When I grow up, my lofty goal is curmudgeondum. A cute crotchety old man I’d say. Grumpy, yet endearing. Is that possible? My wife and kids often underline me as adorable. Adorable is okay and all, but I’m looking for a bit edgy.
Yes, my aspiration is to grumble away while bent over wrangling loose shoelaces, forgetting to breathe. Just like the news, negative narratives sell, so a crotchety old fossil will gain more notoriety than simply being “nice.”
In the meantime, is there enough time to be mean? There’s enough time. I’ll start with bullying myself, I’m pretty good at that. But to be experienced as a frumpy relic with a negative aura, work is involved. The keeping of the goal must be sticky noted to the mirror, and written on the back of a business card shoved in my wallet.
I’ll begin by going around the house mumbling while flipping off light switches. I’ll put other people’s spent dishes in the washer, but in a clanking, cantankerous air of self-righteous purse-lipped distain.
I’ll pick up what they left lying around like some Cinderfella. I’ll be the king of projection, pointing and sighing while my own socks and underwear decompose near the laundry basket.
The next step is to mouth words to those who hunt and gather food from the kitchen but leave carcasses wherever they please. Instead of butlering the splayed crusty dishes and etcetera, I need to make the extra effort to tell the infractioneers to take care of their own messes. This isn’t my idea. My wife keeps telling me, “Hands off; leave it lie; walk on by.”
And where have all the laundry baskets gone…long time passing? I thought they were carrying aids to the folding area. Folding? Bah. The refresh button on the dryer equals wrinkle riddance. Wrinkle spray equals the unfolding of lines and creases. What is an iron? I can hear a college prof asking such a question in a philosophy class.
I won’t mention the toilet paper roll…okay, I will, since you asked. How many rolls does it take to change a lightbulb? Uh, who changes lightbulbs, I mean, seriously? That will mean filling the trash can a bit more. Trash can. Trash can what? Garbage sits and sits as the can mimics Mt. Saint Helens in her third trimester.
Is it easier to do it for them? Yes, on an emotional scale it avoids glares, huffs, slumps, and non-responses. But in the long run, if I ‘do for’, they ‘don’t for’ just keep nice ole dad responding to their irresponsibility. No. No. And No. This does not edge me toward my goal.
I must see and say. I’m going to repeat and point. I will ignore their hem and haw. My adorable self will be transformed into a despotic psychotic man of means. The meaner the better. I’m not aiming to receive the red badge of discourage. The metal of courageous curmudgeon will be slipped around my neck before I am unable to scale the podium.