“Big Boy Pants?”

This was the question from late night genius Stephen Colbert to “Last Week Tonight’s” star John Oliver: “Are you wearing ‘big boy’ pants?…I’m wearing a suit.”

Colbert smiles wide and Oliver lifts up his leg to the camera to point out his “sweat pants” — so, no, he had succumbed to what everybody is doing these days as we shelter in place at home. (My neighbor tells me that sales of “tops” are up as more people try to look good/better on videoconference calls.)

As you can tell, I got a chuckle out of the question Colbert asked…specifically because it seemed so…childish. I cracked a smile and, these days, I need to do a lot of that.

Oh, try this one out for a laugh: Tom Hanks playing a dolt on SNL’s version of Jeopardy with Will Ferrell playing the straight-man Alex Trebeck. I laughed hard, reference “Catch These Men” category.

Laugh. Laugh more. Yes, the disease is serious but we humans aren’t all the time.

How do we talk to each other?

I posted this on nextdoor.com that 15,000 people in my local vicinity could see. I thought it was very courageous of me. It helped that I had had a couple of shots of Cazaderos tequila (zero calories according to my Carbs Manager mobile app). I got the bottle from the Sam’s Convenience Store on the corner of Clark and E Streets in Santa Rosa: I love the place! Yes, it has quite a diverse homeless clientele.

How do we talk to each other?

I had a small complaint about another human (who doesn’t live in the neighborhood) about his/her parking. A good part of the time, I endeavor to be compassionate, empathetic, kind, fair but….I’m a New York Jewish guy and, sometimes, my heritage gets to me. It’s very easy for this kind of guy (me) to become a righteous, vindictive asshole: it’s in my genes?

So, I wrote this letter to a guy who parked in front of my house and…prevented me from parking in front of my house…I put it on his windshield. Was that wrong?

It makes me realize, especially in these times of political polarization, how I don’t know how to talk to people “on the other side.” I don’t have the skills and I haven’t gone out on a mission with an intent to acquire them…I think I should work to learn how to talk to “them” because the future of humanity and the planet might depend on doing just that….

Here’s the letter: let me know what you think I could have done better. I haven’t yet heard back from him or her but I’m kind of hoping I do….I have this fantasy that we will become good friends.

Friday, November 29, 2019

Hi there fellow human,

Parking: it’s an art.

Two years ago when I first moved here, I got a note like this — handwritten and not so nice — because I wasn’t conscious about my parking on this street and I screwed things up for my neighbor across the street.  Yes, it wasn’t nearly as nice.  

See, when a car is parked is parked in the middle of the envelope in front of a house, it prevents another car from parking there.  There’s actually room for two cars in that space where you parked. I would have parked there, too,  but, instead, I’m risking it with my landlord by parking in the driveway. (I try not to do that too often; he gets quite irritated with me.)

I’m trying to be kind and hope you can see that.  I shy away from being an asshole even though I know very well how to be that guy: I’m a Jewish guy from New York…there you have it.

So, if you could be more conscious next time you park on this — or any other – street.  That would be great.  If you have any questions, talk to my lawyer Rudy Giulani…he knows what’s going on.


Thanks.  Have a good weekend.

George, trying not to be an asshole so let me know how I did

What I can do for someone who’s homeless

I had a relaxed day today: PG&E cut power in some areas so the pressure was off me to do electrical work.

I’m hoping that I can encourage others, even myself, to be inspired to do some small act to make a difference in the life of someone who is disadvantaged.

I went to ship some packages in Bennett Valley and, after completing that task, I decided, in my relaxed state, to address a woman and her two children (one in a stroller): “What do you need?” I wasn’t very eloquent or smooth. I had to prompt her and asked: “…a chicken…some other food?….) It took some courage for me to do that because I always fear these people thinking I’m going to feel guilty if I don’t offer SOME help.

When I asked the young girl (7?), she said she wanted some Cheerios. The mom chimed in and said something about milk and she motioned a gallon size jug.

My eloquent response: “OK.”

I went off to Safeway and did my shopping: I got her a turkey breast (Thanksgiving is right around the corner.); some bread; a gallon of whole milk (not 2%).

I checked myself out, with a slight smile. Put it all in a bag and walked over to her: “here’s what I got you….” She thanked me. God, it felt GOOD!

I took an action to alleviate someone else’s suffering. She still needed rent money but I didn’t address that….I guess that next I could get her name, open up an account for her and recruit folks to help her make her rent.