As if we weren't already sufficiently hard-pressed by catastrophes, calamities, and general hoo-ha from all directions, comes this:
The sport of surfing is in turmoil after the world's largest producer of the foam blocks used to make surfboards closed down, citing over-regulation.
Polyurethane foam "blanks" produced by California-based Gordon Clark are used to make many of the world's surfboards.
Mr Clark, who helped invent the modern all-foam surfboard, says environmental regulations forced him out of business.
Fears of a global foam shortage have led to a sharp rise in board prices as surfers snap up already depleted stock.
So, what will we be able to tell the teacher in the future -- when it will be completely implausible that we're surfin' USA?