Copyright Victoria Elizabeth 2004.

-- Where oh where have the mugwumps gone? --

If you think we're living in some "tough tiddy times", you could be right.

After all, when the makers of "Wonderbread" and "Twinkies" have just declared bankcruptcy, it makes all the wafflers, whifflers, and wunderkins of the world a tad nervous.

Not to be discouraged, it's time to look on the bright side of things. After all, the arrival of mad cow disease just means there's a lot more opportunity to find the new love of your life in the organic veggie department at your local super-duper market. And, if that doesn't work, try hanging out in the tool section of your nearby big box home renovation store. That's where you're bound to bump into all the do-it-yourself pennypinchers who just adore swapping tall tales about their latest extreme-makeovers.

Anyway, where was I? Yes, the mugwumps, well they're an endangered species.

It seems that the world is only looking for cowboys these days. And, not just any cowboy will do thank you. Only those with a pronounced Texas drawl, an oil well on the back nine, and a long blunderbuss that will blast the heck out of varmints digging holes in well-manicured fairways, need apply.

Mugwumps, (formerly known as "great chiefs"), appear to have lost their pre-eminent position in pecking order of life. Fallen on hard times, they've become 'middle of the road' blokes with their mug on one side of a white picket fence and their wump on the other.

So, if you see a long forlorn face with flat feet, looking for a place to hang his deep-musing cap, don't annoy him by calling him an "ambivalent aardvark", a "doubting doormat" or a "vacillating vagrant". Mugwumps are sensitive souls who dearly love their uncomplicated independence. Oh, and if you're looking for someone to kick butts or kiss babies, try a high-achievement hoodwinker or a controversial contrarian, mugwumps are not interested.

Do not however mistake their calm demeanor for compliance. They just like keeping to themselves. Though not hermits or recluses, they do enjoy their own space to ruminate about what makes the world go round not to mention what makes people tick.

Clearly, the world sorely needs a few more mugwumps to remind us of the need for less "wrangling" and more "winsome" occasions to celebrate life in the slow lane.

So, if you run across a mugwump in your city or neighborhood, just smile and inquire about the health of the heffalumps, who makes the best bubble bath, and where's the best place to see shooting stars. They dearly love a good chinwag, so don't disappoint them!

And, don't forget to take time out and participate in the festivities of "International Mugwump Appreciation Day" -- any day of the year will do just fine!

About the Author

Victoria Elizabeth enjoys musing about Life, the Universe, and Everything in between through the pages of her blog aptly entitled, "The Quipping Queen", (www.quippingqueen.blogspot.com).