Saturday, March 31, 2012

Me, Moralizer

I read a few sleeps back that an Easter Egg hunt in Colorado was scrubbed because adults, not kids, cheated last year.  Why am I not surprised?  

Seems some “helicopter parents” (adults who hover over their children and see it as their sworn duty to flatten every friggen speed bump that lay in their kids’ path), were so fearful that their precious darlings would not find an egg or two and would thus be so terribly traumatized as a result that it might actually spiral out of control until their kids faced a future full of failure as a result--drug addictionism, grade school drop outism, living out their miserably failed lives in a van down by the riverism—and all because they didn’t find a fuggin’ Easter Egg. . . . 

Anyway, these “adults” were so stressed that their kids might not find some candy during the hunt that they themselves crossed the barrier rope and like ridiculous bird dogs pointed their kids to the eggs. When one or two idiots crossed the rope, of course, those left behind the rope were disgusted and rightly thought, NOT FAIR!  Instead of simply allowing these moron parents to publicly display their moronitude under the scornful glare of all, however, many of the outraged parents joined the original morons and crossed the rope to help their little Baileys, Addisons, Mackenzies, and DreJuanTrelles.

As I see it, those parents who originally crossed the rope made a really bad decision . . . but for a good reason.  Although they displayed no more maturity than their five- and six-year-olds, no doubt these “grown-ups” knew something of deprivation as children, knew a bit about the crushing load of failure during kidhood, knew the deep insecure feeling that only ineptitude and inadequacy bring . . . and by God, come hell or high water they are now bound and determined that their kids will have it different than they.  Okay, fine.  But who can doubt that their actions are creating a whole new set of problems for their kids?  What these well-meaning, but unthinking, parents forget is that the truly stronger character traits come from BOTH sides of the line, the winning as well as the losing. 

And as for the others: Instead of acting like idiots and showing the world that they really are little better than the original rope crossing sinners, the better response would have been to take their kids aside, point out in real time how unfair the spectacle was, how disgusting some big people can be, and that life is full of just such unfairness that they will have to deal with, by and by.  And after that little moral lecture--which would probably be forgotten as soon as it was uttered anyway--just whisk the kids away and dry their tears with a big chocolate bunny from the candy shop.


Fine Arts, Fire Ants, Fire Arts, Fine Ants—Florida Wildlife and Game spokespeople say that all indications point to a decrease in fire ant populations throughout the state.  Hmmmm.  Hard to imagine how they can calculate that we have decreased from 98 trillion-godzillion--gorgazillion fire ants down to a mere 97 trillion-godzillion-gorgazillion fire ants, but If only this were true!   

Fire ants are an invasive species from some miserable hell hole corner of the world and they are here for the simple reason that God or Satan—take your pick--sent them here to punish or reward—take your pick--we Americans for any number of sins or virtues—take your pick—viz., nonstop war, gluttony, obesity, drugs, Obama, sports addiction, junk food, Bush, drunkenness, pollution, Lady GaGa, tattoos, pit bulls, midget wrestling, midget porn, midget reality shows, and whatever.

My first encounter with these aptly named devil dwarfs (ants, not midgets) came about twenty years ago when my first wife and I, along with our little boy, stopped in Louisiana for a picnic.  Barely had we taken our first bite when lots of little bites began to be taken from that part of our anatomies which took up the most territory on the earth where the ants happened to be homesteading.  Needless to say, we high-tailed it back to the vehicle with these things biting our butts every damn dash of the way. 

Fire ants are very small red monsters which live on the ground in colonies.  They run so fast that it is almost hard to squash the tiny brutes with your finger.  Proportionally, if a man moved as fast as a fire ant it would be a blur; like he had a jet pack on his back and zipped about always at one hundred miles an hour or more.  And no, fire ants do not need a reason to attack; they attack if you threaten them, they attack if you do not threaten them.   If you were laying on the ground in a coma they would sting you just as fervently as if you were waging war on them.  

Down in Texas, the cattle industry is losing millions every year because cows drop their newborns near the omnipresent fire ant mounds.  The calves are immediately stung to death.

Let me say this: A fire ant sting is a sting that keeps on giving.  The initial shot of venom is bad enough and seems incredibly sharp coming from something so unbelievably small.  But Whoa, Nelly Bell . . . the fun part of the sting comes a day or two later when the wound festers and demands that you not just scratch it, but demands that you dig a hole to China through the affected body part.  And, even should the afflicted person, in a fit of desperation, suddenly take a knife and cut off the impacted body part and fling it away, I believe the stinging would, in some existential way, simply transfer to another body part that was still attached and resume the fiery torment.  And scratching, of course, only spreads the fun around and makes it vastly worse.  Of all the anti-venom stuff, common vinegar seems to work best (which is not saying much).

There are very few life forms that I go out of my way to terminate on sight.  Biting flies are one, mosquitoes are two, and fire ants are three.  The other night as we walked to our beach, I spotted a small fire ant mound on the ground and with my flip-flop I aimed and ground it into the . . . ground it into the . . . ground it into the . . . I ground it into the ground, THAT’S WHERE I GROUND IT, PERIOD!  (and I made sure I got my foot out of there in a jumpin' jack nano-flash, too!)

For any of my northern brethren and sisterns who have never seen any fire ants but who are curious to see ‘em, be careful what you are curious for.  My bet is that the so-called ”decrease” in Florida fire ants is due, not to their prayed-for demise, but due to the fact that they are marching north to punish or reward—take your pick—you infernal Yankees.


Fun With Crime--Two local addicts, a male and a female, were looking for innovative ways to feed their drug habits this week and so they went on a breaking-into-cars crime spree.  This whacked out Bonnie & Clyde even stole a tazer from a cop’s car.  Now, wouldn’t that have been rich?  Suppose the cop had shown up just as  the thieves swiped the taze.  

I can hear the couple shouting at the law dog now, “FREEZE!  GET YOUR HANDS UP!  GET ON THE GROUND!  STAND ON YOUR HEAD!  SIT UP AND BARK!  STOP RESISTING!  STOP RESISTING!”  And then, with a laugh and a “Oh, what the hell?” they just juice the cop with some good swift jolts of volts, just for kicks.  What criminal would not have enjoyed THAT free show as the erstwhile tazer now becomes the tazee and does that little electric chicken dance on the ground that they all do, vibrating up and down like some super-spastic mental patient being stung by a thousand fire ants at once.



When Geezers go bad—Down at Fort Myers the other night, cops went to check on the safety of some old woman.  Apparently, she was not appreciative in the least.  Whipping out a pistol, she began blazing away at her would-be rescuers.  No cops hurt, but the woman was injured a bit.  Some people just don’t wanna be saved from themselves. Wounded or not, too bad the cops then didn't give this "lady" some good ol' fashioned tazer justice.  Better believe that this would have been a lesson long remembered and probably would have been the fastest this old gal had moved since last she danced the jitterbug back in 1935.


Caricature of the Day