THE CRANKY OLD MAN
Random thoughts and stuff from a cranky old man. Humor (maybe), satire, and some politics, mostly stuff from a confused head.
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My Aunt Phil lived in a suburb of Philadelphia.It was farmland then, it is mostly McMansions now.Her house was on several acres and she had an in-ground swimming pool.I spent a week with Aunt Phil one summer.I think I was about twelve.I don’t remember the reason I spent this week on “The Farm” (to me it was a farm, there may have been a vegetable patch) probably my parents were on vacation and needed to pawn me off.
It would have been a boring week except for my cousin Ronnie.Ronnie was two years older than I was.I spent the week following him around like a puppy dog.
Most of the time was spent in the pool.Ronnie was able to do a full flip off the low diving board, one full turn and land straight in on his feet.It was my goal to learn to also do a flip off the low board.
I must have attempted 500 flips off that board.Everyone was completed to three quarter perfection.A three quarter flip would have me land, legs and feet stretched out, perfectly on my back.Instead of a silent swish in the water, I landed with a giant slap.Every attempt was the same, and every attempt was painful, but I was intent on learning to do a perfect flip.With Ronnie’s guidance and instruction on the last day of my visit I was eventually able to realize that I was never going to complete a full flip.It took one week for me to learn that if you try really hard and practice for a really long time, there was still some stuff that you will never be able to do.
I never tried to do a flip off a board again.
Fast forward and I had three children all participating on a swim team at a local swim club.Both my oldest son Mike and the youngest Matt were able to do one and a half flips off the low board.One and a half turns and they would land a head first swish.Every time I witnessed their diving I was taken back to my failed and painful attempts.
My daughter, Mary Beth, was on the diving team.I don’t recall if she could do a double flip, I’m pretty sure she could do a one and a half.I do remember she was a pretty good diver.She was not the best on the team as she started diving much later than several other girls, but she was graceful and she was good.
Mary Beth worked hard at diving and she was improving.Then one day while I was at work I got a call.Mary Beth slipped off a slightly wet board while practicing.She came down hard on her leg, the tibia (I think) snapped.I will not get graphic here, but it was described to me as let’s just say very friggin gruesome.She was eight weeks or more in a cast, the first week in a wheelchair, and she walked with a slight limp for over a year.
I don’t think Mary Beth ever dove again.
I never told any of my children of my week of three quarter flips.My sons could do a flip; my daughter could do a flip if the board was not wet.I don’t think that Spencer, my fifteen year old, has ever tried.
He’s pretty good at most sports.
I’m going to recommend he stay off the diving board.
Well I’ve done it again.As many times as I vow to not get into
political comments on FB, I have done it again.These comment “wars” never end and never change anyone’s opinion, and
yet I cannot help myself.This
disagreement was with a favorite very liberal blogging friend, so I will finish my point on:
CRANKY OPINION SATURDAY
I have no doubt that this blogger who
I shall not name (Carolyn) will respond in a comment.I will not respond back; keep in mind as with
all Cranky Saturday Opinions, opposing points of view are welcome…wrong, but
welcome and please, no name calling and that means you, you big stupid head!! (Not
particular battle came as I responded to a FB posting where President Clinton
makes the comment, “A great democracy does not
make it harder to vote than to buy an assault weapon.” The posting said that:
President Clinton took
down the entire Republican rational with this one sentence.
Before I start my rant I
must first establish that:
1.I believe all legally eligible voters
should vote without undue restriction or inconvenience.
3.I do not have any issue with hunters
or recreational shooters.
4.I am not an expert in current gun
regulations or voter registration rules.That has never stopped me from espousing any opinion before and it will
not stop me now.
vote in this country you must be a citizen, be over 18 years of age, and cannot
be a convicted felon.You must fill out
a registration form affirming you meet all these requirements.You do not have to actually prove you meet
these requirements.It is very easy to
vote in this country, it is very easy to vote illegally in this country.
It is easy to purchase a gun in this country, but it is much harder (in most states) than registering to vote, and you have to prove you meet the requirements. (I would favor a national law covering the purchase of guns.)
to President Clinton’s comment is that it is intellectually dishonest.It implies that there are parties in this
country which wish to make it easier to buy a gun than it is to vote.I do not accept that that is in any way the
I could just
as easily say, “A great democracy does not throw people in jail for their
religious beliefs.”It would be a true
but irrelevant statement.
I am in favor of citizens proving
they are legally eligible to vote, and I am in favor of requiring some form of
against requiring voter ID is that it will keep people from legitimately
voting. It will disenfranchise the poor
and the elderly.
get a job without a SS card.
travel in a plane without a valid photo ID.
get cable TV, water, gas or electricity without providing ID of who you are.
play at my public municipal golf course without ID.
thing in this country that does not require valid ID is registering to vote.
for no ID is that many people have a great deal of difficulty in obtaining
valid ID and they should not be left out of the voting process.
WASH…end of argument.
please tell it like it is here? Stop the talking point crap about disenfranchising
the poor and the elderly.
of citizens do not care very much about voting and any inconvenience will cause
them to not vote.
of ineligible voters DO take the
trouble to vote illegally.Many are
registered in multiple districts, many are not alive, many are fabricated and
many are not legal citizens.
that monitor the voting booths are volunteers, are retired, and many are the
same people that could not punch a chad through a hole with a pencil point. If you can find a voters name and sign on a line, you
voters who are turned off by any inconvenience are Democrat than Republican.
voters vote Democrat than Republican.
favor easy voter registration and are against voter ID.Republicans favor proof that a voter is legal
and approve of the use of voter ID.
This issue is
party divisive because the issue is all about maximizing votes for a given
Democrats favor simple registration without verification because they stand to gain more from illegal voting than Republicans. If it was the other was around, Democrats would all be on their high horse complaining about the travesty of illegal votes cast against them.
I believe legal
registration which is accurate but not cumbersome is fair. I believe every vote
can and should be validated.We live in
a computer age for crispy sake; it should not be that difficult. The preceding was the opinion of a
cranky old man and not necessarily that of management…Mrs. Cranky.
* I did not vote for President Clinton in ether election, in retrospect I think he is charming, very intelligent and was a darn good President...except for that BJ thing, but that's none of my business.
is better with directions than anyone I have ever known.If you need to go anywhere in New Jersey, she
can guide you to your destination.When
one of the step-cranks calls for directions this is the typical phone conversation
you? By the Exxon station…that would put you on the corner of West Oak and
Jennings Place.You need to go three
blocks and turn right at Waverly.That
will take you right to rt.28…there will be a Kay Jewelry story on the right
corner and a tire dealer across the street; Bridgestone I think.Go south on 28 about 7 miles and turn right
at the dry cleaners.That will be Lake
Avenue.You just go 4 miles and turn
left on Rector.The 7-11 you are looking
for will be on your left across from the McDonalds and next to the Hallmark
Why is it
when I need something in the house I get minimal directions?
“Hey Kare, do we have any Q-tips?”
“OK, which room?”
“The bathroom of course.”
“Ours or the guest bath?”
“OURS!!” (Stated in a way that I now know I
probably pass those Q-tips every day.)
I am now
forced to find the Q-tips on my own.One
more question will bring derisive comments and great shame upon me.
As I search
every cabinet in the bathroom which requires moving multiple tubes, brushes and
cleansers out of the way, Mrs. Cranky hears every attempt.
with timing that is better than a Joe Montana to Jerry Rice post route, just
before I try the final place where a Q-tip could possibly be stored, she
hollers from down stairs,
“Oh for crispy sake, they’re in the
medicine cabinet.You couldn’t find a
phone in a phone booth if you were spotted three tries!”
you just tell me, 'The Q-tips are upstairs in our bathroom in the medicine
cabinet'you always give your kids spot
on perfect directions?"
“Because,” she tells me with no apparent emotion in her voice, “I just like fucking with you!”
Many of us
have experienced the sudden terror of a missing child.Turn your head for a minute on the playground
or on the beach and bang…missing child.Part of your brain knows the toddler will turn up playing somewhere
quite innocently, another part imagines all kinds of horrible scenarios. Mark refers to it as DEFCON-3 panic.
But how do
you lose a child inside your home?How
can a toddler simply disappear inside the house?Spencer managed to do just that when he was
was in our dining room while his mom and I
were preparing to walk into town to do some shopping.I went upstairs to get some money, his mom
grabbed his stroller from the mud room, and he was gone.
had a front door and a back door.Both
were still locked.Spencer had to be
inside.I called…no answer.His mom called…no answer.I yelled…no answer.His mom yelled…no answer.WTH!
upstairs and checked every room and every closet.I checked under every bed, all the while
calling his name.His mom checked the
basement and every room downstairs, all the while calling his name.
nowhere to be found.Spencer had to be
in the house, but he was nowhere.He did
not answer any of our calls.What the
hell do you do?Call the police?His mom decided to panic. I was contemplating
the same.How do you lose a three year
old within your house all in less than sixty seconds?
As I started
to join Spencer’s mother in panic, I noticed the door from the dining room to
our foyer was not completely open against the foyer wall as it usually was.It was stopped from its usual position by a
pair of tiny shoes.I quick pulled back the
door and behind it, attached to the tiny pair of
shoes was our three year old, Spencer.
“What were you doing behind
there?Didn’t you hear us calling?”
“When you go uptairs I behind the
door.When you yell I tot it funny.When you yell real loud, I scared.Afraid you mad me.”
there was too much yelling in that house, so much that it scared a little
boy.The yelling scared him so much because
he associated it with anger, not fear.
Our yelling in panic made him continue to hide.
I know how
he felt.There was a lot of yelling in
that house.It was usually out of anger. It was
usually over something as silly as forgetting something or not putting a dish
away.It was an unrealistic, unpredictable, out-of-control, over-the-top anger that came from a
disease which his mother inherited from her mother. It was anger that no three year old could understand. Spencer knew that when that anger was around, it was
better to stay hidden.
when we found Spencer.We laughed from
the silliness of the situation, we laughed out of relief, but the condition
which caused him to fear our panic because he interpreted the yelling as
irrational anger was not a laughing matter.
Spencer is a
teenager now, living with his mother four hours away.I am sure the instances of irrational anger
have not abated.Hopefully he now
understands it is from a sickness that is not his fault and he need not fear it.
probably still does his best to avoid it, even when it happens behind closed doors.
This is not
the first time I have gone on a rant on this subject, but here I go again.Experts, surveys and crap (I so want to say
‘Oh MY’ but I am struggling to remain a heterosexual.) Is there any end to
stupid worthless surveys and studies that prove absolutely nothing?
the local TV News bobbleheads reported on an interesting study.Some numbnutz somehow conducted a study which
proved that the fans of a losing football team eat less healthy than fans of
the winning team.
How was this
Why was this
Who gives a
What is any
one supposed to do with this information?
been done ad nausea determining that people that are depressed do not eat as
healthy as people that are not depressed.It does not take a huge leap to assume the fans of a losing team are
more depressed than the fans of the winning team, so why was this study needed.
I am going
to guess that Brides who are left at the altar eat less healthy than Brides
who are not left at the altar.Students
that flunk out of school eat less healthy than the Valedictorian. People who drive crappy cars eat less healthy
than those who own a Corvette.
(add any unsuccessful endeavor here) eat less healthy than people who (add any
successful endeavor here.)
Stop it with
these stupid worthless studies which are fake, made up nonsense crap that does
not go past a peer review because they are so silly.They serve only to allow the morning news
nitwits to make a lame joke segue between a fiery school bus crash and the
I think the
problem is every year thousands of psychology students need a thesis to get
their doctorate, and all the relevant topics have been taken.
interests of science here are my suggestions for future bull shit studies:
lines in the carpet mean you’re going to get lucky?
Do dogs wag
their tails because they are happy, or is it a form of canine Tourette’s?
Why do birds
sing so gay and lovers await the break of the day
why do they fall in love?
Dr. Phil get all his resources?
wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
Is a Diner
really a Diner if the waitress does not call you Honey?
who exercise more than two hours a day lose more weight than people who eat
donuts and then purge?
happier, dog people or cat people?
Who put the
ram in the ram-a-lam-a-ding-dong?
Is there a
woman alive above the age of 35 who has not seen every episode of “Sex and the
City” at least five times?
people who read this blog eat unhealthy food?
The divorce rate in this country is disturbing. In many cases the cause of break-ups is unrealistic expectations by the husband, and an inability to understand how to deal with a new wife. New husbands-to-be should get a set of instructions before the wedding.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE 2012-SW (available en Espanol)
Congratulations on your new 2012 Standard Wife or your 2012-SW.Your 2012 –SW is very durable and if maintained properly should last a lifetime.
The 2012-SW comes fully equipped to take care of many functions which you are ill-equipped to perform.These can include cooking, organizing, remembering important dates, procreation and child rearing.
Your 2012-SW does not respond well to vocal commands.To get your SW model to reach peak performance it is recommended that you lubricate well with good wine, sparkly things, occasional flowers and sweet talk.
Some models may be slightly defective and will react negatively when you fail to properly apply the above lubrication.This defect may manifest in screechy harsh vocal output.It is the manufacturer’s recommendation that you comply immediately to whatever the harsh vocal output requests.A firm whack on the vocal mechanism sometimes will successfully correct the output issue, but this is a temporary fix which will ultimately cause your 2012-SW to completely break down beyond any repair.YOU ARE HIGHLY DISCOURAGED FROM WHACKING THE SW VOCAL MECHINISM!!
There is no refund for malfunctioning 2012-SWs, however they may be partially insured through a Pre-nup policy.This police is recommended.
Your 2012-SW is especially well suited for procreation and post- procreation functions.She can operate for long periods of time with little or no sleep.You will be required to show appreciation for this function and provide occasional sleep relief.
We cannot stress enough that though your 2012-SW appears very durable the SW is very sensitive!You MUST handle with care and show constant appreciation.
Many 2012-SWs will demand more shoes and other attire than you might think is necessary.Do not attempt to limit shoes and attire, you will fail and it will reduce the effectiveness of your 2012-SW.
Your 2012-SW is fully equipped to perform to your satisfaction in the bedroom.Do NOT attempt to operate this function without adequate warm up; when finished, a substantial cool down time is also recommended.
Your 2012-SW comes with a date of production and a date of officially becoming a SW.Remember, and celebrate these dates.Failure to acknowledge production and SW dates with dinner out and or presents will cause temporary malfunction of your 2012-SW.
DOs and DON’Ts
Do - periodically tune up your 2012-SW with dinners out, wine and kind words.
Don’t – Attempt high volume vocal commands.
Do – Stroke your SW for high performance.
Don’t – Shake or in any way treat your 2012-SW harshly.
Do – Occasionally attempt to assist in what you consider normal SW functions.Your 2012-SW will do these functions over but your attempts will be rewarded.
Don’t – Try to decorate any room other than the basement.The 2012-SW has no override button in the decorating function.
Do – Wear whatever outfits your SW suggests.She is programmed to be expert in this area.
Q - My brother’s 2010-SW gained several pounds and has marks on her abdomen after the procreation function.Has this been eliminated in the 2012-SW.
Ans – No.Weight gain is typical.In some models it is permanent.We find that most husbands still find their SW to be as HOT as when new, even with a few extra pounds.We call the marks “stretch marks.”They are typical and should not be considered to be a defect.
Q – I have heard that some SW models are overly demanding and sometimes are not completely logical.
Ans – Yes…Deal with it!
Q – Is it true some previous model SWs would obey all verbal commands without question?
Ans – Yes, however these models have been out of production for years and when they did exist, they often did not perform in the bedroom function.
Please remember that with proper care and tune-ups, your 2012-SW should give you a lifetime of satisfaction.
Vibrating shoes to keep
elderly upright – Any of my old friends who remember
Electronic Football and the vibrating field will appreciate this breakthrough.Might work for old people.
tapeworm to lose weight is still not a good idea – Yeah, those worms must have a lot of calories per serving.
Bare chests liven up Austria's election campaign – If we had
this criterion we might finally elect a woman President.
Department to sue Texas over voter ID law – Drive a
car…need ID, fly anywhere…need ID, open a bank account, a telephone account, a
utilities account, go to school, see a doctor, get insurance, rent a car, go to
the rest room…need ID!Vote? Sure, you
Georgia elementary school bookkeeper
credited with calming armed suspect – I bet this
lady did not expect to be a hero this day, but she sure was!
Fans outraged that Ben Affleck will
play Batman in new movie– People
have so much time for this stuff.Is this a great country or what?
Pennsylvania woman turns up alive after
her own funeral – Now that is awkward!