Recently, I was called cranky in an article posted at the Huffington Post. The good news is that it’s one of the few times that anything approaching the truth has been posted there. The part I resented, though, was having my crankiness attributed to age. The fact is, I am a precocious curmudgeon. But the question that springs to mind is why more people aren’t cranky these days when there is so much to be cranky about.
For instance, it used to irk me that Carl Bernstein, a rather minor footnote in America’s history, who only came to prominence because an anonymous snitch chose to pass along secrets to him and Bob Woodward, was depicted in two major motion pictures, “All the President’s Men” (Dustin Hoffman) and “Heartburn” (Jack Nicholson), when so many more deserving people haven’t been featured in any. But that pales when compared to the number of movies that have glorified Che Guevara, a blood-thirsty villain. In addition to numerous TV productions, he has shown up in “Che!” (Omar Sharif), “Evita” (Antonio Banderas), “Motorcycle Diaries” (Eduardo Noreiga) and “Che: Parts One and Two” (Benecio Del Toro).
Because I listen to a lot of talk radio, I keep coming across Christopher Hitchens. I should first confess to being envious. The fact that he has managed to become a best-selling author by promoting himself as the fellow who thinks religion is a terrible thing truly boggles my mind. Why, I keep asking myself, are people buying his book? I’m not suggesting he’s not entitled to his opinion, but why on earth does anybody care what Hitchens thinks about religion? I mean, are there some religious people who are going to become atheists because of anything he says? Frankly, I have this feeling that he protests a little too much, and that on his death bed, he’ll hedge his bet by calling for a minister, a priest, a rabbi, an imam and a witch doctor.
Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve come across a few surveys that got my attention. In one, it was found that 41% of women in their 20s would marry for money, 74% of women in their 30s and over 60% of women who were 40 or older. The man’s looks were of little or no concern, but he had to have at least $2.5 million. It wasn’t that love didn’t matter to the ladies, but it was love of money.
That reminded me that several years ago, there was a survey conducted by a woman’s magazine -- perhaps the Ladies Home Journal -- that asked mothers of all ages if, having it all to do over again, they would still opt to have children. By a whopping margin, they said not a chance.