Best Grumpy Old Man - 2001
Well, here we are, six months after the merger of the Chronicle and Hearst-owned Examiner. The two decks have been shuffled, and who should emerge as the ace columnist but Rob "Man With an Opinion" Morse. Apparently, Chron management feels this horseshoe-jawed Mill Valley resident should be the voice of the new paper, allowing Rob to dig deeper than ever into his cache of one-liners and shoot-from-the-hip takes on the issues of the day. Normally, he's just skippable, but every once in a while we come across a line that makes us wonder if Rob hasn't been around a little too long. For example: Looking for insight on the implosion of the new dot-conomy? Rob's got it: "What do you expect would happen to a company with the name Yahoo?" (Ah.) How about a terrifying account of an aging suburbanite in the big city? "Just as I was about to step into the intersection, a large adult on a skateboard flew in front of me." (That ... punk!) Can we cue the clichéd cheap shot against the Ammiano-led Board of Supervisors? "Surely [Ammiano] jests when he complains that film crews in City Hall interfere with the serious business of government. You know, like passing resolutions to protect the endangered hermaphroditic salamanders of the rain forest." And what about vegans? "Don't even get me started about vegans." Dogs will pee marbles before this guy could ever replace Herb Caen, but he might already be the next Archie Bunker.