I have come to the conclusion that there is nothing you can count on anymore.
You can't count on the weather. Well, maybe you never really could, but as long as I have lived here you could pretty much count on the fact that there would be snow in winter and it would be cold and summer would be warm. It might be wet, but it would still be warm. Thanks to climate change things have gone haywire. Snow and cold is something with which we all can deal, mountains of snow and cold so frigid that it freezes your eyebrows off when you walk out the door is a bit much, and suddenly cold days in summer is just not right. I like to be able to count on the seasonal weather being pretty much what I expect, not something out of a science fiction novel.
You used to be able to count on your car, but forget that. They are all plastic now and will fold up like a Japanese fan if you so much as breath on them too hard. There are so many goo-gaas and nonsense on cars nowadays that when something goes wrong it could be one of a hundred stupid little electronic sensors that no one can figure out. You can't work on your car easily anymore. It used to be that if something went wrong there was a limited number of things it could be. Now, you need a fancy machine and a degree in nuclear physics to nail down why your car is making that weird noise or some ridiculous light is flashing on you. I replaced an alternator once. It was hardly rocket science and the alternator was right where I could find in in plain view. Now, you practically have to dismantle your entire engine to figure out where it is located, much less replace it. And forget about buying a care with a lifespan longer than about 2 years. Despite the fact that automobiles have become mind-boggling expensive, they have become some sort of obscene throw away item.
A really odd thing you can't count on is any size of clothing or shoes to fit you just because it is the size you think you always wear. If you wear a size 8 dress it is no guarantee that any size 8 dress is going to fit you. Likewise with shoes. There is this bizarre fluctuation in sizes based on some mythical unit of measurement that must exist only in the minds of the people who are churning out cheap clothing at a ridiculous rate. It is also true that if you were to spend $1000 on a dress you would find that the smaller sizes are bigger than the same size in a $50 dress. Evidently, the people who make expensive clothes are using an entirely different kind of tape measure than those making cheap clothes. Either that, or it is simply in their best interest to convince rich people that they wear a smaller size than the rest of us poor losers.
Forget about counting on people being courteous or polite in any given situation. Courtesy and manners seem to have gone the way of neckties and nylons. No one seems to want to be seen in them anymore. This is just a manifestation of the modern notion that any kind of self-control or restraint is an unnecessary waste of time. Better to let it all hang out and annoy everyone in the universe by airing all your dirty laundry and throwing hissy-fits so that the entire world can witness it. If anyone happens to miss your unrestrained performance you can always post a film of it on YouTube and annoy everyone over and over again in perpetuity.
You can't count anymore on kids being pleased by simple things at Christmas or on birthdays. They all feel that they must have, and are entitled to, phenomenally expensive items that involve either complex electronics or are part of the wardrobe of people who make obscene amounts of money doing entirely useless things. These days no one can possibly manage without the right sports shoes or most current electronic gadget and be expected to show their faces in school. The shame is unbearable.
Politicians used to be lying, prevaricating, sneaky, greed-driven megalomaniacs who are only truly interested in self-seeking ambition, power, and money that can be obtained through ruthless manipulation of their position. Wait a minute...I guess there is something we can still count on after all.