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"I'm a dinosaur"
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The Spectator
founded 2004 by ron cruger
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 by Ron Cruger
rcruger@san.rr.com
2013 Spectator Ron - The Spectator All Rights Reserved
C
        I still check the oil before making the drive downtown, even though it’s only fifteen miles from the house. I can still add a quart when it’s needed. There was a day, long ago, when I could go to my local Pep Boy’s store, buy six spark plugs and replace the old ones. Took me a half-hour and cost about ten bucks.
        I recently asked my car mechanic if we should replace the spark plugs in my aging car (it’s ten years old). His answer was, “Not unless the warning light comes on at one hundred thousand miles and notifies you to change them. And by the way, taking out the old plugs and replacing them with new ones would cost you about four hundred and fifty dollars.” That’s only four hundred and forty dollars more than it used to be!
        A recent visit with my daughter and grandson made me realize that the world has progressed rapidly and left me somewhat behind. Or, perhaps, I have chosen to be left behind. Regardless, behind I am.
        My daughter was working on her computer. She wore headphones and a tiny speaker which enabled her to speak on her cell phone as she worked the computer. My grandson pulled an “iPhone” from shirt pocket and explained that it can be a telephone, get the internet, do almost unlimited communication feats and do all this by merely sliding his finger over the surface of the device.
        I went home and for the next couple of hours thought about the position of my thoughts in relation to the reality of current events.
        There are things that I may never get used to.
       For example- I don’t like guys in the movies and television with dirty looking stubble on their faces. Shave it off or grow a beard! Make up your mind, but in-between is sloppy looking.
        I can do without those baggy, low-slung cargo pants. Who needs a dozen pockets hanging out all over? And who needs to see parts of their rear-end anatomy that I don’t care to see.
        I don’t like seeing people in the super market or on the street, talking to invisible partners. They have those gadgets clamped to their ears and they’re talking and gesturing, annoying anyone near them, and they go about their annoyance carrying a silly smile on their face. Used to be phone calls were private. I liked it that way.
        Kids don’t play in the streets anymore. They go home and play on their computers and get fat and lazy. I like it when I see kids getting exercise and burning off some of their hormones and natural energies by running, jumping and kicking. I’d rather have them playing in the streets and in vacant lots than playing “Gangsta Car Thieves” in their bedrooms.
        People used to be more polite on the roadways. Not everyone, but many. The roads, the mall parking lots, the neighborhood streets, used to be slightly slower moving. Now it’s all a replay of the “Indy 500.” The motto seems to be, “Ain’t nobody gonna beat me.”
        I liked Ronald Reagan. He made Americans feel proud of being American. He was handsome and when he spoke you wanted to believe him. He built our pride.
        I don’t like the foul language on television now. It doesn’t excite me, just makes me aware that someone can’t write very well and tries to get everyone excited by using the “f” word. I don’t like it because our children are learning to use dirty words in their everyday conversations.
        It used to be I could root for my favorite teams because they were “my” teams – “The Yankees,” the, “Rams,” the, “Lakers,” the, “Padres.” Now it takes a computer to find out who got sold, traded and who just joined the team. It just illustrates that the teams are now a collection of millionaires, offering their services to the highest bidder.
        I liked it when movie stars were mysterious, near-perfect idols. I don’t need to know about every mistake, every pimple they have. If they’re gay, or horny or flat-footed don’t tell me. Let me like them or hate them for what they are on the silver screen.
        We need a guy like Robert Kennedy.
        We need more hippies who march for peace. We need to understand that a person can oppose what the President or Vice-President says and still be a good American. They don’t belong on an “enemies list.”
        We need the emergence of another group like the Beatles.
         I don’t like Hip Hop, Rap, Gangsta Rap or grunge noise (I can’t call it music).
        On the other hand, there are a lot of things I do like.
        The hot dogs at Costco, chocolate shakes at In-and-Out Burger, my two kids, my wife, most of my cousins and my new tennis racket.