At one time the Earth was dominated by a strange and wonderful creature, The Curmudgeon. I think that the Curmudgeons were the happiest creatures in the world. They saw things that the rest of us didn't and exhibited no trepidation about pointing them out. I, myself was once a curmudgeon in training, but I couldn't yell at little children, "Hey get off of my lawn!" (Having no lawn, just a balcony, it made no sense to me. Ergo, I flunked a required course, Grumpy 101.)
We all knew somebody who fit the description. You know, the uncle who you dreaded seeing, but you loved repeating the stories about him. I often felt that Marvel Comics should get rid of some of its lesser super heroes and replace it with The Curmudgeon.
"The Adventures of The Curmudgeon. Slower than your mother’s goodbye on the telephone! More flatulent than you old bulldog! Able to scare children with a single growl! ("Look! Up in the laxative aisle!" "It's a grump!" "It's a grouch" "It's The Curmudgeon!")... Yes, it's The Curmudgeon ... strange visitor from another era, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men! The Curmudgeon ... who can change the course of mighty dinners, clear rooms with his strange odor, and who, disguised as (fill in the blank) , unwanted relative for a great American family, fights a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way! And now, another exciting episode, in The Adventures of The Curmudgeon!"
The Curmudgeon is pretty much an American character. In the fifties, he sat on the park bench yelling about communism. In the sixties he complained that you can't tell the boys from the girls. In the Seventies he started to hate the Government. The Eighties, he was truly miserable. That is because he was happy, he had Ronald Reagan. The Nineties brought pure joy to our hero, he had Clinton and Monica to grumble about.
I'm afraid that this past decade was too much for the Curmudgeon. He was conquered by a stranger more dangerous creature, "The Tea Partiasaurus."
The "Tea Partiasaurus," without the obvious charm and sense of humor of the Curmudgeon, also has major complaints; 1) Gay Marriage, 2) taxing the wealthy, death taxes (to those worth in excess of $5,000,000.00), etc... They'll fund unjust wars, give tax credits to wealthy oil companies, worry about a birth certificate, object to the elimination of junk food on a school lunch menu, let insurance companies, not doctors, control your health care. They are the new American.
Someday they too will be extinguished. What will replace them.