The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

August 13, 2013

Trust me, I'm as old as I need to be

By Chuck Pinkey
The Daily Star

---- — As I slump further and further into senior citizenhood, certain things begin to annoy me that I’d have ignored a few years back. You know, little things that lead one to believe that the gene pool could use a good cleansing.

The other day I went for gas and one of the guys asked me to get him a pack of cigarettes. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? However, the genetic defect behind the counter asks me for proof of age. I said, “Thank you, Miss, but I’m 63 years old.” She replied, “I still have to see proof.” 

“You are kidding me!” was my response. “My boss told me to proof everyone,” she countered. Now, I’m in hurry and feeling grumpy. “Are you serious?” I asked in disbelief, as people lined up behind me. “Are you telling me that I have to go out to my truck and get my driver’s license to prove to you that I’m over 18?”

“Yep.” she said. Knowing when I’m beaten, I go outside, get my license, and return to the scene of the crime. On the job application for that establishment, there should be a “yes/no” box labeled: “Are you capable of thought?”

I’ll be dipped, but the very same day I stop at another 24/7 type store to get a six-pack of beer, and the young lady asks for my birthday. I’m thinking, “Here we go again!” I smiled and asked, “Do I look underage?” 

She replied, “No, I just have to enter everyone’s birth date when they buy alcohol.” Sounds reasonable and the young lady was just doing her job, so I answered, “August 2nd, 1919.” Never missed a beat! I’d have hoped this product of public education would have realized and questioned the date, but no! Maybe I look 94 years old? 

Next, in the big supermarkets and chain stores, if your ear lobes are stretched so big that one can read the Daily Star through the holes and you have six or more facial piercings, I’d rather you not handle my food.

Furthermore, I know you cannot make change without the register telling you how much to give. So, how in the world do you expect to tell if that $50 bill is real or counterfeit? Therefore, quit wasting my time by holding it up to the light, and making like you know what you’re doing!

Have you noticed that TV advertisement showing helicopters covering Mt. McKinley with plastic wrap? Apparently, we are using enough plastic garbage bags to cover the mountain each year, and as we all know, “plastic will stay in a landfill for 1,000 years.”

However, if we use this particular heavy-duty garbage bag, it will hold more garbage and therefore, we won’t cover as much of the mountain next year. But, does anyone stop to think that it might be a good thing that plastic lies inert and doesn’t decay and leach into the ecosystem “for 1,000 years?”

Next, does anyone really believe President Obama’s Press Secretary Jim Carney is actually answering questions? If you do, please check “no” on the “Are you capable of thought?” question on your next job application.

When you enter I-88, you are supposed to yield, as in “It’s not your turn.” If we can move over, we will, but often, we are being passed by the Dixieland Express and have nowhere to go. I know this is difficult, but focus! We were there before you. Wait for an opening.

Not all puppies and kittens are produced in puppy and kitten mills. Would you please stop with the teary-eyed actresses and pathetic videos of dogs and cats making me feel guilty sitting there at night eating my $3.99 per half gallon Breyer’s Fudge Royale ice cream, when “for only thirty cents a day ...”

What about the starving children in Africa and Central America? After watching 30 years of videos for these poor souls, they must be dead by now. If they’re not, shouldn’t we give our money to them rather than to dogs and cats? 

Shipping and handling is my favorite. Buy that dream gift for the Missus for only $19.95, but wait! If you order right now, they will double the order! Just pay separate shipping and handling of $6.95. Can’t you put them both in the same box?

I can’t tell you how many times in the last 35 years someone has come into our shop and asked, “Do you have a bathroom?” One day, I’m gonna answer, “No, we use the bush out back.”

I’m not advocating genocide against stupid people, tantalizing as that might be! I’m just saying “Let’s remove all the warning labels, and let the situation sort itself out.”

CHUCK PINKEY is a retired area businessman. He can be reached at The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of The Daily Star and its editorial board, but the author thinks they ought to.