By Cindy Phillips
Actually, I have no desire to be President. But last week was Election Day, so the political catch phrase seemed fitting for this column.
There really aren’t a lot of positive sides to getting older. Our memory fades, our waist expands, our eyesight blurs and people seem to get on our nerves at lightning speed. The good news is that folks fully expect us to get cranky as we get older, so we get away with a lot. We can speak our mind, even if it is contrary to popular consensus. We can criticize. And we can continually use the phrase “back in the good old days,” though it does give away our senior citizen status when we say that.
When I find myself getting irritated with things I cannot change, I fantasize about what I would do if I were in charge. I would be passing bills and vehemently using my veto power to make things right … in my humble opinion, of course.
So if you elect me to be in charge, here are a few of the burning issues I would address:
Fashion designers would be mandated to make clothes that fit. Pants would rise up to the waistline and would stay there even when you sat down. You could once again tuck in shirts and maybe even accessorize with a belt.
A belt? Remember those? Ladies, we used to wear our belts proudly. We had skinny ones that threaded through the loops of our jeans and we had wide ones that were slung over our hips while wearing a slinky dress. Belts were adorned with studs, rhinestones and unique buckles. When we were bloated or carrying a few extra pounds, we simply buckled to the next notch. When we were feeling slim, we cinched them to our hearts’ content. I held on to my collection of belts in the hopes that someday my waist would welcome them back. I’m sure someone had a good laugh over them at the Goodwill store.
Political candidates would be forbidden to mention their opponent in any political advertisement. The script of every political commercial would be limited to listing the merits of the candidate. If the opponent’s name was mentioned, the advertisement would fade to black, never to be seen again. And while we’re at it, no lawn signs or flyers stapled to telephone poles.
Children would be seen and not heard. Ok, perhaps that phrase is extreme, but our parents and grandparents swore by it. In fact, I think I may have seen that phrase in needlepoint on pillows on my grandma’s couch. But seriously, parents would be required to teach their offspring proper manners, including the correct use of “please” and “thank you.” There would be a required course in the rules of interruption–in other words, only if the house was on fire. And let’s throw in a one-day seminar on “The Proper Practice of Speaking Only When Spoken To.”
Home-schooling would be outlawed. Every child would be required to leave the house in the morning and head to a place where he or she would not only learn the three R’s, but also how to play well with others. And it would be year-round.
The term “PC” would have no meaning. People would be expected to live by the Golden Rule, which would naturally eliminate the occurrence of anyone being offended by the actions of another.
The Pledge of Allegiance would be recited every day by every citizen and “The Star Spangled Banner” would continue to be sung at the commencement of every sporting event. I might even require people to get misty-eyed during the song just like I do every time I hear it.
Frivolous lawsuits would be thrown out of court on a daily basis. Common sense would be the law.
Video games would all automatically shut off at 8 p.m., while downloading a violent video game would cause your electronic device to self-destruct.
Every human being would be required to stop and smell the roses, but no one would be allowed to look through rose-colored glasses. Pots of gold would be required at the end of every rainbow. All clover would be required to have four leaves.
And just for the heck of it, all music would once again be recorded on vinyl. Let’s face it, nothing beats cranking up the Victrola, gently landing a Sinatra album and slow dancing in the kitchen.
I rest my case. Now go cast your ballot.
Cindy Phillips is a columnist for The Mountain Times, firstname.lastname@example.org.