Friday, April 04, 2014

Sunshine State Senile Survey

Save for hurricanes and such, the weather here is almost always to-die-for.  Thus, when a South Floridian crows about "great weather," that translates: "There is no place on earth to match this glory!"  

Such, then, is precisely what we are experiencing now.  "Died and gone to heaven" is the first cliche that pops into my block to describe our island weather.  Alas, move over Daytona.  Next week are the international speed boat races and an estimated 50K will line our beaches daily to take in the noisy event.  We will actually need tickets to get on and off our island.  Hence, Michelle and Michael will row the boat ashore and spend as much time off old Manasota as possible; there, elsewhere, anywhere, we will enjoy yet more of this magnificent weather.


Geezer Karaoke

Almost always—nay, ALWAYS always—our local dead tree media gives waaaaay too much space to the cranks and crazies who feel compelled to ventilate, those who must get something "off their chests.”  These “Rants to the Editor” are the first time that many of these rancorous old birds have gotten their literary feet wet in public, so to speak.  Alas, most should have not gone near the water.

Almost always--nay, ALWAYS always--these first-timers try to sound far more intelligent than they really are.  From the looks of the letters, most writers spend more time checking the dictionary for the most massive multi-syllable words they can find rather than actually trying to nail a point.  For these literary giants, first order of business is to sound high-toned and brainy and not disgrace the good name of Norton, Kramden, Abbott, or Costello.  Example:

It is imperious that all of us to focus our cerebral attentiveness toward the esteemed and profligate city council who has ensconced a prerogative that our truculent authorities and elected American jurisprudence may proffer in proper venues or a panoply in court and who propose to suborn the duly elected cream of mushroom soup. . . .

Clearly, from the effort thrown into the above, the writer imagines that newspapers still matter; that not only are millions across the state avidly reading this profound essay from a hick fish wrap in a sleepy seaside nook of South Florida, but so too are the head honchos up in Tallahassee, maybe even the big boys inside the Beltway.  Fact is, print media today is about as relevant as smoke signals and the idiot above will be lucky if twenty people, including his family and friends, can perambulate and postulate through such utter pontificating prudery and split pea soup.

Other ranters get pissed at some little item they read in the paper and feel “compelled” to respond.

Harvey J. Swartz: “It takes a lot to get me riled, but. . . . “   

The All-Seeing Eye Sez:  “No it doesn’t, Harv.  You get ‘riled’ at virtually everything that doesn’t meet your standard of decency and dullness.”

Morris Blumberg: “I feel it my duty to respond on behalf of all those. . . .” 

The All-Seeing Eye Sez:  “Your ‘duty’, Moe?  Who appointed you Indian lookout and moral Boy Scout for our lives?  And ‘all those’?  You mean on behalf of yourself and your wife, Flo, don’t you, Moe?”  

Wilbur C. Bumstead:  “Everyone in this country has the right to express their own opinions, but. . . . “

The All-Seeing Eye Sez:  “Well, not really.  Anyone who expresses an idea that differs from Wilbur’s is no better than an un-American Muslim-loving tub of pond scum who probably opposes the good old fashioned American method of torturing our enemies to death at Gitmo and at the three hundred other American owned and Jewish operated torture pens around the globe.”

Others get just a bit carried away with their anger.  Except for taking it out on their wives and the furniture, venting in the newspapers is the best they can do.  Here are a few random rants that have hit Florida papers in the last few weeks:

1) I have never written to the paper before but I feel compelled to. . . .

2) I want to register a complaint about. . . .

3) I am disgusted by those who blame this great country for. . . .

4) I hate it when some people urinate on. . . .

5) God knows my heart, but sometimes I want to phisicly hurt those who. . . . 

6) I hope all them that voted for that peece of garbige die horribel deaths. . . .

7) I want to poke the Eyeballs out of them Who thinck they can. . . .

8) I want to dekapatates . . . deecopiated . . . De Cappatate . . . I want to cut off the hed of evryone who. . . .

9) I will sloly Kill and eat the Hart and livver of all them what don’t agree with. . . .

More wars than you can count . . . state-sponsored torture . . . an out-of-control government spying on our every move . . . World War Three looming. . . . But anyway, what’s really on the minds of Gulf Coast Geezers.  Here’s a compilation of Groans to the Editor that I sampled over the span of a month or more.

Several crotchety coots are griping to the editor about Medicare, social security and how we owe so much to the “Greatest Generation” for saving the world from “evil,” something about how they fought for our freedoms and how we should crawl around in the dirt to fittingly show how much we worship these god-like saviors.  Hmmm. . . . that sounds vaguely familiar.  Another bitch bucket is growling about an overgrown lot next door with poison oak and other noxious weeds that the city refuses to do squat about.  According to the old lady, the weeds are really raising hell with her step-father--a gent who must be at least 150 years-old, if not more--and who has contracted a dozen life-threatening contagions from this odious lot of death next door, including a right smart case of staph infection.  At least one letter seems from a truly demented fellow who may have just slipped over that line which separates sense from senility.  Writes this crazy chap:

Recently, I have noticed a growing interest in smells.  I mean the effort to make everywhere we go smell nice.  Many companies want our homes to smell like fresh linen, springtime, gardens, lilies, roses, lilacs, the country, farms, meadows, laundry drying in the sun, clouds, fluffy feathers, and apple pie in the oven.  Oh, and, of course, lavender.

Then, after rambling on and on about bar soap, laundry soap, dish soap, candles, and bath salts for what seems like ten thousand words, old Merle somehow manages to wrap things up.

In the future, personal attraction might be based merely on smell.  Say a woman is attracted to a man because he smells like open meadows and he is attracted to her because she smells like pillow cases on a clothesline in the sun.  Boing!  Love at first smell.  Ain’t smell grand?

Something tells me that Merle’s wife, Bertha May, put the old fool up to this by telling  him what a great writer and wit he is and what a wonderful subject “smells” would be for the newspaper.  Also, as a former editor myself, I’m betting that the original letter was three or four times longer than the published version and that the “lucky” newspaper editor had to deftly trim this “masterpiece” down to keep this subscriber on board and happy.  And so, jammed in there between a paper full of murders, rapes, incest, animal cruelty, beatings, pit bull attacks, child abuse, and drugs, there is Merle and his smells.

No sooner does Merle take his bow and retire when another Will Rogers wanna-be steps up.  Yep, this is what happens when pretty damned dull men retire and have zippo to do.  Most, fortunately, turn to fishing and drinking.  Some, misfortunately, some turn to the arts and pretty quick—say, in an hour or so—most fancy themselves “artists.”  Be it wood carving, painting, or, god forbid, writing, many crazy old coots buy the BS their wives and addled friends are selling.   Tell me that the senile old loon following does not have too much time on his hands. . . .


One of the simple joys of old age is a good cracker.  Yes, a good cracker!  Good news that we live in a time of the perfection of the cracker.  Don’t believe me?  Just take a stroll down the cracker aisle at the supermarket.  Go slow.  And look.  You will be amazed at the assortment and the quality of the crackers calling for your attention.

Sometime ago, I decided on my favorite type of cracker.  I like a crunchy, wheaty cracker.  It has a strong woven texture that made me feel healthy when I crunched into it.  It also happily welcomed a glob of peanut butter.  And then there were the cheeses.

I was not alone in choosing this cracker.  The baker noticed its popularity because it soon became available with different ingredients.  In quick succession, they made my favorites with tomato and basil, then rice, red bean, red pepper, sweet potato and roasted sweet onion.  They got carried away. They cracked up over crackers!  Tried several but none was really as good as the original.

Now in the midst of this new abundance and varieties of richness, I am left with one major problem.  I can’t find the original, simple plain cracker!  Crunch?

Roy C. Nile
Punta Gorda

Damn!  DAMN!  Roy ain’t just batz; he is unbearably, amazingly, boringly batz.  He reminds me of some other poor idiots I have known running on about other such arresting subjects that I am already just too bored to recall.  One man—a windy retired salesman I once knew--who, when the political conversation over wine lagged for a few seconds, out of the blue in chirped he with, “You know, one of the things I like is a pencil . . . a good lead pencil!

Nuclear annihilation looming, drones watching us, drones killing us, freedom circling the toilet bowl, anger, hatred, torture, war, War, WAR . . . and yet, here we have old Roy rambling on all day about his favorite cracker, like some idiot gibbering by the roadside.  

Do not people like Roy have waaaaay too much time on their hands?  Should we not find them jobs to keep them busy?  Would it not be beneficial to all concerned—especially to the trees who provide the paper on which such insipid stupidity is printed--if we forced upon these folks some taxing labor, some labor like slaving all day in a salt mine somewhere deep in the earth or some labor like loading large logs all night in a lumber mill, day, night, day, night, day, night, sun up, sun down, up, down, up, down, up, down, until we sweat all this crazy senility out of them?  Wouldn’t it be better to work these bores so hard in some geezer gulag system that they will be too tired to worry about becoming “artists” and too tuckered to plague us with such nonsense about crackers or smells or peach preserves or whatever their crazy thought process can conjure?

Back a year or so ago when some idiot or some group of idiots tried to ring down a boycott on a national chicken chain when they refused to support gay marriage, gay divorce, gay tag-team wrestling, gay ventriloquists, or gay something-or-rather, this item appeared in our local fish wrap. . . .  


Why is it that there were more people standing in line to buy a savory deluxe chicken sandwich at the Chick-fil-A in Port Charlotte than there are at the Memorial Day services at Laishley Park? I get it, to support the biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman. The Bible also states that slavery was acceptable and wealth was not. Will anyone be joining me as I protest for slavery and against wealth? 

Elbert C. Crotchett
Cape Fear

Elbert may “get it” but I sure as hell don’t. I think what old Bert is trying to say is, “I am a patriotic fudge packer that gets all riled and rankled when others vote with their bellies to protest same-same sex among nipple-knockers and pole-smokers but after only eighty years I am still too timid, too sheepish to step out of this closet just yet, so I write coded and confusing letters to the ed instead.”

Moving right along. . . . Now that local elections are mercifully over, and now that many senile seniors—alas--have somehow managed to find their way south to the Sunshine State again, the “Rants to the Editor” have revved up to their natural level of retarded reading. Every day letters like the following become more common:


Many thanks to the folks who put together the car show at the Charlotte Sun.  The huge display of vehicles was excellent.  Keep it up.

On the dark or negative side was after being invited into the lounge area for coffee and doughnuts, only doughnuts with frosting and/or covered with sugar were on hand.  Plain doughnuts would be a great item for the many diabetics who attend the show and also purchase your paper.  Doughnuts are made first without any covering, so why not order in some?  Any chance for the next time?

Also thanks to the volunteers who were on hand for anyone wanting to get checked for diabetes.

Robert A.Churl
Port Charlotte

Clearly, Bob has diabetes on the brain.  Good god, Bob, if you find free sinkers covered with frosting and sugar so “dark and negative” guess you must lead a pretty lonely life under that rock; guess you must find virtually everything else in this scary world very “sinister and evil,” including Snickers, popcorn balls and marshmallows.

Bob, you loser, you lard, you whiny worm, you simple-minded moron, HELLO?  They are free, Bob, FREE doughnuts . . . free as the wind!  If your monomania about diabetes and sugar-loaded freebies is so dire, then Bob why not break down and buy sugar-free doughnuts (if there is such a silly thing) or better yet, why not make some sugar-free doughnuts on your own hook?  Too expensive, you say?  Too hard to make, you say?  Ain’t got time, you say?  Thought so.   Check!  Check!  and Check!

My advice, Bob, is just avoid altogether doughnuts and such and you might just avoid diabetes too.  And quit your damned whining, fool.  You, my boy, are just the type of curmudgeon who can put the quietus on nice events like the above when the organizers say to themselves, “Oh, to hell with this stupid noise.  I'm so outta here.  It’s nothing but headaches with people like Bob bitching and complaining about every little thing every step of the way!”

Meanwhile, as the twin Jewish ogres in Tel Aviv and Washington, along with their more-than-willing allies--US media, US neocons, US Christian bible-beating-screws-loose nut jobs, to name a few--as they continue their madness and inch the world closer and closer to the nuclear precipice, the crazy geezers of Planet Florida seem preoccupied with other highly important matters.   As the following indicates, Sunshine State seniles have much bigger fish to fry than fretting over such frilly, frothy, far-out subjects such as freedom, slavery or the possibility of mere world-ending confrontations. 


Please stop hiding the comics.  Every day they are in a different spot and a challenge for us older folks to find.  Thursday is the worst.  You sports jocks keep the sports news out in front, even on the front above the headlines.  Please give us a break and don’t make us search for the funnies.  We remember “Jigs and Maggie” and “Li’l Abner” and other long gone strips, but some of the current cartoons are humorous and give us our daily smiles.  Thank you.

Dilbert  R. Dillweed
Port Charlotte

Must be a difficult struggle each morning at dawn as Dilbert wrestles through the 20 or 30 "challenging" newspaper pages filled with foreclosures, minority crime, illegal aliens, American decline, American collapse—must be tough each morn hunting up his beloved comics. 

Hmmmmm.  Seems like a painless out; just go for an extended visit to Dilbert’s funny paper LaLa Land of fog and madness and eat peach preserves all night and read “Jigs and Maggie” and chat with Dilbert all the live-long day until the last remaining particles of my brain are GONE . . . Gone . . . Gone . . . Gone.….  ( POOF! )