Jewish World Review August 9, 2013/ 3 Elul, 5773
The Return of Cranky Man
By Greg Crosby
G0D grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
Wonderful words to live by. But notice it says nothing about grousing. Cranky Man accepts the things he cannot change but he reserves the right to grouse about them whenever he darn well pleases. This would be one of those times. Grouse along with me, if you dare, as I list some recent annoyances of mine.
Let's start with baseball. I wish I could understand what the "punishment" is to New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez. Major League Baseball has suspended him for the rest of this season and all of next season for "his use and possession of numerous forms of prohibited performance-enhancing substances, including testosterone and human growth hormone over the course of multiple years."
His punishment under the labor contract was "for attempting to cover up his violations of the program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate the office of the commissioner's investigation." But get this - even though he has been suspended HE CONTINUES TO PLAY AND RAKE IN HIS MILLIONS! Why? Because he has decided to fight it. He is allowed to continue to play baseball with his team (and be paid his huge salary) until the matter is resolved. How long will his appeals drag this thing out? Could it go on indefinitely? Punishment? What a joke.
If the majority of my fellow baseball fans still had a semblance of scruples and high moral values they would boo this guy whenever he came to bat at every stadium in the country. They would stop buying any apparel and souvenirs with his name on them. They would write letters of protest; they would throw back any balls he hits into the stands. I doubt they will.
Sadly, we live in a time when too many have lost their moral compass. Cheaters are no longer shunned, that would be judgmental and we never want to be judgmental. Winning is everything, to hell with playing it straight, to hell with the rules, to hell with your teammates, just do what you need to do to win for yourself. It's all about winning and it's all about selfishness. I love baseball but the narcissistic attitude of players like Rodriguez sickens me.
Turning now from baseball bums to speed bumps. Yes sir, speed bumps are another lovely invention of modern society. So many residential streets I drive down these days have been mutilated with these kidney-rattling speed bumps. The idea is to slow down drivers that are going too fast down these streets, I get it. What I don't get, is how come we didn't need speed bumps for the first seventy years or so since cars were invented? Speed bumps have only been in common usage on public roads for the last 30 years or so, and more and more of them are being created with each passing year.
I don't like speed bumps, but okay, I'll go along with them if they keep jerks from driving like maniacs down residential streets. The problem is, they don't work. Idiots in jacked-up trucks with big tires just sail right over them with no problem. Other morons in expensive cars who just don't care ignore the bumps too.
What then has been the cities' answer to this? More speed bumps, of course. Some streets even have a combination of speed bumps with speed humps (humps being slightly lower speed bumps). And when that doesn't work, they add "dips" into the streets as well. But what do we do when the bumps and humps and dips still can't stop the speeding drivers? Only one thing left…speed cliffs. That's right, dig deep ditches into the street, sharp drops that will actually work because the cars will fall into the abyss and never be seen again. That not only gets rid of the speeding car, it gets rid of the idiot driving the speeding car. That just might work. Try it, Los Angeles.
I don't have a clever way of segueing into my next gripe, so I'll just say, on to a completely different subject. The use of initials instead of words is getting really irritating to me. I guess it started many years ago by the government. FBI, CIA, and IRS are the most common examples and we all know what they stand for. But DOJ, DHS, DOE, and others do not instantly register. Is it really so hard to just say Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security or Department of Education?
Now everyone is jumping on the initial bandwagon and I don't have a clue what most of these letters mean when I hear them. Sometimes I can figure them out if I really want to take the time to think about it, but why not just say the damn words in the first place so we can all understand. Maladies, illnesses, and diseases no longer use words, and I'm supposed to know what ADHD, ADD-RT, CHADD, IBS, and STD's are? And you know that big drug store chain, CVS? What do those initials stand for? Make up your own joke.
Cranky Man over and out.
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© 2008, Greg Crosby