My Lousy World

I mourn what used to be

By Doug Blough
Posted 6/21/22

I ain’t a big fan of change, and I’ll say “ain’t” if I want to, cause I’m too old to change. Change has always been an enemy. Hard to believe, but I’m told …

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My Lousy World

I mourn what used to be


I ain’t a big fan of change, and I’ll say “ain’t” if I want to, cause I’m too old to change. Change has always been an enemy. Hard to believe, but I’m told when my mother switched to a new diaper brand, I raised holy hell.

Here it is 66 years later and I’m sick to death of all the “new and improved” changes. I’ve stayed single and lived 39 years in this musty townhouse for a reason. I don’t want my address changed, my TV channel guide changed, and my wildly-dysfunctional sleeping patterns must live on. I’m still wearing several shirts from the 70s for crying out loud; in my opinion, paisley will always be in style.

I know what works. Believe me: it wouldn’t work for you, as I’ve got some unconventional ways about me, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. To quote Popeye, I yam what I yam and no girlfriend or life coach need apply; I’m quite comfortable in my cluttered chaos. My planets were all aligned … then stuff started to change.

Take my Wi-Fi ... please. How do I make peace with a new email address when everyone knows me as Now I’m This all started when nephew Rusty drug me kicking and screaming to drop my expensive cable for the drastic change of Hulu and Netflix — a TV addict’s bad dream. There’s no such thing as returning to “previous channel,” no numerically-simple channel guide, and forget freeze-frame if you wish to see an image clearly. If you want to reverse or fast-forward, good luck. You lose all perspective of where you are.

So Bresnan, Charter, or whatever they’re calling it now — they were “VCN”when we first met — wised up that I’m no longer a paycheck and disabled my universally-known Charter address. So how are my hundreds of contacts supposed to know that? What vital messages am I missing? Perhaps Publisher’s Clearing House or even a potential new friend from Nigeria who only needs transportation costs to get here? Changing addresses changes lives.

Everything is changing, and for the worse. All this shopping online is a dastardly evil, putting Mom & Pop stores out on the street. Not only that, but I’m the last of a dying breed — men who love malls. That doesn’t make me any less of a macho man; if anything, more so since malls were teeming with gorgeous, nubile gals, often in pleasingly-casual attire. Again, enjoying mall people-watching doesn’t make me any less of a man or any more of an aging creeper. Somewhere in between at worst.

Also, being a newspaper man — contributor and consumer — I’m disheartened by so many saying, “I haven’t read a newspaper in years. I get my news from online.” Oh yeah? Well, why not do all your dating via online hookups? Why go out for a full-course meal when you can just throw a TV dinner in the microwave? Why fly a kite in the park when you can just pop a pill? I’m not prone to quoting Cosmo Kramer, but he speaks wisdom.

When I want news or to do the Jumbles, I need to hear the sound of rustling paper. Getting it all on the computer is like kissing your sister through a screen door, and let me be clear, my sister and I were just friends. And we liked our newspapers and malls.

And now I’m to understand there’s no longer a Baker prowling the floors of the Trib? Terry ushered me in, CJ nurtured my journalistic proclivity, and Tessa — aka Schweigert — has been a constant for a coon’s age. At least my dear proofreader friend, Sandra, “Bubbles” Thiel is still on the job, but the day I hear that Bonner is a goner, I may just put My Lousy World to bed.

I’ll be found on a bench at a deserted mall doing a crossword, a lone tear creeping down my cheek.  

My Lousy World