Old Dogs

MY HERO


thumbing
through the paper
first thing this morning
finding the usual
callous collection
of crimes
indignations
and atrocities
against humanity

even the classifieds
and product advertisements
take on an apocalyptical
appearance of failure
doom
and death

my only
pleasant diversions
are simple crossword puzzle
to get the grammatical
center of my brain
cranked into gear
and a few
of the funnies
which most of the time
are fairly ordinary
but every so often
surprise me
with twisted outlooks
appealing even to my
apocryphal taste

my usual favorite
not for its insight
or hints of intellect
but for its
atavistic appeal
in these sensitive times
of political
ethical
and moral
correctness
would have to be
Andy Capp

an out of work
insufferable alcoholic
who lends no assistance
to the working wife
who supports him

he's
a disagreeable sort
who only finds amusement
in chasing young women
quaffing copious amounts of ale
and occasionally playing
a menacing match
of football

I don't understand
how he's survived
the years

I never
liked the comic strip
when I was young
since
I could not yet relate
to his situation

now
the anachronistic
nature of the character
is more
than clear to me
and I can appreciate
the subtleties
of his
plight

of course
it could just be
that it's painfully close
to my own present
condition

although
I've quit drinking
try to cook and clean
as much as possible
and generally
get along with people
my
jobless state
seems an embarrassment
to friends
family
and acquaintances

oh well
as long as Andy
appears in the paper
I have
a worst case scenario
to hold in comparison

if
he disappears
I'll just have to face
the comic proportions
of my own
laughable
life