: Hamilton Square, New Jersey, United States

Tax guy, host & producer of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast, former co-host of the Wall Street Journal E-Report

Tuesday, July 11, 2006 a whole new meaning to "run down"

The running joke among my frends about Levittown (PA) is that visiting there is like stepping back into the '80's. Having a friend there (who still visits this site, I think) and hanging out there regularly in the mid-nineties, I assure you there was no shortage of black "KISS" t-shirts, mullets, wigwam socks and hair metal being played...and that was just at her house! (I keed! I keed!). However, being white trash myself in a polo shirt, I always felt right at home. So although I mock it, I've always embraced it.

But since I've been married and have been keeping busy raising a family, I don't hang out like I used to and it's been a while since I've been there. But on Sunday, the family and I crossed the Pennsylvania border and go to Mealey's to go look for children's furniture. As we leave it's approaching lunch time, so we decide to hit a local restaurant. Spotting Fuddruckers over to the left (as we're approaching Oxford Valley Mall), I say to the wife "you know, I've always wanted to go to Fuddruckers...let's check it out". So I make the left heading towards the Levittown Parkway and as we approach the restaurant, we realize it's boarded up.

With our first choice of lunch scuttled, we head over to the nearby we were going to hit the one in Hamilton anyway...and eat lunch at the McDonalds nearby instead. After McDonalds we head over to Wal-Mart and, as I'm parking, there's a car in the parking lot giving a parked car a jump. Not thinking anything of it, I pass that scene and park my car. As I'm getting ready to unstrap my son, a lady in a parked car in front of us (unrelated to the other dead car) says *her* car is having problems and asks to use my cell phone. She had two kids with her and, apparently, there were some electrical issues with the alarm as everytime she opened the door the alarm started going off...and with the sound of a battery that's about to die. I let her use my phone and we head over to Wal-Mart. As I'm walking away, the lady stops me and says, "oh you can't go in there..the store's lost power and they're not letting anyone in!"

So not only are there two cars in the parking lot without juice, but Wal-Mart's also without power. It was like a UFO had just flown overhead and all the electronic devices in the immediate area went dead.

So, to recap, within a one hour time frame in Levittown I experience:

  1. A boarded up Fuddruckers
  2. A powerless Wal-Mart
  3. A dead car in the Wal-Mart parking lot
  4. Another car with electrical issues just 20 feet away

Just when you think your Levittown joke well has run dry, the town provides you with more fodder. I love that city.

Fortunately, before the general aura of Levittown blight was able to rest upon us, we managed to escape town with full battery power, good health and an undamaged credit report.


Anonymous Darren R. Sussman said...'s all of PA. That state blows.

7/12/2006 12:58 AM  

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