Health Alert: COSD Epidemic

Do you have chronic COSD?  It’s an epidemic that has swept the country in recent years and remains uncontrolled – but not uncontrollable.

CrisisThe Latest (Absurd) Manifestation

I read the latest manifestation of this epidemic just yesterday.

A university (theoretically an institution of higher learning) decided to stop using the term “Holiday Parties,” which was supposed to have been a more politically correct substitution for the previously outlawed term “Christmas Parties.”

Upon further reflection the university apparently concluded that even the seemingly innocuous word “holiday” is potentially offensive to some segment of our population.

The thinking (I use the term loosely) is that the word “holiday” might offend people who do not celebrate a holiday in December.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of years of tradition from various cultures be damned, we certainly wouldn’t want to offend these unidentified and apparently hyper-sensitive souls.

So, the new term on that campus for parties occurring in the month of December apparently will be “End of Semester Parties.”

(As a quick aside, remind me again why we are even having a party if there is no holiday to celebrate.)

Whatever!  Apparently you can only have a holiday if everyone on earth agrees for it to be a holiday and promises not to be offended by its celebration.

Which leads us back to COSD . . .

Pharmaceutical companies are fond of coming up with 3 and 4-letter acronyms to identify the many diseases and conditions for which they offer profitable prescription “solutions.”

Conditions like ADHD, COPD, BPH, GERD, IBD, OCD. The list is seemingly endless, so I thought I’d add yet another one.

Here’s Goes . . .

I suggest COSD as the newest addition to the list, because it is a condition which has swept the country and reached epidemic proportions.

Uncharacteristically, the pharmaceutical companies have yet to make any effort to capitalize on this opportunity.

Although you may not recognize the acronym, this is a condition you are encountering every day of your life either in person or through the media.

What Is COSD?

COSD stands for Chip On Shoulder Disease.

Even though you may not be medically trained, you should have no difficulty diagnosing the condition and recognizing when someone (you or another) is afflicted.

Here’s the textbook definition courtesy of the Cambridge Dictionary:

“to seem angry all the time because you think you have been treated unfairly.”

To be technically accurate, it probably should be CCOSD or Chronic Chip On Shoulder Disease, because once contracted it seems to persist, not unlike toenail fungus.

If you are uncertain whether a person has contracted this annoying condition, there are two tell-tale symptoms of COSD that are dead giveaways:

  • Frequent use of the word “offended” (which can also be an indication of another underlying condition – thin skin)
  • Being regularly “outraged” (especially by things that don’t warrant that level of emotional involvement)

People suffering from COSD seem to be addicted to episodes of offense and outrage in the same way in which alcoholics are addicted to having the next drink.

Is There Hope For a Cure?

Are the poor souls who have contracted COSD doomed to live out their lives in a perpetual state of offense and outrage, or is there hope for a cure?

Actually, there is a surprisingly simple, all natural, organic cure for this illness, and it doesn’t even require the use of pharmaceuticals.

Keeping in mind that I am not a physician and am not licensed to write prescriptions or treat diseases, I’m going to stick my neck out and suggest a cure that will give instant relief to these long-sufferers.  Here it is:


That’s right.  To cure oneself of this condition all that is required is to stop reacting (or should I say, “overreacting”) to perceived affronts from other people.

Those with COSD would be well-advised to take note of and accept the fact that the world can be an unfriendly place.

Most of the world’s occupants are not spending a significant portion of their time worrying about how their conduct might affect the happiness of a thin-skinned COSD sufferer.

Expecting them to do so is unlikely to improve one’s state of earthly bliss.

Further, among the world’s inhabitants is an abundant supply of idiots, morons and obnoxious human beings.

I probably unwittingly just caused episodes of COSD among a large group of idiots, morons and obnoxious human beings. 

My only hope for not being called out on that is that those people probably don’t wish to self-identify as idiots, morons or obnoxious.

Anyway, any attempt to educate those folks as to the error of their ways probably qualifies one for admittance into the club for which rehabilitation is sought, to-wit:  the club consisting of idiots, morons and obnoxious human beings.

If you choose (and it is a choice) to allow those that you regard as idiots, morons and obnoxious human beings to control your own state of being, then you are destined to remain an angry and generally unhappy person for the remainder of your life.

Assuming you don’t belong to the group under discussion, why would you choose that path for yourself?

It is a much simpler solution to control your own thinking than it is to attempt to adjust the thinking of the  innumerable people both capable and willing to cause you offense and outrage.

In other words, respecting other people’s “right to be wrong” under your personal view of the world will result in a happier existence for you than being offended and outraged by every person with whom you disagree.

But, alas, I am but a humble UpGrading Senior.  Why should you take advice from me?

Short answer:  you shouldn’t.

Well then, so as not to have completely wasted your time, I’ll leave you with the more time-tested and reliable thoughts of people with far more “street cred” than I have when it comes to life coaching.

From Grade School

“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

He that respects himself is safe from others; he wears a coat of mail that none can pierce.”

Norman Vincent Peale

Change your thoughts and you change your world.”

 The Buddha

Rule your mind, or it will rule you.”

William James

By changing the internal state of mind, people can change the outer aspects of their lives.”

Gerald Jampolsky

Peace of mind comes from not wanting to change others.

Lao Tzu

Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power.”

Carlos Castaneda

The trick is in what one emphasizes. We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves happy.  The amount of work is the same.”

Wayne Dyer

You cannot always control what goes on outside, but you can always control what goes on inside.”


The first and best victory is to conquer self.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nothing can bring you peace, but yourself.”

Jacob M. Braude

Consider how hard it is to change yourself, and you’ll understand what little chance you have in trying to change others.”

His Holiness, The Dalai Lama

When you think everything is someone else’s fault, you will suffer a lot.  When you realize that everything springs from yourself, you will learn both peace and joy.”

Peace and joy to all you UpGraded Seniors on Christmas Day, 2016.

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