In the social-service and medical worlds, everything is done in acronyms and initials.
Blood Pressure is BP; Substance Abuse is SA; Severe and Persistent Mental Illness is SPMI; Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder is ADHD (which can also have a lot of the symptoms of BRAT).
I have decided that rather than aging up to middle age, I am devolving into MA.
The symptoms of MA are rather varied. I'm not nearly as quick to get upset about little things, but I'll stay angry about an injustice twice as long.
I no longer want a Pop Tart and a cup of coffee in the car at the red light. I want something substantial for breakfast (preferably something that used to bleed).
I can purchase and lose 20 pair of bifocals, but I can tell you where every single pair of my earrings are located.
Comfort has taken a priority place in my life. Everything from automated e-bill pay, to having all vital phone numbers on speed dial to save time (and eyesight).
When I shop now, I pray I can find what I want online with a credit card, simply so I don't have to put up with crowds in malls (or fight with SUVs in the parking lot).
My taste in head-banger-speed-metal music hasn't changed, but my tolerance for talk radio has decreased to absolutely nil. I'm on hiatus with both of my favorite, local stations in the morning, because they have nimrods pontificating pointlessly that putrify the morning airwaves.
Commercials. Commercials are anathema to those of us with MA. There are two commercials that simply must be aimed above or below MA tolerance, because both of them irk me to the point that I grab the remote and assault the "mute" button.
One is a pizza commercial in which a medium pizza is repeatedly said to be only $5 bucks ... $5 bucks? Just $5 bucks ... that's right, $5 bucks, Over and Over and Over.
I can hear the sound in the depths of my mind as I slide two shells into the barrel and blow the television screen in half.
The other commercial gnat that annoys me to an incredible degree is the internet coverage commercials that are portrayed in the following way: This itty bitty thingie (say, a chip of ice) is local. This not-so-itty-bitty thingie (maybe a sno-cone) is Wi-Fi. And this massive thingie (a blizzard) is (insert PRODUCT name). That is OUR glorious gift to internet access.
Maybe, it is my MA kicking in, but I swear I cannot escape those two media inundations morning, noon, or night.
Deep sigh. Aden Hepburn has an Online Advertising Blog (www.adenhepburn.com) that predicts that more and more advertising budgets will move to online promotions. This is supposed to be a win-win, because, "They [advertisers] can track and report on performance on the fly with a smaller budget."
You know? All of us MA-types might actually stand a chance of enjoying the scenery, in that case. If online ads work the same way that FaceBook and Google operate, I'll be able to screen out all the stuff that sets my MA teeth on edge with just the click of a mouse!
And, maybe, we can go back to watching television programs, on TV.
Denese Rodgers is executive director of Connecting Henry, a social-services, networking, community organization in Henry County.