Stuff I Probably Shouldn’t Have Said

A Return to Standard Time

This weekend we set our clocks back and returned to standard time.

Wouldn’t it be a relief if we could set back time and return to a higher standard of national leadership?

As a nation, we survived puritans, wars, prohibition, the roaring twenties, Woodstock and Nixon. During each era, self-appointed sages predicted our downfall and a one-way ticket to damnation. That didn’t happen due to responsible leadership and the fact that most Americans are caring and conscientious.

January 17, 2017, ended a period of civility and morality and heralded a decline in intellect and common decency in leadership. Regardless of who the next President is, it will take years to recover from the effect of unchallenged dereliction.

If most of us are conscientious and caring how did we elect leaders who are the antithesis of our values?

None of these theories provide guidance as to how we apologize to our children and grandchildren who will bear the burden of uninformed choices.

Historically generation gaps highlight the wisdom and efforts of the predecessor, but wisdom was glaringly absent during the 2016 election.

We can be thankful that survivors of the Parkland shooting and young Greta Thunberg are not wasting time waiting for apologies or excuses.

Undesirable Feminine Traits in the Workplace Revealed

“You have to be careful or else you might come off as a ball buster.” That was career advice I received back in the sixties. I didn’t know what that meant. I didn’t think of myself as a female with a vengeance toward man parts.

If you discount the first-grade altercation when I launched my lunch pail full of rocks upside the head of the class bully, a behemoth three times my size, I reached adulthood violence-free.

In the sixties, it was hard enough to navigate the workplace without the pall of “ball -buster” casting negative vibes over my work cubicle.  I did what most women did; worked diligently and dependably in the background making sure the male department head always looked super professional—even when he wasn’t—even when he didn’t deserve it.

Years later, in 2002 a butt sketch artist came to our office for an afternoon of mandatory fun, and the explanation for my undesirable moniker was revealed.

My co-workers had a field day coming up with appropriate titles for the sketch. I prefer to categorize the object as that of an independent thinker. (First grade was the last time I threw rocks at anyone.)

Emily Peck’ s article, “How to Act Nicely Around Men,” covered a seminar conducted in 2018, that instructed women on how to behave among male co-workers, complete with desired feminine traits.

The guidelines were a throwback to the sixties and “independent thinker” did not appear in the feminine portion of the equation.

I’m pretty certain ball-busters need not apply either.

When is Too old Too Old?

Options to protest unfair and inaccurate perceptions regarding aging are fruitless and most of the time only serve to reinforce the offender’s position.

I am eighty, therefore qualified to address aging from that perspective. Older people have been around a long time. We know and can name the three branches of government. World history, American history, civics, and social science were required subjects when we attended high school.

Contrary to popular belief, we are more tolerant. We know many issues are gray; we understand nuances.

Eighty-year olds are informed and engaged. We use our electronic devices to remain informed. We do not use smartphones at the dinner table. We are fully engaged when we are with other people and don’t keep one eye on the phone, afraid we might miss new tweets.

Eighty is the age when you say to yourself, “Ahhh, I am free to say and do and say what I damn well please.”

Why would Bernie or Joe want to deny themselves that pleasure? As President, how would you ever keep it a secret that you ate leftover pizza for breakfast, or spent the day reading, pursuing a hobby or binging on Netflix?

Imagine being awakened from a sound sleep and having to make a critical decision without at least three cups of coffee. I don’t want to even look at another human before one in the afternoon. Can you imagine having to deal with someone like Ted Cruz before vodka thirty?

The other issue is attire. It’s an unfortunate fact, but older men have more restrictive body issues. Taxpayers would have to cough up extra dollars for custom tailoring slacks to accommodate the disappearing male booty.

An eighty-year-old chassis requires a lot of exercise and maintenance to stay healthy. That translates to more doctor appointments and more time in the gym.

Knocking eighty is too old to keep up with the demands of the presidency. Bernie and Joe’s experience in government and life are valuable assets. A better option would be cabinet positions.

I’ll bet Elizabeth would find a plan for that.

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