The Frog.

I may be crazy but I know that I read somewhere that if you place a frog in hot frying pan, he’s going to jump out. However, if you put a frog in a cold pan and then heat it up slowly, the frog will never jump out but instead he’ll just sit there and burn to death, content all along his journey to delicacy.

I think that is exactly what is happening in the United States today. As Americans we were very content in the “cold pan” of yesteryear and for the past several years the heat has steadily been increased. We are eventually going to burn to death without even realizing what’s happening to us. I am applying this metaphor to countless topics. For example, on my way home at lunch I noticed that the price of gas jumped six cents between 7:30 a.m. and 12 noon. A gallon of unleaded is now $4.259 at the corner store. It was a year ago that I was outraged at $2.399 a gallon. Doesn’t anyone care? Why are people not outraged? I know folks that are miffed, but where is the outrage?

People think nothing of standing line at an airport for three hours as your bags are scanned, your illegal shaving cream is confiscated and the fear of God is instilled in you as you board an airplane to your favorite destination. It’s all in the name of security, you know. Be afraid. Be very afraid. That’s been the theme of the 21st century. “Be afraid”. The Flying J still boasts a threat level of orange. Please.

And while I’m at it, why in the hell should I pay extra to bring my luggage along on a vacation? They don’t want us to bring our clothes, they’ve designed xrays that strip us of our clothes yet the rent-a-secure-feeling personnel balk every time I suggest I just go through security naked. Do you want clothes or not? Just follow the lead of the gas companies and raise the fares for everyone. “You’ll have to pay extra for your luggage.” Stupid.

You need a passport to cross into Canada. We need a fence along the Mexican border. What happened to “tear down that wall?” What has Canada done? More importantly, why are people not questioning things? Why are tomatoes all of a sudden the forbidden fruit (or vegetable, I can never remember)? What happened to growing your own tomatoes? Hell, I can grow tomatoes in a 5 gallon pail on the back porch and know that they’re safe from pesticides and god knows what else. And why do we accept high-fructose syrup in “all natural” tea (and yes, I’m firmly entrenched in the “New Coke/Coke Classic” conspiracy theory from the 1980s). Why do people think that Splenda is splendid? The stuff was rushed to market. It’s unnatural. In the 1970s it was all about the saccharin. And today people are literally dumping scoops of Splenda into their favorite dish. I know I eat a lot of crap but I still go out of my way to avoid chemistry when I can. Up until a couple of months ago I was an avid diet pop drinker. That was until I discovered it had many of the same ingredients as rat poison.

Personally I think the United States was headed toward insanity in 2000 and my suspicions were confirmed when Bush Lite was re-elected in 2004. It’s a slippery slope we are headed down. Something has got to give, and when it does, it’s not going to be pretty. When does this madness stop? When will the pan get too hot?