The Week In Review

An e-card? What's an e-card?

I’m going to start off by saying that I do not hate old people. I really don’t. I myself want to be an old person one day, within limits. I mean, you see some of these seniors on TV who are 107 and they’re not the happy kind of “Is Harry Truman still the President?” out of it, they’re more like the “Mr. McGillicutty shit in his shoes again” kind of out of it. Fuck that. But barring some radical dementia that makes me want to try to barbecue my nuts or anything crazy like that, I do want to live long enough to be fairly old.

I state that up front because today was, for me, the first day this season when seniors really got on my fucking nerves. I live in the Phoenix metro area, and we have a large population of “snow birds”, which is what we call seniors when they are in earshot because they wet their Depends when you call them “senile old fucks who deserve less parking spaces and more visits from Dr. Kervorkian”. Just like real birds, these snow birds fly South for the winter and upon arriving shit all over everything in sight.

Let’s start off with the obvious: The left lane, which is known everywhere else in the universe as the “fast lane” or the “passing lane”. In Phoenix it is known as the lane where you will find Cadillacs going 35 mph slower than the posted speed limit because the tuft of white hair behind the wheel is having a hard time seeing the road, possibly because it is looking through the hole in the steering wheel straight up at the sky. Assholes! We gave you all the kick ass parking spots, just keep that shit to the right, will you?

And the driving skills in general suck because not only are seniors more likely to get in an accident than any other age group besides teenagers, but they’re in no hurry to get anywhere. We try extra hard to avoid having serious health issues in between the months of October and March down here because if you need to be rushed to the hospital you will die, and the cause of death will be listed as, “Traffic jam caused by two seniors stopped in the middle of the road for 20 minutes to have a discussion about exactly what kind of blue that house is painted.”

Although, wow, that house is really, really blue!

Although, wow, that house is really, really blue!

And God help you if you have to go to the post office on a Saturday here. Ask most people what they think of the post office, and they will say, “Are they still around? Doesn’t everyone do everything via email these days?” At least that’s what people with their own teeth will tell you. Seniors haven’t adopted a new technology since color TV, and they will go to the grave telling you awesome the post office is. And so my mom, because she’s old, will mail me a printout of a website she thinks I will find interesting (and then emails me to tell me she did it), but then sends it along with something I have to get, like a birthday card for one of my kids, and insures the package. That leads to this conversation:

Me: Why did you insure the package? It’s a web site and a birthday card!

Mom: Because I don’t want someone to steal it!

Me: Why the hell would anyone steal that?

Mom: Mail gets stolen all the time.

Me: Then why use the post office?

Mom:  Oh, you just don’t understand.

Me: I understand you could’ve emailed me a link to the website and emailed an e-card for the birthday boy.

Mom: I don’t even know what that is.

Me: An e-card?

Mom: No, a link. An e-card? What’s an e-card?

Me: Great, now I have to wake up early and go to the post office on Saturday to sign for this thing and then have variants of this discussion with other people for 4 hours.

Mom: Oh, I love the post office!

You may love the post office, BUT CAN I GET IN HERE TO BUY A FUCKING STAMP?

You may love the post office, BUT CAN I GET IN HERE TO BUY A FUCKING STAMP?

And seniors do love the post office, which is a big problem down here. I once (and I am not exaggerating) went to the post office on a Saturday morning, took my number, left, came back two hours later, and I still had to wait my turn. You get there and you’d think there was a Matlock convention in progress. It’s all wrinkles, white hair, and denture cream in a line a mile long. And if you’re unlucky enough to have to get in line with them, you will find that most of them aren’t there for the post office at all. They are there to socialize, and three hours later ask the clerk for a book of stamps. (Don’t try to explain the stamp vending machine in the lobby. They’ll look at you as if you just tried to explain to them what an e-card is.)

One other note… Seniors, we all know that incontinence is a nuisance and we all feel bad for those who suffer from it. But an adult diaper is intended to catch the occasional accident and allow you to go clean yourself up and maintain your dignity. It is not, I repeat NOT, a convenience that allows you to avoid performing necessary bodily hygiene tasks on a regular basis. If I have to sit next to one more senior in a restaurant who reeks like he’s been marinating in a trough-style urinal for a week, I’m going to whip my junk out and piss directly on their food. Fucking. Gross.

Back to today, and how I knew snow bird season had arrived. I woke up early to go hiking in the Superstition Mountains and spent quite a bit of time behind people in large cars with Ohio bumper stickers, all of them with their left turn signal on. And then I got out on the trail and was working up a sweat about a half an hour into the hike as I’m approaching the high point. The trail is narrow and surrounded by rock, cactus, and other thorny plants, so you’re not going to be walking off trail without leaving some blood behind.

And it goes without saying that I came across a senior walking up the trail with the heavy assistance of a walking stick who would not step to the side for a fucking second so that I might pass him. A cheery, “Hi there!” to make sure he knew I was there was attempted, as was a throat clearing, an “excuse me”, and finally a, “can I just get by you real quick?” Nothing. He’d look at me, so I know he heard me. And when the trail finally widened and I passed him, I whispered, “Thanks, have a nice day” which he answered, so I know he wasn’t deaf. Just fucking inconsiderate as all shit because his attitude is, “I’m retired, I have nothing to do, so no one else does either. Let’s just all slow down and we can talk it out over an early bird special at Perkin’s”.

Ok, old-timer, I'm buying.

Ok, old-timer, I'm buying.

Fuck you, gramps. You keep telling people our age that life is short, so how about you stop wasting what little time we have left AND FUCKING MOVE OVER!

Sorry. This shit starts in October, and gets worse and worse until I’m knee deep in wrinkly corpses ready to explode when they finally leave in March.

On to the week you missed while stuck in THE GODDAMN FUCKING POST OFFICE:

Don’t forget, tomorrow is the Weekly Hypothetical, so email me or comment me a hypothetical question soon so I can come up with a sufficiently incorrect answer.