And Don is off to the races, so hold on!


By Don Rush

There’s no better way to start the school year than to show the kiddies how to complain, because it’s the most American thing we as Americans are good at. Since it’s the beginning of the school year, I thought I’d start on a rant. (Give me a break, it’s for the kids.) For the most part I have little sympathy for chronic complainers. I guess, if you get right down to it, I have little sympathy for complainers, period.

Whine, whine, whine. Moan, moan, moan.

Complain, complain, complain, blah, blah, blah. I guess I am not that nice of a guy — definitely not sympathetic. But, if it makes you feel better, you can call me a hypocrite, because I intend to whine, moan and complain in the paragraphs to follow. If you’re like me and don’t want to waste your time while I express my dissatisfaction, please turn the page. However, if you like to gawk at car wrecks, if you love to share in the misery of others (if only from afar), square up to the bar, order a pint and we can cry in our beers together.

Let the bellyaching commence!

For the last 30-ish years computers have made our lives easier. The internet has brought a wealth of information to our fingertips — not to mention a veritable cornucopia of images no community newspaper would publish, but I digress . . . ahem.

With the internet has come electronic mail and social media. And, while both email and social media are great ways to stay in touch with folks you wouldn’t spend a dime to call or 50 cents to buy a stamp for, it is also getting to be burdensome.

How do I say this? I like getting emails. I like sending emails. I like getting jokes and pictures from all sorts of readers. They are oftentimes entertaining and fun to look at. But (here’s where my beef comes into play), the one thing I hate the most about emails are when they have phrases like this in the subject line:

This is truly priceless . . .” or, “You gotta open this, it’s s-o-o-o true . . .” or, “This is the funniest email I’ve ever read!”

I’ll start by saying this: STOP IT. Stop it because if I see them, I automatically think it’s some sort of scam, or phishing operation going on. Those emails go right in the trash.

Stop being so-o-o-o smarmy, upbeat and — what’s the word I’m looking for — cutesy. Yeah, that’s it. Stop being so cutesy. Your emails and online posts are not “priceless,” “s-o-o-o true,” or the “funniest” things ever. It’s either cheap, fake or boring. And, cheap, fact-less and boring it shall remain until I, me (the guy large and in charge) deems it otherwise. It’s a big responsibility and a thankless job, but it’s what I do, you can thank me later.

To me, it’s my opinion that counts. Not yours. Don’t take it too hard, though. I’m a highly trained and kinda’ well paid professional. Yeah, I don’t like movie reviewers’ opinions either. I’ve always had a problem with folks telling me what to think about anything. By using the time honored technique of trial and error, I like to come to my own conclusions. So, don’t tell me your mass-forwarded emails are priceless, cute or funny. Don’t hide behind a computer screen and troll folks who you disagree with on social media. Be nice. Have conversations. Use your grownup words like adults, minus all the cussing and gossiping.

* * *

What and how folks on social media write also shivers me timbers. Cute memes, mean tone, name calling and bullying is the norm. And, it’s leaking into how folks send emails to me, like for letters to the editor. Stop calling folks names. Be nice. Use reason and logic.

* * *

Oh, and while I’m on a roll, stop with the cute abbreviations slash acronyms. I am clearly either not hip enough nor bright enough (or both) to understand things like lol, wtf and btw. I mean I can fill in the blanks as to what these letters could stand for, unfortunately my mind goes to the gutter and most of the time the meanings I come up with are not fit for a family publication. If you want me to take the time to read, I want you to take the time to spell out your words.

Remember: I am dense, thick-skulled, puddin’ headed (pick your insult) Neanderthal, so spell it out. If lol means “lots of luck” just say so. Please, don’t make me go to the gutters again.

* * *

Before I quit griping, grousing, growling and grumbling, let me give everybody who communicates with the written word a bit of advice: For the love of God and all that is decent in humanity, don’t use all capital letters! This is nothing new. Any printer since Guttenburg who’s worth their salt knows not to use all capital letters. Why?

BECAUSE IT IS REALLY, REALLY, REALLY REALLY HARD TO READ. If you must express yourself loudly in type, one or two words can be all caps, but the rest should be in lower case and then use an exclamation point!

Well, I don’t know about you, but I have finished my yammering and just like Tony the Tiger, I feel g-r-e-a-t!

Send emails (without the words priceless, etc) to His Crankiness:

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