By Paula S. Robin
Half Past Later
Curmudgeonly was a hostile and manipulative character. I think it’s fair to say it’s never pleasant to be around him. He was hard-wired to avoid the emotions, not mindfully embrace them. Curmudgeonly’s feelings were extreme and quick and moved on swiftly, attaching to all those around him. To be honest, I felt a little bewildered when Curmudgeonly (“Mudge” for short) walked in. Everyone listen up. Mudge had to take a back seat to Midge, his wife. Midge was equally as bad-tempered and negative. It is hard to keep morale high or stay motivated when these two are lurking around—weaving in and out of every conversation with backhanded compliments.
Midge and Mudge, Mudge and Midge, what a cute pair, not! They wrote the book on the art of subtle, yet brutal, backhanded compliments. It was real artwork. Their negging, not to be confused with nagging, was on point. These two are as sharp, sharp as tacks, attacks. Mudge has a flirtatious way of undermining anyone’s confidence. Midge is famous for saying, “did I say that out loud?” Please, that was no slip of the tongue miss-missy-messy Midge. Make no mistake about it; these two are a part of the manipulation we all encounter. It can happen to anyone. Kids, don’t try this at home.
Where do they come from, and where do they go? This is not a question for cotton-eyed Joe. We need a professional’s opinion. They come from low self-esteem. They change where you live and can alter the way you live. Where do the two go? They seem to spiral into severe emotional, verbal, and physical abuse. Mudge and Midge want you to know, no matter who you are, or who’s doing the negging, it’s not their fault. Handle with caution, oh, and you have to accept it. Sarcastic tones, digs, put-downs and let downs, these are all disguised in pretty little tactics. Like cheap-ass valentines candy, dressed in the seductive red suede box, waiting for you to just eat them up.
It is not despite all good intentions, my peeps. They have no good intentions. Mudge and Midge should come with a warning label, a trigger warning, something like, “One word of warning: only use these two when you have to.” They belong in a glass case that says, “break in case of an emergency.”
Midge is all about appearance. The way she looks, the way she acts. By giving the impression that she is saying something nice, the sting of the insult hurts that much more. Mudge stands there with a smug look on his face, while whipping up and serving you like toast in a player, with some level of praise. What’s wrong with that? Here, you forgot the salty insult, on the side, of course.
Midge and Mudge, Mudge and Midge, they hate you the least, if it makes you feel any better. They have labeled you the low person on the totem pole. You are of little or no importance to them. When will you become irrelevant again? Check the confidence tank. Is it on, or close to E? I want to spend my time in this space sharing with you about quickly we can be derailed on our journey by our bad temper and negativity, Midge and Mudge. They are not merely hodgepodge. They are much more than a confused mixture of a couple of nuts. They are crusty, ill-tempered, and not well-mannered. Neither are we when we participate or indulge in them.
We can’t always change what happens to us. Sometimes, unfortunately, we can’t change what we have done to others or to ourselves. We can change our perspective. Unless we are talking about Mudge and Midge Curmudgeonly. They are exceedingly unpleasant, truly miserable folks. Yes, Mudge and Midge are eponyms from the very definition of Curmudgeonly. I didn’t create them. I only named them for entertainment’s sake. Charles Dickens introduced the character of Ebenezer Scrooge. Brilliant literature. I’m certainly not comparing my work to his. I didn’t even get the idea of Mudge and Midge from Mr. Dickens. It came to me after the fact.
I’m suggesting this: Mudge and Midge wouldn’t be a hoot to hang around. Maybe Midge would be in her hooters uniform. That’s another story, and it’s also an if. Suppose I drew her like Jessica Rabbit. Anyway, you know what I mean. Focus, please.
I was thinking of skinflint and Charles Dickens’ perfect illustration of Scrooges stinginess. Someone made me think of Midge looking like Jessica Rabbit in a hooters outfit. Only Midge is clever as a fox, and no one is writing about a skin flick here. I can’t write about this; it to similar to Charles Dickens’ idea. Nothing is new under the sun, so says scripture. We need to use our words with caution – and our thoughts. I have to keep my eyes on your mind all day, peeps. How did this start? Oh yes, Curmudgeonly, it’s not just about older people anymore. You have to be honest, well I have to be, I like this word. I like the way it sounds. It sounds like an edgy and cagey character. By definition, it’s a bad-tempered, difficult, cantankerous person. It’s never a good thing to become a Mudge or a Midge, not even for a smidge, because they smudge good attitudes. I’m not Dr. Seuss, but it kinda sounded like him. Kinda! Anyone up for a game of devil’s advocate? Midge, your hand went up quickly. You can serve your side first. You tell it like it is, nothing wrong with that. Well played, Midge. Mudge, let’s see how you handle the ball, it’s in your court. Mudge chooses the game bowling. He likes to bowl over the person he is talking to. Let’s go to commercial break.
Before this blog gets out of hand, and it certainly looks like overtime and a little overindulgence is at play. Let’s look at how easily lousy behavior can be disguised, twisted, and turned around on us. It’s only funny if you’re not the butt of the joke. Trust me, Mudge and Midge Curmudgeonly are hostile characters. I should know, I made them up to cover up my anger and frustration. I pull them out when I want to be passive-aggressive or just plain old aggressive. Security! I’m telling it like it is. It’s better for you to know where I am coming from – what I’m working out of. Sometimes it does take someone like me to point out your issues. I asked you to read it, not eat it. Don’t swallow it whole. Chew in it a bit. Let what I’m saying digest.
If you can identify, read this way, pretty woman, handsome young man, with precaution and intention. You have to pick your battles. Before you start a war, know the little battles count. They all lead up to the crowning. There will come a time when I can’t be bothering you about what I think you should do. After I write it and you read it, I hope we both take a minute to let it sink in. It’s not just the way I deliver it, it’s about how you’re hearing it and receiving it that will win the war—crowning you king or queen. Ruler of your own land. Emperor of your mind. Sanity, it’s what’s for dinner. Learn how to smooth out your own rough edges. If we don’t pull up the rug, from the corner of your mind, can you ever face the things you crammed in there? After all, you promised to look at it later. It’s half past later.
This reminds me of a “teacher” we had in high school…. Can you guess who ? Of course you can. Absolutely your best yet, love it!
A fascinating read that is definitely giving me a lot to chew on!