Category Archives: Annoying Burghers

Oh, Lukey

This marks the SIXTH time in my blogging “career” that I’ve had to write a post entitled “Oh, Lukey.”

1. The first happened in 2007 when it was revealed that Lukey, or “myself and other individuals,” were kind of sort of arrested at PNC Park in 2005.

2. The second happened in 2007 when Lukey apparently hired Maya Angelou to write his budget address.

3. The third was in 2008 when Lukey was asked about Martin Luther King Jr. and he went all PoliticoBot 2000. 

4. The fourth quite possibly hinted at early tension in the Ravenstahl marriage, now that I’m looking back on it.

5. And the last and fifth time I did it, it was when Lukey publicly stated that he didn’t know who should pay for him(self) (hee!) to attend the Stanley Cup game in Detroit, to which I responded:

Dear Lukey,

If you would just hire PittGirl to be your Chief of That’s Church you would never have the entire city pointing at you and laughing at your inability to know the correct answer to this question.

No, instead, you would have walked into my plush corner office (corner table at Dunkin Donuts) and asked ME that question and I would have said, “Lukey, do what every person on the face of the earth knows to do. USE YOUR OWN DAMN MONEY!!!”

And as he was walking away from me, disappointed in my answer, I’d be calling after him, “That’s church, baby!  Don’t be a hater!”

And here we are today in 2013, in this my 3,601st post on my blog and I’m using it to say … “Oh, Lukey!”

Go read this over at the Early Returns blog at the Post-Gazette.

In a nutshell, Saleem Ghubril has apparently been moved to the top of Luke Ravenstahl’s “Lame Duck Shit List” because he has turned on Saleem in epically public fashion.

Saleem is the head of the Pittsburgh Promise, if you don’t know. And if you don’t know that …

tumblr_mboq1m3MlS1qgxs0l

 

So when Saleem wrote a letter to the editor, like Freddie Fu did (DON’T GET ME STARTED ON THAT BULLSHIT), Luke or someone using his official Facebook page commented to say this:

“Keep in mind as you read this … UPMC basically pays his salary! By the way … What is your salary Saleem?”

Well, I can tell you that. In 2011, it was $161,000 in total compensation. Boom! goes the Form 990.

Lukey’s valid point is that of course Saleem is going to come to UPMC’s defense in the case of Lukey v. UPMC. His job depends on it kind of.

But Lukey wasn’t done:

By the way Saleem…. Your a director (first and foremost) of an organization that would not exist without the vision and fortitude of Mark Roosevelt and myself. Just to remind u. Funny how quickly folks forget.

Well, he just said “Mark Roosevelt and myself” and removed all doubt as to whether or not this is Lukey. OF COURSE IT’S LUKEY. Who the hell else do you know uses the word “myself” so liberally?

Do I love it that Lukey seriously, honestly, 100% does not have a single f–k left to give? YES! I DO! I LOVE IT LIKE NUTELLA! I WANT TO HUG HIS INABILITY TO GIVE A RAT’S ASS ANYMORE!

Do I think this was probably not the most professional way to call out Saleem? Oh, hell yes.

If Lukey had come to me in my Office of That’s Church in Dunkin’ Donuts, this is what would have happened:

Lukey: “Your Highness of Churchitude, I’m thinking of using Facebook to stick it to Saleem Gubril. Good idea or bad? Say ‘good.'”

Me: “First, is my city debit card linked to the Nate Harper fiasco? Because if so, I’d like you to take it, puke on it, and feed it to a pigeon because I have put a SHIT TON of cappuccinos on this thing.

Second, I advise against this. You may have valid points, but going about it in this manner will seem childish and very high school-y in an OMG-CINDY-SPARKLES-HAD-THE-NERVE-TO-TEXT-MY-BOYFRIEND- SO-NOW-I’M-GOING-TO-START-A-CINDY-SPARKLES-IS-A-HUGE-WHORE-FACEBOOK-GROUP kind of way. My advice? Have someone with decent writing skillz (ahem, ahem) compose a letter to the editor or an op-ed piece for you in which you lay out the arguments as to why Saleem likely has ulterior motives and why you feel you can lay claim to starting the Promise, and why you feel going after UPMC is the right thing for Pittsburgh. And Lukey, if we’re being honest, the Promise is more Roosevelt’s than yours anyways. I know you don’t want to hear that, but this IS the Office of That’s Church.”

Lukey: “Ugh. FINE! I’m leaving. And no, your card is not tied to the Nate Harper account. [crosses fingers behind back]”

Me: “Good.”

Lukey: [starts to walk away]

Me: “Oh, and Lukey?”

Lukey: [turns] “Yeah?”

Me: “FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, IF YOU DO DECIDE TO DO THIS VIA FACEBOOK, DO NOT USE  ‘U’ WHEN YOU MEAN ‘YOU,’ BRITNEY SPEARS. AND USE THE EFFING CORRECT FORM OF ‘YOUR!'”

Lukey: [storms away]

Me: “That’s church, baby! Don’t be a hater!”

Fin.

(h/t @thebitchdesk on Twitter)





… and hell froze over.

It used to be there was only one thing in the world that would drive me to shoot tequila at noon on a weekday — being ten or more days past my column due date for Pittsburgh Magazine. I write better when I’ve got a bit of tequila in me.

Today, I learned there is one other thing that will have me frantically opening the liquor cabinet and taking a swig straight from the tequila bottle: Luke Ravenstahl announcing he’s formally and legally challenging UPMC’s questionable non-profit status.

What?!

That’s right. Today at a press conference, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced that the city would be mounting a legal challenge to UPMC’s claim that they are operating as a non-profit, exempt from taxes, including millions of dollars in property taxes that they should have started paying years ago when it became very clear they were as close to a nonprofit as Enron ever was.

From Chris Potter’s tweets, you can get an idea of what Luke said:

Chris Potter  CPotterPgh  on Twitter

 

Now, I really want you to understand, Pittsburgh, why I believe this matters. Why it’s important. What doesn’t matter and why. And why the hell Luke suddenly found his inner Chuck Norris and went [roundhouse kick] on the most powerful entity in all of Pittsburgh.

1. Since a few months after he took the mayorship, Luke Ravenstahl has hung his legacy hat on the coatrack of The Pittsburgh Promise. Sure the pieces of that machine were moving long before Luke ever took office, but he got the credit for a landmark program that was designed to bring more families to the city. Luke’s partner in that legacy-building program has long been UPMC — the largest donor to the fund. Luke and UPMC have been like THIS since then. We cannot know what arrangements were in place. We cannot know if UPMC bought Luke in the vein of, “We’ll fund the Promise if you leave us alone on the tax issue.” We can have our suspicions, as I have mine, but what matters is Luke and UPMC were definitely french-kissing and heavy-petting if they weren’t fully in bed together. And that meant UPMC was protected, despite it being very very obvious to every person in the city that UPMC was no longer a nonprofit. What nonprofit do you know of in America that spent $800,000 to put their name on the side of a skyscraper? What nonprofit do you know of that earned annually half a billion dollars in “excess margin” or … well … PROFIT?

2. It matters that UPMC hasn’t been paying property taxes and has been permitted to take advantage of hundreds of millions of dollars in tax breaks, because by not doing so, they’ve been robbing the city and the Pittsburgh Public Schools of precious, greatly needed income.

3. It matters that UPMC, despite incredible revenues and the claim of being a charity, has only given 2% of revenues to helping the poor and has been notoriously stingy in paying employees. In fact, instead of increasing wages, they had the nerve to open a FOOD BANK for employees.

4. It matters that Luke Ravenstahl has, for all intents and purposes, stopped giving a single shit. Out from under the oppressive thumb of the powers that held his reelection chances in their hands, out from under UPMC and the unions and the good ole boys, Lukey has decided to finally be a real mayor. He has decided that The Pittsburgh Promise won’t be his legacy; taking on King Kong will. Going down in a blaze of glory and not caring one flip who he takes with him. This is a man who has been joined at the hip to UPMC for years and now he’s gone Brutus on them in spectacular, mouth-gaping “Et tu?” fashion. He’s biting the hand that probably fed him caviar, and shooting the engine of the jet that probably flew him privately to New Orleans. I can honestly say that if you told me last month he would do this, I would have laughed in your face and then told you to shut your whore mouth.  It is stunning.

5. It doesn’t matter what his motive is. It really honestly doesn’t. Is he doing it to grasp at the fleeting thread of a lasting legacy other than “questionable ethics?” Possibly. Is he doing it to drag our attention away from the FBI investigation into the slush fund? Maybe. Is he doing too little, too late? Probably. Has he been promised a high-paying job at Highmark? We’ll find out soon enough.

But it doesn’t matter. The WHY of it doesn’t matter. What matters is he has legally set in motion something that should have been done long ago. He manned up and formally brought to the forefront what has been merely talked about casually before. He has shined a light on the elephant in the previously dark room, acknowledged it, pointed right at it and said, “I’m not going to pretend it’s not there anymore. It’s a freaking elephant. It’s there. Look at it. It stinks.” He has started something big.

6. It doesn’t matter if you’re a UPMC employee who loves your job. Good! It doesn’t matter if I’ve spent three years raising money for the sick kids at Children’s Hospital, a UPMC hospital. Those kids still need those games and those distractions. Your job is important to you. UPMC is made up of people. It’s not all evil. But their insistence on maintaining nonprofit status when they clearly are not a nonprofit is HURTING the city. It’s hurting the schools. It’s got to be fixed.

7. It matters how UPMC will retaliate. Keep an eye on it. Will they threaten layoffs or wage freezes? Will they threaten to pull their funding from The Pittsburgh Promise? Will they take a look at their billions of dollars in revenue and hundreds of millions of dollars in profits and take their lumps knowing they got away with it for a long time? Let’s see if pettiness rears its ugly head here. Let’s see how they interpret the word “charity.”

8. It matters what happens now. Luke has until the end of his term to see this thing through, at which time it becomes the responsibility of the new mayor. Now is the time for the candidates to let us know where they stand on this. Do they agree? Can they be bought? Will they be bought? Will they stand up and say, “I WILL NOT BE BOUGHT BY UPMC. I will see this thing through. I will make it right, because it’s not about what’s best for me and my political aspirations; it’s about what’s best for Pittsburgh’s bottom line?” Make a note as to which candidates make that promise, and then hold them to it.

Because when it all is said and done, that’s what’s going to matter the most — not that it started, but that it was finished.

Buckle up, Pittsburgh.

It’s about to get good.





Slushiegate 101: The CliffsNotes Version

It’s a mess.

A big mess.

Grant Street is in turmoil, painted with muted shades of Detroit in a color Sherwin Williams would call Grey Ethics or Shady Shenanigans.

If you haven’t been following the story, and I know many of you are just now paying attention as it’s just getting good, let’s quickly recap what has happened and why it matters and what questions are left to be answered. This is what I understand to be true and to be the timeline. I am not a journalist. REPEAT. I AM NOT A JOURNALIST. I have never claimed to be one and I will never become one. This is simply what I understand to be true based on media reports. If I’ve got a detail wrong, let me know in the comments. Don’t freak out. Chillax.

Here we go. There will be a quiz.

— In 2010 Mayor Ravenstahl came under fire for the exorbitant cost of his security detail. $200,000 in overtime in two years alone, not to mention salaries, expenses, etc. No mayor before him had ever managed to rack up such costs. It was exposed. I wrote about it in an open letter to Lukey as I often did.  In response to the scandal, I understand the mayor shrunk his security team a bit.

— In the past week, the FBI raided the special events office of the Pittsburgh Police. This is the office that handles, assigns, and bills for side work of members of the police force. When you go to a Pitt game or whatnot and you see officers? Side work. They get paid for that outside of their regular police wages. There is and has been a whole lot of controversy surrounding the special events office. That’s nothing new.

— The purpose of the raid was an investigation into the discovery that Nate Harper, police chief, or his office, had opened an account at a nonprofit police credit union and into this account, tens of thousands of dollars were being deposited — money that should have been deposited into one of the official, valid, legal city accounts. For instance, the force invoiced Pitt for side work to the tune of several thousand dollars. The payment check was then deposited into this off-the-books account no one knew about. That’s not good. That’s basically theft. Nate Harper closed the account a few weeks ago.

— Unknown figures in the city had debit cards linked to this account. Expenditures were for things like airfare, hotels, restaurant bills in places like DC and Denver and locally as well. At first, we were not told who had those debit cards.

— Luke, who originally stood by Nate Harper’s side, met with the FBI this week and on that very day, based on information he learned, asked for Chief Harper’s resignation. That was a good thing. That made me happy. Luke took new information and used it to make a new decision. A+!

— Luke stated he was not a target of the investigation, that he had no prior knowledge of the account or who had debit cards associated with the illegal slush fund. Slush fund. That’s what it was.

— Yesterday it was revealed by the Post-Gazette that it was the mayor’s bodyguards who had debit cards for the illegal slush fund account. [thud] I honestly didn’t see that coming. I’m so naive. Luke claimed he had no idea that they had the cards or that they were linked to the illegal account.

Today, it was revealed by the Post-Gazette, that a former member of Luke’s security detail claimed and would take a lie detector test to prove that Luke did indeed know of the account and the cards, and that their purpose was to avoid the scrutiny on the spending that would surely come down on Luke’s security detail in light of how much he came under fire for it in 2010. Luke says these are all lies. Then apparently someone, possibly on Grant Street, turned the Post-Gazette on to the accuser’s ex-girlfriend to lay waste to any claim the accuser might have to being an honest individual. And she did a really good job.

Who knows who to believe?

It’s a mess.

Thoughts:

1. We’ve taken a ding here. And if you love Pittsburgh, no matter how much you may personally dislike or distrust the mayor, you’ve got to want these allegations against him to be untrue. You’ve got to not want Pittsburgh’s name hanging out with Detroit’s and other cities we see as corrupt. Not that politics, and city politics, aren’t already by nature corrupt as we have only an inkling of what really goes on, but such a public smear on the name of the Office of Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh is a terrible thing. Want not.

2. If you love Pittsburgh, if the allegations turn out to be true, you’ve got to take that smear and be thankful for it because it will mean something harmful to our city has come to an end. It will be a small scar that we can learn from, rather than an internal injury we aren’t aware of until it grew out of control and became too late to repair without permanent damage.

3. You’ve got to ask yourself the questions.

Is it possible the mayor really didn’t know? If not, who would put illegal debit cards into the hands of his security detail knowing very well the resulting scandal could deeply risk the mayor’s position? If he didn’t know, is someone out to get him? To bring him down? Is he just a puppet taking a fall because someone decided to cut the strings? Very John Grisham-y.

Is Michael Lamb really in a position to criticize at this point? He’s running for mayor and he’s also the current lead overseer of all things financial when it comes to the management of Pittsburgh’s money.  My advice to the mayoral candidates is to lay off a bit. We are well aware of what this could mean for Mayor Luke without it being shoved in our faces all “NEENER NEENER NEENER!” Here’s your comment, “I love Pittsburgh, and for Pittsburgh’s sake, I hope these allegations against the mayor are false. I’d prefer to win the office of the mayor standing on my good name and my strong platform and ethics, rather than on the crumbling remains of Luke Ravenstahl’s administration.”

Is Nate Harper the fall guy? What benefit at all did he really derive from the illegal slush fund? I couldn’t think of one. Can you?

It’s a mess. And it’s going to get messier because this isn’t a city investigation capable of being swept quietly away; it’s the FBI and we are just at the beginning of this bumpy road.

One thing is certain … the mayoral debate on March 17 is going to ROCK.

I cannot freaking wait for the verbal sparring. I bet it gets so great at one point that the moderator involuntarily goes all…

snap





“And he saw the boob and his eyes did rot out of his skull.”

This is a boob.

Mt. Lebanon library says partially nude woman in photo exhibit breaks rules   Pittsburgh Post Gazette

Look at it.

It’s a boob.

It has a nipple.

Because it is a boob.

It serves to permit the female human to provide natural sustenance to her baby.

It was a gift from God. Or an accident, depending on your view.

It is a boob.

You might have one or two.

Your wife might.

YO’ MAMA SURE DID.

It is a boob.

Unless you are an administrator at the Mt. Lebanon Public Library, where this particular boob hangs, because then it’s not a boob; it’s a porn-adjacent image that will turn the minds of our young children to filth — rotting, stinking, gutter-dwelling filth.

“She said the problem with the photo of the breast was that it was across from [Mellon] middle school,” he said, “and the kids coming in after school come into the library and might joke about the picture.”

They might … joke about it?

Dear God, no.

Young boys and girls might see this painted boob and … giggle?!

The terrorists have won. Where is our God?

Dear Mt. Lebanon Public Library et al:

Before I launch into this, please be reminded that I am a pilgrim. The daughter of a minister. My children, at my choosing, are sheltered. My son does not walk in the door to find his copy of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition waiting for him. My daughter thinks that the worst word you can ever utter is stupid; a close second is dumb. If she hears you say the word hate, she will audibly gasp at your nerve. My TV is password protected. Get it? Me = pilgrim.

That said, this pilgrim is telling you to GET A GRIP.

It’s a bare breast. It’s actually not even a REAL bare breast. It is a photograph of a painted breast. The breast is not being fondled. The breast is not being suckled by a man. The breast is not being touched by the hand of God reaching down from the clouds to give it a sacrilegious tweak.

It is just a breast. The breast abides.

I hate to be the one to tell you this, but, brace yourself. [Inhale] there are boobs all over the ceiling of the Byham.

Byham Theater

Shall we shun our children from the culture and arts they could experience within the theater for fear they may look at them? Stare at them? GIGGLE AT THEM!?!

I took my son to the Byham. He was eight and he saw those boobs and as they caught his eye and realization dawned in his little ecstatic brain, he made a face that said, “BOOBS! OH EM GEE! THERE ARE BOOBS IN HERE. Be cool. Be cool.” It was awesome and hysterical and at no point in time did I consider telling the Byham to get those dirty, mind-putrefying, innocence-polluting images off of their walls.

We live in a world where 30-year-old men still giggle at the word “duty.” OF COURSE THE KIDS ARE GOING TO GIGGLE AT THE BOOB! It’s a boob! In the library! It’s the next best thing to that National Geographic edition your mom threw away on account of all the bellybutton-grazing boobs.

Hell, I’m a girl and I still remember seeing those brown boobs with my sisters all, “OH EM GEE. IT’S A BOOB! IN THE MAGAZINE! SEVERAL SAGGY BOOBS! Look how saggy they are. Tee-hee. Here comes mom! Flip to the page with the volcanoes. Hey, Mom! We’re just sitting here looking at volcanoes. No boobies for us to see here! Just volcanoes and shit.”

I managed to turn out okay, and I promise you this … your Mt. Lebanon children will still be the wonderful, promise-filled, Whitney Houston-beloved future of America, even if they see a painted boob prior to turning 18.

And now, so you realize how ridiculous you are, here are some tweets for you to read on this very subject:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amen and [BEWBS!]

You’re the next Annoying Burghers and your crowns are in the mail, and by “crowns” I mean me, standing on your doorstep, flashing my pilgrim boobs.

Somewhere, Benjamin Franklin is saying to himself, “Pilgrim Boobs would make a great band name.”





Fed up.

It all started over the summer as I crossed 7th Street near Penn Avenue. It was evening and the walk signal was lit.

As I stepped onto the curb on the other side of the street, a BMW with a man driving and a woman in the passenger seat prepared to make a turn from Penn onto 7th, but first there were four women in the crosswalk, talking and laughing and walking at a normal speed. They had the walk sign. They were walking. They weren’t dawdling or lumbering or otherwise attempting to take their time. As they cleared the street and stepped, laughing, onto the curb, the woman in the BMW lowered her window. She was a classy looking woman in her 40s. Short blonde hair. Business suit. Her husband/significant other was in a suit. They looked like they could be your bosses. As the car rounded the corner, the “classy” woman stuck her head out the window and angrily shouted to the group of women, “Do you bitches think you could move any fucking slower?!?!”

I was stunned. The girls were stunned. They looked at me, stunned. I looked at them, stunned.  And we walked our separate ways, just stunned like we lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals or ran out of Nutella.  I wondered what great thing the woman had planned to do with the five seconds she lost waiting for the pedestrians to cross the street. Cure cancer? Write a novel? Punch puppies? Pull the stick out of her butt? Puke up the piss that someone put in her Cheerios?

I shrugged it off.

Then last night I took my mother to see War Horse at the Benedum (Oh. Em. Gee!). We entered a lot not far from the theater and when I circled around a bend I found a Mercedes, lights on, running, sitting right in the thruway that allows cars to circle to the other side of the lot. It was clearly marked “No Parking” and there were lines that indicated he shouldn’t park there, so I was confused as to why he had chosen to stop there, completely blocking traffic. I sighed and put the car in reverse to back up. But now there was a car behind me waiting to make the bend as well. I moved forward again and pulled up next to the running Mercedes, with its lights on. The man behind the wheel was on his cell. He was in his late forties and wearing a business suit. I gestured to get his attention. He looked over at me and I smiled and motioned for him to move forward. He scowled and made the “BACK UP” gesture and looked away.

I looked behind me. Now there were two cars waiting to make that bend.

I sighed and tooted my horn to get his attention.

He looked at me again and once again made the “BACK UP” gesture, not realizing I couldn’t back up. I was stuck where I was.

He went back to his phone conversation. All I needed him to do was move up. His car was already running. There were several visibly open parking spaces on the other side of the lot that he could have moved his car into. But he wouldn’t acknowledge me, ignoring my waving hands trying to get his attention.

I tooted my horn with a short spurt again and lowered the passenger side window where my mother was seated and motioned for him to do the same so that I could explain the situation to him. I wasn’t angry. I was calm. My face was calm. I figured once I explained the situation to him, he would probably feel bad about it and move.

He looked at me, but he didn’t lower his window.

Instead he made a “FUCK YOU” face and he flipped me off with great gusto — holding the finger there for a solid, and — I’m sure to him — gloriously satisfying five seconds.

I was stunned. My mother was stunned.

I took a deep breath to calm my nerves and I got out of my car and walked up to his window muttering out loud, “What’s he gonna do? Shoot me?” I was going to explain to him what was going on and ask him to just move his car out of the thruway. I figured he was going to feel really badly about giving me the finger. But he didn’t give me a chance, because as soon as he lowered his window he went off on me, still on his phone, allowing whoever he was talking to to hear. “WHAT IS YOUR FUCKING PROBLEM?! THIS IS MY SPACE. I HAVE BEEN PARKED HERE FOR AN HOUR. THIS IS MY SPACE. GET ANOTHER SPACE. THIS IS MY SPACE.”

“Sir? You’re parked in the thruway. We can’t get through.”

“DID YOU NOT HEAR ME?! JUST BACK THE FUCK UP.”

“I couldn’t back up. There were three cars behind me.”

“WELL I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO TELL YOU! I’M NOT MOVING! SO BACK UP!”

And then the rage boiled up in me. I had it. I couldn’t take his rudeness one more second and he refused to simply move his car up so that other cars could access the spaces on the other side of the lot.

I flipped out.

“YOU KNOW WHAT?! I SIMPLY WAS TRYING TO TELL YOU YOU’RE BLOCKING OUR WAY. YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO FLIP ME OFF! HAVE SOME FUCKING MANNERS; THIS IS PITTSBURGH!”

He looked at me, stunned, and shrank back slightly. He raised his window back up and returned to his phone conversation, still not moving his car.

I returned to my car, and by now the other cars had given up and one-by-one backed up to go to another part of the lot. I did the same. After parking the car, we got out to begin walking toward the Benedum, and the Mercedes, at that moment, exited the lot.

He wasn’t staying there. His car was running because he was getting ready to leave. And he couldn’t be bothered to get out of the thruway for the people stuck behind him.

I needed wine.

I was fed up.

But it’s not just these run-ins with absolutely maddeningly rude people that has me fed up.

There’s the biker who had his throat slashed.

The teacher who had his face punched in for no discernable reason other than he was there and he had a face and his attacker was “having a bad day.”

And now this.

Pittsburgh police are investigating after a man was assaulted on the South Side early Sunday morning.

Sgt. William Gorman in the bureau’s Zone 2 station said Dave Whaley, a local musician, was crossing at 20th and Sarah streets when a Ford Mustang went through a traffic control signal and almost hit him.

After Mr. Whaley shouted for the vehicle to slow down, Sgt. Gorman said, the car stopped and a male about 6 feet tall, and more than 200 pounds, got out of the vehicle and hit Mr. Whaley, knocking him out.

“Sounds like one punch and he fell face first to the ground,” Sgt. Gorman said.

Pittsburgh, this is not us. We are not the rude assholes who angrily punch our way through life. We are not the jerks who can’t be bothered to put others before ourselves on occasion. We are not the jagoffs who trample on anyone who gets in our path to self-satisfaction.

We are the neighbors in the neighborhoods.

And I don’t even need to tell you what that means because deep down  you know damn well what that means because it is an inherent truth you’ve got lodged in your heart and you will never be rid of it no matter how many people you flip off.

Was I a good neighbor when I lost my shit on that man? No. I wasn’t. I get that. It’s easy to lose your cool. But I’m going to do better next time. And honestly, I’m kinda proud that I didn’t punch his face in with one glorious jab.

It’s nearing the holidays and I’m fed up with these stories and the interactions in my own life. Stop the road rage. Remain calm. Give the pedestrians the right of way. Watch for bicyclists. Hold the door. Hold the elevator. Let others merge. Don’t let your kids grow up to be the kind of people who punch faces in for no reason.

If you know who the Mustang-driving jagoff is who punched Mr. Whaley in the face, turn him in. 

Of course the Karma Boomerang always evens things out in the end, but there’s nothing wrong with giving it a helping hand.

Let’s all just chill out a little bit and get back to being the good people we were raised to be.

The kind of people about whom Mister Rogers would say, “I like you.

You’re a good neighbor.”

And if you REALLY get angry and feel the need to punch a face, can I suggest this one?

He is just BEGGING for it.