No offense, but I can’t stand couples who go grocery shopping together. I see them every week, clogging the aisle while they ponder indistinguishable brands of soy sauce.

Seriously. What’s wrong with you people?

First of all, couldn’t you be doing two different chores instead of one? You do have a million chores like the rest of us, right? Or maybe one of you could shop while the other is working out or day-drinking or whatever. Somebody take one for the team.

And how do you get through the produce section without murdering each other? Tara and I can’t even assemble a TV stand without her wanting to stab me in the neck with an Allen wrench. Debating avocado ripeness and Triscuit flavors? No way. I like sleeping in the same bed.

So I handle the groceries – by myself – every Sunday. Because I also do most of the cooking. Tara, meanwhile, is doing the laundry, managing the finances, or running complex algorithms to coordinate our kids’ schedules. I can’t be trusted with organizational matters. And I suck at laundry. Yes, it’s possible to suck at laundry.

We adopted our divide-and-conquer strategy early on: planning our wedding. It was a masterpiece of delineated responsibility. We got married in the morning, at the Don CeSar in St. Pete, as guests sipped (or chugged) mimosas. Then, a lunch reception, a day on the beach, and a nighttime rooftop party. We each planned separate parts, largely by ourselves. I don’t recall a single argument.

Not that we haven’t had a million arguments since.  And not that I have the right to counsel anyone on their marriage.

Maybe you think were the weird ones.

Apparently, 35% of couples perpetually share their location with one another on their smartphones. 39% of people say they would use their significant other’s toothbrush. And 35% say they would like to work at the same company as their partner.

Um. No.

The more our database grows – and it’s growing almost exponentially right now – the more I realize how different we all are. Basically, most of it’s okay if you’re not hurting anybody else.

Unless you go grocery shopping with your significant other. That’s NOT okay.

Here’s what were seeing this week:

Consumer confidence dipped a little this week. After a nice streak of positive gains, our Economic Sentiment Index fell slightly in its latest reading, driven mostly by people who are worried about their personal finances. A friend and mentor of mine wondered if maybe it was because people are doing their taxes and realized things aren’t as rosy as they were last year. That strikes me as a very plausible theory.

Millennials are finally buying homes at a normal rate because people with jobs and kids buy homes. If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times: Don’t confuse generational phenomena with life stage phenomena. They may have taken a little longer to get into the home-buying mood but theories saying Millennials were going to rent for the rest of their lives were nonsense. Homeownership is climbing fast among the 18-34 crowd, even if a lot of them aren’t happy about it. Check out the chart below. Basically, the younger you are, the more likely you are to regret your home purchase. Maybe those Millennials were smart to wait.

Tumblr banned porn, their traffic fell sharply, and that kind of sucks. In December, Tumblr created a new policy to prevent adult content on the platform. As you might expect, site traffic fell sharply as a result, especially among men. Big deal, right? It’s not like there aren’t a billion places for guys to find porn. But not everyone has those options. One unintended consequence of Tumblr’s move was a major drop in traffic among the LGBTQ+ community, for whom Tumblr had represented a safe and accepting place for sex positivity among the otherwise-marginalized. Kudos to our team for identifying this trend and for handling such a delicate topic responsibly. Judge not, lest ye be judged, my friends.

Maybe everyone jumped the shark on the whole esports phenomenon. If your idea of a good time is watching other people play video games while chain-smoking Camel Lights, you would have fit in well in my freshman dorm in college. Otherwise, you’re still in a pretty niche group (even minus the Camel Lights) that doesn’t seem to be growing all that fast. Even as ESPN and others have thrown a ton of money and attention at the world of esports, it’s not moving the needle. The chart below shows reported esports viewership among Americans between age 13 and 44. Overall awareness rose a smidge over the last two years. But that’s about it.

Rewards are an increasingly popular driver of credit card usage, probably because the economy is pretty good. Not to be outdone by the super-fancy infographics in this report, the data are pretty good too. When evaluating credit cards, interest rate is still the number one criteria across the board but rewards are second, especially among men. Parents are more likely to care about the credit limit. Explicably, there’s a huge correlation between caring about credit card rewards and being a frequent traveler. That’s me.

Speaking of travel, people are growing more loyal to their favorite airlines. My guess is this is another trend explained by a friendlier economy (News Flash: Economic sentiment is a big deal, which is why we obsess about it). But people who say a particular airline is “very important” when choosing a flight has climbed over 35% since 2015. The importance of price has fallenduring that same period. In case you’re wondering, Southwest is a clear #1.

Some Crazy Random Stats of the Week

  • If stranded on a deserted island with only one person, 44% of people would bring their spouse/partner, 5% would bring a parent, and 7% would prefer to be alone. 16% would bring their pet;
  • If crystal balls were real, 24% of people would “Absolutely” want to see their future, 25% “Maybe,” and 43% “Nope, not at all”;
  • 18% of people say they would seriously consider dating a robot.

Ok then. To each their own.


Hoping you’re well.