Feb 232015
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English: Evidence of Logging. The photograph s...

English: Evidence of Logging. The photograph shows the main track through the woods on Houghton Moor (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I know I should channel my annoyances at my aging body into wonderfully articulate and cantankerous rants, but I am not sure I am ready for that.  As if I need any more of this getting old stuff.  We went camping this weekend for my 12 year olds birthday.  Man oh man, I felt old.

Let’s just say that this trip I was glad to have a mattress to sleep on in the tent trailer.

I was glad to sleep in until 9 AM on 2 of the 3 days.

I went to bed before midnight.

I couldn’t get up the hill without falling and messing up my knee.  Well, I probably would have done that anyway.

So here I sit.  I feel like an old man when I move.  I am slow to get going and tired all of the time.  My body is betraying me.

But then, in my mind, I feel like a 14 year old kid who is going to be in trouble all of the time.  There is not the place where I feel like the 38 year old man that I should be, well am in reality.

When do you actually start to feel the age you are?  Where do you feel like the adult you should feel like?

Hell I have 4 kids, the oldest just turned 12.  I shouldn’t feel like I am barely older than her.  But I do.

Maybe I am just tired and the constant stream of caffeine is eroding my psyche, maybe I need a therapist.  Maybe I need a big jug of rum.

Whatever shall I do…..I want to end up similar to Ralph, retired and cantankerous, living life how it comes, but right now, I am going to lose my mind and be running around the nursing home in a loincloth, waving my cane and flashing the old ladies.  Ahhh Dementia….you minx you.  When will you visit?

Anyway, what think you all?  I want some constructive information on what to do, or you can just go and jump off the short pier.




Justin is the young Coot with a Cantankerous Soul who continues to be educated by older, more cootish Ralph and Bob. His Cantankerosity is his own.

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Down with vegetarianism!

 Posted by at 11:03  Down with
Feb 232015
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Image via Wikipedia

“Vegetables are interesting but lack a sense of purpose when unaccompanied by a good cut of meat.”

Fran Lebowitz

There are many reasons why vegetarianism is wrong including the proven fact that it is impossible to get everything your body needs for health from vegetables alone.  Still, the most important reason of all as Ms. Lebowitz says is that without meat, it is impossible to have a satisfying meal.

Humans are omnivores.

Let’s face it, human beings are omnivores. It is one of the big reasons that we dominate the animal kingdom. We would and could eat anything that we could find. It is why you find humans all over the world in every climate and habitat. Our ancestors ate anything they could get; a little meat here, a little fruit there and vegetables to fill in the holes. Pre-civilization, men were hunters and we have the cave paintings to prove it. As civilization progressed, men became farmers, keeping herds of animals for meat and milk while they grew crops both to feed their animals and to bolster their diets.

What are vegetarians afraid of?

So why is it that today we have so many people who insist on avoiding meat? What are they thinking to put thousands of years of history and success with meat eating on hold and to cause them to risk their health with such foolishness? You have to give a pass to folks who for religious reasons won’t eat meat because they fear they might eat their reincarnated Aunt Josephine. Coots are not going to criticize serious religion here (although we might be caught smirking from time to time). What can possibly cause normal people to shun meat? I am no shrink but my opinion is that these folks have got themselves totally detached from reality.

Nobody farms anymore.

Almost nobody today grows up in a rural, agricultural environment unlike the golden days of my youth. The only animals people know today are their dogs and cats. They would certainly never think of eating their pets and companions and therefore make an unrealistic comparison between farm animals and pets.  This is very different from the more realistic view of animals back when we were an agrarian society. Even forty years ago, people were closer to farming. If you didn’t grow up on a farm, you knew somebody who did or you had grandparents who farmed. Farmers have a more healthy understanding about animals and what they are for – food! This was how the world worked. It was the pattern of life. Men raise animals and then eat them. Period, end of story.

All they know is cute little animals.

Today because nobody ever sees a farm animal or experiences the process of making food, they get neurotic about cute little creatures. I remember raising chickens as a kid, first in our suburban house and then on our farm. One of my earliest memories is watching my father kill a chicken for dinner by chopping off its head. My brothers and I enjoyed watching the headless chicken flop all around the yard. We knew first hand the reality of a chicken with its head cut off. We knew that the chicken was not tortured. Its demise was quick and merciful. And we knew that this is what chickens are for – eating.

People today live in a fantasy where nothing is messy.

People today know nothing about the realities of feeding yourself from your own labors and they have access to anything that takes their fancy just by visiting the local supermarket without any pain or effort. Because they love their pets, they confuse pets with animals whose only reason for existing is to feed humans. This makes them suckers for organizations like PETA with its confused morality that equates farm animals to humans. If you do anything to a farm animal that you wouldn’t do to a human then you are bad. Sloppy logic leads to wrong conclusions and unhealthy eating driven by confused morality. The emotional pablum that eating animals is cruel drives them to become vegetarians to sooth their confused consciences.

Survival of the fittest – as always.

In the end, I suspect that Darwin will have the last laugh. In the long run, those foolish individuals that damage their health with deluded morality and the pablum of vegetarianism will fail to procreate and raise healthy offspring leaving the world to meat eaters.


Ralph is the inspiration for Cantankerous Old Coots and is our Grand Duke of Cantankerousness

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Three Cheers for Fat!

 Posted by at 11:03  rants
Feb 232015
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No-fat is no-good

You know what really kills me? It is all these no-fat, lo-fat foods. Not that you can’t still find the good tasting stuff with all the goodness of real high quality fat around. Ben and Jerry’s is still going strong but our  whole society is just over loaded with message against fat. You would think that fat was a plague from the devil just like that insidious apple in the garden instead of God’s gift to good tasting food and healthy living. You heard me. I said healthy and fat in the same sentence.

Fat is part of a healthy diet no matter what the government says

The body needs fat to be healthy and eating fat has very little to do with getting fat. Blame that on the carbs. Carbs are the evil dudes, especially the simple carbs like sugar and pasta. You know that fat has got to be  OK because the government is against it. If you have been around even a little while you realize that the government strenuously avoids accepting anything as healthy- just try to get anything approved by the FDA. When they do accept something, however, it becomes chiseled in stone, like the ten commandments. And when they discover the ‘truth’, they spare no expense with your money to harangue you with it.

We have all been brainwashed

By now, everybody believes that their health depends upon eliminating all fat from their diet because the government says so. And what do we find to help us? The helpful food companies oblige us with lo-fat and no-fat alternatives that either taste awful or are loaded with more carbs to make them somewhat palatable. Simple sheep that we are these days, we buy the stuff thinking we are being healthy by eating things we would never eat if taste were the criterion. These lo-fat and no-fat treats don’t spare us any calories. They just replace the fat with carbs which quickly settle on our ever expanding bellies. They aren’t so filling as the versions with fat and so we can eat more of the lo and no fat items.  And we do.

Eat Fat and Enjoy

Stop the foolishness and enjoy life. Eat food that is tasty, healthy and full fat. You will eat less. Enjoy it more and stay healthy. If you want to cut something in your life – start with the government propaganda and then cut out the carbs.


Ralph is the inspiration for Cantankerous Old Coots and is our Grand Duke of Cantankerousness

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Down with Health Nuts

 Posted by at 11:01  Down with
Feb 232015
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If you're another one of those health nuts who...
Image by Ed Yourdon via Flickr

“Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in hospitals dying of nothing.”

Redd Fox

Unless you are a total recluse, you know some health nuts. These people are fixated on ‘taking care of their bodies’. They would never dream of eating a hamburger. It’s got to be a broiled chicken breast or if they are total loons- a vegeburger. Then they pretend to enjoy their food while they smirk at you and your unhealthy choice. They know how much fat is in anything you name and whether it is saturated, unsaturated, poly-unsaturated or, the crème de la crème of bad, trans fat. These are the people who decided ,in the interest of their own good health, not to eat anything that tastes good. Since they get no pleasure from food, they compensate by making you feel bad eating something delicious. It is an evil perversion and health nuts deserve a special place in hell.

It’s pretty clear that health nuttiness doesn’t make them healthier. They don’t look any better. They get sick just as often and instead of enjoying life they take pride in making sure that anybody around them can’t enjoy life. There is never an end to their quest for perfect health. Taking one step on the path, instead of producing praise just causes them to step up the program- and the abuse

“Bob, it is so good that you have given up eating read meat. Your body will be so happy.”

As you smile at their encouragement they continue.

“Of course, you really want to give up that nasty meat all together. It’s so bad for you.”

And its not just food. Maybe you start taking walks to keep that blood flowing and clear your head. You feel pretty good. Just don’t tell the health nut.

“Fred, that’s a great first step.”

Don’t get cocky because they continue.

“We’ll have you doing an Iron Man in no time.”

This coot has learned over time not to give a health nut any encouragement. These unhappy people only live to suck all the joy de vivre out of anyone unfortunate enough to be in the same room with them. Don’t give them an inch. Don’t concede even the smallest of their points because when you do, they have you where they want you- feeling guilty.

Enjoy yourself and let health be damned. Eat that savory hamburger with pleasure, wiping your chin from time to time as the delicious juices drip. Walk if you must but be careful about jogging because the next step is running a marathon. Focus on enjoyment and don’t let guilt get his foot in the door. Health nuts have forgone pleasure to achieve the false nirvana of ‘good health’. The only pleasure they have left is suckering you to follow them. If you concede an inch to their fixation, you are as good as doomed to join them. If not in the achievement of perfect health- at least by reaching a state of perfect unhappiness.

It is a slippery slope to health nuttitidude.

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Ralph is the inspiration for Cantankerous Old Coots and is our Grand Duke of Cantankerousness

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Jul 292014
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Cute Skaterboy and Girl - Nike Shoot
Image by vanessa_hutd via Flickr

The arrogance of youth

You know the ones I mean. Those skinny high school and college kids you see working at the supermarket or fast food place. The ones with the skinny asses barely big enough for one back pocket, let alone two. They can hardly keep their pants up because there is nothing to hang them on. These guys can and will eat anything and never gain a pound. With the arrogance of youth, these guys believe that they will never let themselves get out of control. They will never get fat.  They look at old guys with bellies as failures. You can see it in their eyes, drawn to your bulging belly when you order a tasteless salad and diet coke. They are thinking “Fat loser.” A pox on those guys.

Getting big is inevitable

As the years pile on it seems like just looking at something tasty adds a pound or two. There is always another temptation to resist and even when you apply all the will power you can muster you keep having to buy bigger pants . Worse, even those bigger pants can’t contain a belly you can’t suck in anymore. In fact it it is starting to lop over an over-stressed belt. Even with starving and denying yourself the pleasures of desert or a second helping of lasagna, the truth is hard to hide. You are fat!

It wouldn’t be so bad being fat so long as it meant that you could eat what you like. The reality is in the vain hope of getting back to skinny, you cut back and eat what is supposed to be healthy stuff and give up eating what you really want; ice cream, french fries, hamburgers and pasta. Even with all that deprivation, you are still fat. The consolation is that if you indulged your appetite and ate what you crave, you would be even fatter – a double-wide instead of a mere wide body.

Remember the good old days

It wasn’t always like this. Back in high school, and even college, 32 inch jeans would hang on your hipbones and three or four burgers would be an evening snack. Cheesecake? Ice cream? It was all good. Well, times change and one day you notice that you aren’t skinny any more. Those hipbones have some padding and you actually celebrate no longer being a wimp. Then a year or so later you develop bulges. Your cheeks are fuller, you sport a definite belly. Those 32 inch jeans are a distant memory. You are getting fat. Maybe it is time for a diet.

That is when it gets crazy because you still think of yourself as the skinny kid who can eat anything. You are in denial and imagine that with a little diet you can get back to your old self. You starve. You diet. Maybe you even take up exercise – running or weights but the sad truth is that you are never getting your skinny body back. Your metabolism has moved on, slowed down and is prepared to turn anything you eat into beautiful, bulging fat. You have a choice. You can be an unhappy fat man, eating rabbit food feeling deprived as you try to maintain your current level of overweight or a happy obese man eating what you like and getting bigger every day. It is a curse.

Their day will come

So I say down with those skinny guys. Those kids working at the supermarket or the fast food places, flaunting their lean bodies and gratifying their young appetites with whatever food takes their fancy. Each skinny ass just mocks your ample one billowing inside your elastic waist fat boy jeans. A pox on the lean waisted guy at the deli counter eying your big belly with disgust as you drool over the hefty sandwiches and rich potato salad and finally turn away, belly rumbling. Some days it is too much and you give in, flaunting your belly as you step up and and order a hefty sandwich, both potato and macaroni salad and a big wedge of cheesecake with cream soda to wash it down. Let him smirk at the shameless fat guy eating like a hog, you think as you stuff your gut happily. Let him feel superior with his youthful metabolism. His day will come.

I’ve come to accept that my skinny days are gone and never to return. I can live with eating tasteless , healthy food and still getting bigger. But I also have a way to handle those skinny guys with an attitude. Now I like to look at those skinny guys and see the future fat guys they are destined to be. I watch them fixing my lunch and imagine 50 pounds packed on their skinny frames. I smile at their double chins and flabby bellies. Let them feel superior. Time will put them in their place. Thirty years from now they will be where I am now, fat and hungry longing for something good to eat but longing to be the skinny guy they used to be. I know that I will pay for this lapse after eating a fattening snack and discovering when I let out my belt  that my pants are already stretched to capacity. Time to move up to bigger ones again. Skinny young guys will learn that lesson soon enough.


Ralph is the inspiration for Cantankerous Old Coots and is our Grand Duke of Cantankerousness

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