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Curmudgeon And Hurt Feelings

2015 December 9

Well golly, who is to say how much time passes until a worthy rant (in my curmudgeonly opinion) piques the fancy? Well Breitbart managed just that:

Judith Shulevitz, writing in the New York Times, reports that infantilized college students are indulging their need for insulation by demanding “safe spaces” where any speech that could hurt their feelings would be forbidden.

But if “safe spaces” means nothing that hurts feelings is ever said I’m curious how anyone will ever know what you say will or won’t “hurt feelings.” What color is the sky in that world? Shucks, my feelings are hurt that students attending any institution of higher learning have such narrow insight they don’t understand what must occur so no one could cause hurt feelings.

There is but one way to prevent hurt feelings (AKA “offensive speech”). Gain acceptance into a monastery that requires solemn vows of silence, become monks and rigidly adhere to those vows. In other words the entire population of our planet no longer talks. When words aren’t spoken no “hurt feelings” could happen. Right? Well, I guess it’s a start. Except when I go past one of these safe spaces and extend a middle finger toward whoever occupies that “safe space” can you imagine someone getting “hurt feelings?” Me too. Guess there’s work to do.

Wait! Someone (or many someones) may send texts that hurt feelings. Dang! Texting has to go. Cellphone pictures and videos will hurt (AKA offend) feelings. Though I won’t lament the end of “selfies”, ain’t it obvious feelings will be hurt? With all the problems associated with communicating we gotta end the cell phone industry.

Never mind capitalism, corporate greed or how severely Mizzou students feelings may be hurt. But imagine how hurt their feelings will be when they have amazingly expensive Smart Phones that became totally Stupid Phones because they never considered the consequences of demanding their feelings never be hurt. Imagine their demands were met and caused the end of the cellphone industry.

Oops! Almost missed the less obvious things that would need to go so no one could have their feelings hurt. Pens, pencils, paper, computers, printers, world wide web and any other form of communication possibly resulting in hurt feelings.

And it goes even deeper. Government hurts my feelings multiple times per day. Just a wild guess but I suspect I am not a minority. The way I see it if no one else is allowed to hurt my feelings, government isn’t allowed to either ‘cuz I’m one of the owners of our government. So here’s the challenge to Mizzou students: organize and accomplish the means of preventing government from hurting feelings and I will enthusiastically join your movement.

You want safe spaces? Keep in mind life is unsafe. Danger is a constant and there is no power on earth or anywhere else can assure safety.

To the best of my knowledge there is one exception but consider I dropped out of University education after only one year. My father claimed most academic types are “educated damned fools” and by the end of my Freshman year it was hard to disagree. Back to the one exception: when you’re in the grave nothing threatens your safety. You want absolute safety? That’s how to get it. In my opinion choosing that solutions classifies you in the “Lunatic Fringe” category.

Many thanks to Tom Cochrane and Red Rider for recording “Lunatic Fringe.”

Whoa! A good rant is so much fun.

Gaping Hole In Our Living Room Wall

2015 April 16
by Curmudgeon

First and most important disclaimer: it’s all Janice’s fault. After all in my existence Janice is “she who must be obeyed” and considering how much she is to me, that obedience is a joy. There is a bit more to this episode so strap yourselves in and pay attention.

So about a year and three months ago we all got eviction notices from the mobile home court owners. Little more needs saying that hasn’t already been said ad-nauseum. One day while Janice, Da Brudda and I were scheming how to go about putting home back together once at our new location it was decided the ‘family room’ would be matched up on the opposite side of our house. Nothin’ to it. Right? Well as we plotted and planned Janice asked if we could open an archway between living room and family room. Why not? Of course we could make an archway. Hell, if she really wanted we could possibly figure out how to make the whole place into a submarine. Only problem: the Red River may not be conducive to launch such a vessel. OK, scratch the submarine concept. An archway on the other hand became a forgone conclusion.

We stayed somewhat ahead of the curve and got necessary preparations completed to make it through the cold months. For the uninitiated, North Dakota serves up unforgiving winter weather even with puny snowfall such as this winter. Seemingly endless below zero stretches makes one forget there ain’t much snow on the ground. And after a while cabin fever sets in and you gotta do something besides drink to excess or hibernate. February was the breaking point for both Da Brudda and I. So we gathered tools into the family room, planted his table saw beside the deck and started opening walls between living room and family room. Oh yeah, there’s nothing like gagging, choking and hacking up green nasties from gypsum, fiberglass insulation and plain ole’ ordinary sawdust to let ya know you’re alive and in project mode. Suddenly there were only living room studs and family room studs between the two rooms. Indeed, the archway was in process.

Two Walls And Lotsa Studs

Then came the fateful day we realized a 2X8 needed to be ripped down to 6 inches wide. As I recall it was about -10° F when we set up the rip gate on the table saw and I started feeding the piece through to Da Brudda. Y’know I’ve had more fun but there was huge satisfaction to putting that piece in place and going “yep it looks good.”

There was endless banter discussing options how to support the roofs while getting permanent headers in place. Our methodology may have been less than orthodox but there was never a question of strength. After all we are “the overkill kings.”

A Couple Three 2X4s Oughta Hold Thing Up. Right?

A Couple Three 2X4s Oughta Hold Thing Up. Right?

Finally came the day there were no wall studs, no temporary supports, no anything except 12½‘ of open wall. Talk about space, the final frontier. There is nearly 27’ from the north living room wall to the south family room wall. Not quite enough for the Star Ship Enterprise but still impressive.

Look Ma! No Uprights!

Look Ma! No Uprights!

Janice arrived home from work, looked over the gaping hole that was once two walls and commented when she originally asked if we could make an archway she had maybe a six foot opening in mind.

Any Volunteers To Do The Finish Work?

Any Volunteers To Do The Finish Work?

Six foot? Oh come now! Not with a genetic predisposition to overkill in our DNA.

Flacid Ashbacks Or Something Like That

2015 April 7
by Curmudgeon

Sophisticated entertainment isn’t a necessity for me (Curmudgeon). Nope, I enjoy simple things like wisting twords and observing reactions as people realize they understood what was just said even though there is no resemblance to vernacular English. Likewise, there is nothing resembling colloquial English either but what the heck, they still understand. But the truth be known, this paragraph has nothing to do with what I want to address in this rant.

What I describe as “flacid ashbacks” is actually either a temporary anomaly or an indication of something serious or maybe really serious. For several months or more my right eye has been doing some weird shhtuff. Some of if resembles what is called “ocular migraine” which usually lasts maybe an hour, just not in my case. Sometimes (depending where I am) it is as though a bright flash of light fills the room or the outdoors. Web MD says I shoulda sought emergency medical attention within 24 hours of the first bright flash symptoms ‘cuz it strongly indicates retinal detachment which carries serious consequences if not treated quickly. Golly, learning that two to three weeks later is kinda scary. After a visit to the eye Dr I was assured there is no detachment and nothing to indicate any other cause(s) of the symptoms. Her advice came down to “suck it up and live with it” unless it becomes more severe. OK, I can do that.

In the meantime sinus infection was ruled out, allergy nasal spray was prescribed, over the counter allergy eye drops are being used, deodorants were switched (can you say grasping at straws) and still the symptoms continue. So I’ve spent a fair amount of time considering things from the past that may have decided to haunt me now. So far there are two:

First: the female plug end of an extension cord dropped from where it was hanging overhead and smacked my right eye while I was working on my mom’s place (love and miss you no end mom). Man did that hurt and cause a dark spot in my right visual field for about three days. Then it went away. Am I experiencing a past injury returned to haunt me?

Second: over a period from my late twenties into my mid to late thirties I had some small (you believe that don’t you) experimentation with hallucinogenics. Let’s say it could have included mescaline, peyote, ‘shrooms and yes, even lsd. Truth being I was quite the bad boy. Could this be long term acid flashbacks?

If this is a thirty some years after the fact result of hallucinogenics I guess little more needs saying except I’m impressed.

Then there is a third possibility: although my past lifestyle says life wasn’t hard on me but I was hard on it and as a result there’s a brain something screwing with my vision and eventually with my longevity. But hey, for the damages done (at least theoretically), how much brain can possibly be left?

Enquiring zombies want to know.