Tag Archives: humour

Presidential Curmudgeon Portraits

 

A man can dream, can’t he?

If the United States can elect its oldest president, a man with no political background or experience, why can’t it elect a true elderly curmudgeon?  I can envision the day when, despite the (incorrect) prognoses of all the pundits, I sit in the Oval Office and determine whicih presidential portraits I get to hang on the walls.

I decided that I would pick a curmudgeonly president from each century.

The eighteenth century gives me only two choices – George Washington and John Adams.  Adams is the obvious choice.  He had no slaves; he considered his wife, Abigail, as his equal and he was, by all accounts, a true pain-in-the-ass.  The result is immediate elevation to curmudgeon status.

Presidential1

Although the nineteenth century has many choices, there really is only one:  Lincoln.  Abraham Lincoln was affected by depression, had a true black sense of humor and was, as I have often said, the greatest prose poet of the nineteenth century.  Alternate choices may include Jackson, Cleveland and McKinley but these pale in comparison.  Nope, Lincoln is my choice.

Presdential2

The twentieth century also has many choices.  Perhaps TR or Coolidge or LBJ but, again, they really don’t qualify as curmudgeons (in my humble opinion).  My first and clear choice is Harry S Truman (no period after the S. The S stood for nothing; Truman felt the need to have a middle initial.)  Despite the critics who point to his dropping of the A-bomb on Hiroshima, Truman accomplished many achievements during his presidency (or presidentiary, as Will Ferrell pointed out playing the role of George W. Bush);

  • Creation of the UN and NATO
  • The Truman Doctrine (which stopped the communist threat to Greece and Turkey)
  • The Marshall Plan
  • The Berlin Airlift
  • Establishment of the NSC, CIA and NSA
  • Ended racial segregation in the US armed forces
  • Legislation to allow immigration of 200,000 refugees from World War II

He also had time to pen and mail (by hand) a letter to Paul Hume, who was critical of his daughter’s concert performance.

“Some day I hope to meet you.  When that happens you’ll need a new nose, a lot of beefsteak for black eyes, and perhaps a supporter below!”

Immediate elevation to curmudgeon status.

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For the twentieth-first century, we have only three choices – George W. Bush, Barak Obama and Donald Trump.  The first two are disqualified as being too cheerful.  The third is disqualified, period.  The Donald is many things but being a curmudgeon is not among them.  We have only started the century so we will have to wait on the fourth portrait.  It could be mine.

Grumpy_Curmudgeon3

 

In the meantime, let me say to my fellow Americans…

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Halloween at the Airport

Halloween is coming.

Forget wearing a Donald Trump or Lady Gaga outfit.

Try one of these, all available at your airport:

HA1

HA2

HA3

HA4

HA5

HA6

HA7

HA8

HA9

HA10

The scariest part is that these people may be on your flight!

Walking Sticks and Death by Selfie

 

“Get up off your butt and stop sleeping! I’m tired of doing nothing.”  In such dulcet tones did I receive the proclamation of She Who Must Be Obeyed*.   (*from Rumpole of the Bailey by John Mortimer.)

I, in turn, responded in my most Rumpolean manner by stating: “Huh? What? But, my dear, I am not ‘doing nothing.’  I am, in fact, emulating the habits of my good friend the Koala Bear.”  Koala Bears sleep, on average, 22 hours a day and spend the remaining time eating Eucalyptus leaves.  I create something similar by putting Eucalyptus leaves in my drinks.

“Emulating Koala Bears. Nonsense.  We are going to do something by visiting the National Parks.”

“Oh wonderful. Uh, wait… by National Parks, you mean outdoors and hikes and uh, more hikes.”

“Yes, exactly. Now get up because we are on our way.”

Thus began our trip to some of the more storied National Parks of the western United States – Grand Canyon, Bryce, Zion, and the Petrified Forest. Despite the exacting toll on my feet and the interruption of my Koala Bear studies, it was a very pleasant trip and allowed me to observe some unnatural wonders among the wonders of our National Parks.

The first is the use of the walking stick.  It seems that nowadays no visit to a National Park is complete without the use of one.  My own unscientific observations have concluded that there are only three categories of people who use walking sticks:

1. Dudes who look cool with walking sticks.

Walking stick1   Walking stick2   Walking stick3

2.  People with disabilities or injuries who need the aid of a walking stick.

3.  Everyone else.

Only categories 1 and 2 should use walking sticks. Unfortunately, category 3 predominates in National Parks.  Actually, the device should be called a carrying stick because most users are carrying rather using their walking sticks.  I think that the organizers of National Park tours highly recommend a walking stick as de rigueur for the upcoming visit and then just happen to have them available at highly inflated prices.

Those who actually use walking sticks use modern ones in tandem like ski poles and have determined that their use entitles them to the right of way on any park path. Failure to yield will result in being pushed aside or poked with the sharp ends of the stick.  I have reserved a new ring in hell for category 3 users of walking sticks.

My other observation is the occurrence of the ubiquitous selfie and selfie stick. Most of the people who take selfies are instant candidates for a Darwin Award.  For the uninitiated, Darwin Awards are given to those individuals who improve the human gene pool by eliminating themselves from it.  A double Darwin Award was given in 2014 to two men in Kenya who were capturing selfies with a wild elephant when they were trampled to death by the irate pachyderm who proceeded to bury the corpses with brush. The two men were actually touching the elephant’s face while taking the photos.

Similar Darwin Award candidates inhabit our National Parks. The idea is to get a picture of yourself overlooking as close as possible a treacherous chasm, cliff, overhang or precipitous drop.  While endangering themselves, and often unsuspecting visitors nearby, the selfie taker fails to understand some basic rules of photography.  First, you are taking up most of the picture so no one really sees the natural wonder to which you are adding yourself.  Second, most selfie pictures can be composed at a safe distance from the dangerous perch or drop off with the same result and no requirement to jeopardize yourself.  But where is the fun in being practical?  Most selfie takers get an “A” for enthusiasm and an “F” for practicality.

Thankfully, the Darwin gene pool remained unaltered, my sore feet recovered, and I was able to return to my study of Koala Bear sleeping habits.

SHAREing

Here’s something I wish to SHARE with you.

I am never going to ask anyone on Facebook to SHARE anything… ever!

I am not going to ask you to SHARE if:

  1. You agree with Donald Trump;
  2. You hate Donald Trump;
  3. Parents should be allowed to teach their kids to shoot;
  4. U call yourself my buddy, friend or family;
  5. You are lactose intolerant;
  6. You need a hug;
  7. You need an Amen;
  8. You need a laxative;
  9. Chuck Todd is an idiot;
  10. Bill O’Reilly is an idiot;
  11. I am an idiot;
  12. You think that Hitler and global warming are related;
  13. You found Jesus;
  14. You found inspiration:
  15. You found your ass with both hands;
  16. You need to water your lawn;
  17. You have to pass water;
  18. You have a used sofa for sale;
  19. You passed water on a used sofa for sale;
  20. I want to show you what I had for breakfast for the last five months;
  21. I want to show you my infrequent bowel movements;
  22. You ran behind the DDT watering truck as a kid;
  23. You have 12 cases of chocolate soy milk to give away;
  24. You are looking for others to participate in a cardio exercise by the pool;
  25. The abandoned puppy in this picture will be shot unless 1,000 people share and say No;
  26. Only 1% of the population can pass this quiz;
  27. You like my recipe for kale lemonade;
  28. Sharing is caring;
  29. “i” before “e” except after “c;”
  30. You believe in alien anal probing.

Sadly, less than 2% of you will like and share these sentiments.

Hit LIKE and SHARE if you AGREE.

SHAREing

(Just kidding!)

Regrets

Thirty five things2

An article from PopSugar dated June 7, 2017 suggested thirty five things you’ll regret in life. I personally feel that the number is low by several orders of magnitude but I thought I would give a curmudgeon’s perspective on these things.

1.Holding grudges

Naw, this is part of my fabric. How can you be a true curmudgeon without holding grudges as long as possible?

2. Not going to the dentist regularly

I would go more often if the fluoride rinse came in better flavors, like scotch or bourbon.

3. Losing touch with friends

I get reacquainted the moment they win a lottery.

4. Stressing yourself out too much

It’s nothing that can’t be remedied by heavy drinking or recreational drugs.

5. Letting fear stop you from trying something

Review Jackass: the Movie first.

6. Not traveling enough

Apply regret number 5 to your visits to North Korea, Iran, Syria and Yemen.

7. Burning bridges

I burn bridges only when I get to them.

8. Keeping toxic people in your life

See regret number 1.

9. Being overly strict with your diet

No problem.

10. Hating yourself

Hating others comes first.

11. Not being there when someone needed you most

If someone needs a curmudgeon most, they are in trouble.

12. Treating your parents poorly

Even a curmudgeon loves his parents. What did they ever do to deserve me?

13. Worrying about money so much

It’s nothing that can’t be resolved by winning the lottery or straight sevens at the one-armed bandit.

14. Letting the little things get to you

See regret number 1.

15. Living life based upon what someone else wants

Unless that someone else is your spouse, family or pet.

16. Staying angry at someone

See regret number 1.

17. Not saying “I love you

Can you imagine a curmudgeon saying “I love you?”

18. Ignoring your body

Personally, I try to ignore my body as much as possible.

19. Overworking yourself

No problem.

20. Not spending enough time with family

Even a curmudgeon agrees. I do tell my family that “I smile because I am related to them; I laugh because there is nothing they can do about it.”

21. Listening to haters

See regret number 1.

22. Not taking that much needed vacation

If only someone else would pay for it.

23. Having enemies

See regret number 1.

24. Treating someone badly

Unless they hurt your family, friends or pets.

25. Worrying so much about what others think

The more I think of others, the less I think of others.

26. Not going for that dream job

If only Warren Buffet, Bill Gates or Steve Jobs had called me. Maybe they did not have my number.

27. Not taking care of your physical and mental health

I avoid both physical and mental activity as much as possible so as to preserve both.

28. Being close-minded

See regret number 1.

29. Doing the bare minimum

At my age I am not doing the bare minimum, I am conserving energy.

30. Being afraid to take more risks

Are you one of those people who will avoid risk to make it safely to death?

31. Not enjoying life more

See regret number 1.

32. Being selfish

Ditto.

33. Closing people off

Also ditto.

34. Not giving back

I always give back, usually with the back of my hand.

35. Letting someone other than yourself be in charge of your happiness

Unless that someone else is your spouse, family or pets.

That’s it for now; thousands more to follow.