Mighty Life List
Jul 30 2002

Kindness of Strangers

My first article in a series on etiquette for the Morning News.

Jul 29 2002



Jul 29 2002


J: I’ve only ever gotten two tickets.
Me: Tell the speeding one.
J: It was bad.
Me: What were you doing?
J: I was going 92 in a 55.
R: Jesus.
J: And I talked back to the cop.
Me: Why?
J: He was just going on and on about how I could’ve killed someone. You know?
R: What did you say?
J: I said, “Just give me the ticket.”
Me: Whoa.
J: I was in a hurry.
Me: Where were you going?
J: To yoga.

Jul 25 2002

Overheard: America’s Future

Scenario: Two recent high school graduates run into each other on the bus.

Characters: One tall guy with dirty hair, one short stout guy with a buzz cut.

Hey man!


How you doin’?

Good, man.

I haven’t seen you since like, since like graduation.


What are you doin’ now?

You know, same ol’.

Yeah, but what are you up to?

Same ol’.

But what is same ol’?




That’s cool.

‘Member the cafeteria?

Yeah man.

When I was working at the cafeteria, I used to hella hustle.

That was hella tight.

Yeah. Now that I’m a grown up, I don’t steal no more.

‘Member the Arizonas?

Yeah! I used to be like, one in both my pockets, one up my arm. I’d be like, want one? Two bucks!

You made hella cash.

That was hella tight.


Remember the mango ones?

Yeah! Those were good.


Frosh and sophomore years were cool. Then junior and senior year sucked.

Hella sucked.

I like the real world though.

Not me. I like high school because of all the girls. I was in ROTC. ‘Member Ingrid?

Yeah. But I like the real world better.

(tension mounting) Yeah. I like high school.


‘Member Anthony?

Ten years from now, I’m all, “Hey Anthony!” Here’s Anthony, “Who are you?”

(laughing) Yeah.

Do you ever talk to Anthony?

(coldly) I got no reason to talk to Anthony.

Yeah. He was talkin’ shit about you.

Fuck that.

Yeah. Fuck that too.

‘Member when I went in his house and took his wrestling thing?

(laughing) He was hella pissed.

Took his dog too. Starving ass dog.

That was his mom’s dog, right?

He was like, “What were you doing in my house?” And I’m like, “What? I practically live here! I’m practically your cousin!”

He was like all, “I’m gonna sue!”

(laughing) Yeah.

I had a friend who was a security guard and he got all hassled by his boss. He shoulda sued.

Like, sexual harassment?

No, just like he was a dick you know? So he quit.

Don’t quit! Sue.

This is America, man. It’s like capital of lawsuits.

Yeah like, touch my leg.

(Touches friend’s leg)

Now I could hella sue you for that. I would sue and get like $100. But I’d have to pay my lawyers too.


It’s not worth it, I guess.


Jul 23 2002

Good Day

A big group of seniors got on the bus, I think they were going down to visit Fisherman’s Wharf. About fifteen commuters quietly got up from their seats and went to stand in the back.

Jul 22 2002

I Really, Really Do

This is a link to a kitty-cat singing a love song with a gigantic bouncing-heart backdrop. You must click on it.


Wrote a review of K-19: The Widowmaker, which I highly recommend if you enjoy young, muscular men in tight quarters. Hooray for war movies.

Jul 18 2002

Sarah Hepola

Go read her July 13 post about her dad at sarahheppola.com. Then read the rest of her site. Sarah is extra keen. Here’s an excerpt:

So when I get to Michigan, I said, tearing some bread, I thought I might spend some time in Detroit. Sometimes, when I am talking in a restaurant, I like to tear things. A paper napkin. The sweaty label of a beer bottle. I tear these things into pieces and put them in a pile of little white wads on the table. When there is nothing left to tear and wad, I arrange the pile in different shapes. A circle. A square. An S, for Sarah. Tonight, I am breaking up pieces of crust in front of me. If you listen closely, you can hear the tiny clicks of my fingernail on the plate. So anyway, I thought we might talk a little bit about Detroit

You should talk to your aunt. My Dad tears off some bread.

Okay, I say (click click), but I thought maybe you and I could talk.

Talk to your aunt.

The clicks become louder and more frequent. Did you not grow up in Detroit? I ask.

He waves his hand. Eh. And then he laughs. It’s such a mystery to me, my father’s laugh. I mean, she’s the one who lives there and

I’ll call my aunt. Later, I will wonder why I cant stop crying about this, but for now, I brush my hands off and put them in my lap.

The waiter appears. Would you like something to drink? he asks.

We answer at once: Yes.


Went to a They Might Be Giants concert last night at the Fillmore. Everyone bounced madly and sang along. THESUNISAMASSOFINCANDESCENTGAS.

My life is officially a Passat commercial.