Quit pushing it

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 13, 2003

One subject I usually avoid writing about is &uot;Gays.&uot; I don’t know if the word should be capitalized, they do represent 2 percent of the population. But I know I’ve heard enough about this subject lately to fill a book that I would not read. Being what some call &uot;normal,&uot; I don’t want to read or hear about the tribulations of gays any more than I want to hear about the trials of us &uot;straights.&uot; But recently TV and other media seem determined to push &uot;gay&uot; into the limelight; gay bishops, gay preachers, gay schools, gay teachers, gay scout leaders, gay parades, gay politicians, gay marriages, even unmarried gays adopting children. Enough already, media, let gays go back to being as quiet about their lifestyle as straights are about theirs. Allow them to go about their lives and stop unveiling their every attempt at legitimacy and acceptable existence. Hell, there’s never been any doubt about that; they are even mentioned in &uot;The Book.&uot; I experienced contact with what I thought was strange behavior at age 10, and later in the Army back in the ’40s. &uot;Gays,&uot; a name those folks seem to be content with, can be what they want to be with the blessing of many; if only they and the media will just back off on rubbing their uncomfortable issues in the public’s face.

Those all-knowing Federal officials have reported that only about 100,000 vultures exist in Virginia. I say nuts; I counted 65 on less than a hundred yards of beach where they were enjoying a feast of small clams. Last fall Lake Western Branch was down about 8 feet. The water dropped so fast during that drought that millions of small black clams, mussels, whatever, could not retreat into the wet sand. The heat killed them and opened their shells exposing them to the elements. The vultures picked the beaches clean. I see them circling over our woods almost daily, policing the area. Some neighbors have been pestered by them landing on a roof of a house or outbuilding, painting it white by morning. They fly lazily overhead, always keeping an eye on me but I am not yet ready for them. At night they find a dead pine and occupy every limb, no matter the weather. No one will convince me these tough old birds are declining.

So much fuss over a mere NBA basketball player, born tall enough to grow into the big leagues. The media is boring us to death with every move of every character in this play. Important national news takes a back seat to constant speculation about the coming trial. That means we will suffer silly tidbits until a trial takes place. Imagine fans bringing chairs to sit outside the courthouse just to get a look at the giant coming and going. Anyone who believes this was a genuine case of rape may not be familiar with the word, &uot;trap.&uot; Trouble is the big fellas, no matter the sport, can be tempted every time they step out into the world. When they are &uot;straight&uot; as is usually the case, they can be tempted by temptresses who smell good, and can smell big money. Kobe was a dope and his millions will trickle down to lawyers, courts, and perhaps the young &uot;lady&uot; who blew the whistle for a foul. Twelve referees will decide who gets tossed out of the game.

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Alternative schools used to be called reform schools and they were often successful in reversing a kid’s direction. Now we have one over on Kenyon Road and some neighbors aren’t delighted. Not only do many think the neighborhood image is in jeopardy, there is the fear that &uot;patients&uot; might escape and cause harm before they are captured. Promoters insist it is best that bad hombres be culled from public schools so as not to deter those who choose to be educated. They don’t want promising kids to be affected by unholy antics. Right on, but what happens when the delinquent gets tossed in with many other baddies? Do they try to out-bad each other or can instructors really be tough enough to straighten the bent twigs? The Kenyon neighborhood has its doubts and rightfully so; only time can prove there won’t be a large failure rate.

OK, I admit I’m a senior citizen and life of the party until 8 p.m. I can open childproof caps with a hammer. True, I am awake many hours before my body allows me to get up and the reason I smile all the time is because I can’t hear a damn word you are saying. Like you I am very good at telling stories but I do it over and over and over. A night on the town? Hell, I’m ready to go home before I get where I am going. But I’m not grouchy, I just don’t like traffic, waiting, crowds, loud music, unruly brats, barking dogs, politicians, and a few other things I can’t remember right now. If you get old you’ll be just like me.

Robert Pocklington is a resident of Suffolk and a regular News-Herald columnist.