Phil Gulley: All The Rage
These days, most gripers seem to be white guys. Every now and then, I hear a disgruntled woman whine about things, but she’s likely married to a grouchy white guy, and the surliness has rubbed off on her.
As the narrative goes, Hank the Dog was born in Oklahoma, abused by his original owner, and taken in by some well-meaning soul who had too many dogs already. There is, from what little information I can coax from my reticent son, an Underground Railroad for rescued dogs, and Hank came north to Putnam County, not far from our home.
I was hiking in the woods this past fall and stepped on a snake. It was an Inland Taipan, the most toxic snake in the world. One bite can emit enough poison to kill 250,000 mice, or 100 humans—provided they’re not obese, in which case it would only kill 50 or so. It is a shy reptile, once found only in central Australia. But due to global warming, it is now found in Orange County, Indiana, where I stepped on it.
In the middle decades of the 20th century, every community had a draft board, composed of local citizens whose responsibility was to interview young men and discern their fitness for military service. As you can imagine, it was not a wildly popular practice. And when young men stopped cooperating by shooting themselves in the foot, the practice ended.
Every year around Christmas, I think what a burden it is to be Christian and consider joining another religion with fewer Yuletide demands. Addressing the cards and pretending I like fruitcake leave me exhausted. I toyed with the idea of becoming a Buddhist monk, which is just exotic enough to be hip, but then I remembered they have to set themselves on fire if a war comes along. As much as I dislike Christmas, I still prefer it over immolation.