the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Wants to Be Congratulated for Picking Up a Can

When I sell a script or win a Nobel Prize, don’t congratulate me.  I don’t need your praise to have achieved these goals.  I would have done them anyway.   Besides, I will have just won the Nobel Prize!  What do I need YOU for?

When I succeed in something, I hope to be mocked.  Not hateful mocking, but amusing mocking.  I don’t want to get a big head.

Anyone just lose their job?  We should be praising YOU rather than someone who just landed a big deal.  We need to help you booster your confidence!  We have our priorites all wrong.

Today, I picked up a discarded Coke can that I found on the street and threw it into the trash can.  I would like to be congratulated on that action.   Is this why people believe in God?   So they feel rewarded for doing good?   Otherwise, why do it?   I’m iffy on the God thing, so I feel the urge to tell you instead.

Would anyone read a blog post about me picking up a can from the street?  Or does it seem like someone crying for attention?  And so what?  People are always blabbing on about stuff they are doing, parties they attended, or getting named as one of the Ten Best Blogger.  Why not tell you that I picked up a Coke can this morning and helped save the planet?

Honestly.  Which is a better and more impressive marketing line — Neilochka: One of the Ten Best Bloggers in the Universe or Neilochka: He picks up discarded cans!

Do you praise your child for helping the old woman across the street as much as winning the spelling bee?

Did anyone do anything today worthy of congratulations?


  1. wendy

    the other day, I was feeling lazy at the supermarket,and decided to off load some marinara sauce I decided not to get. I put it on the shelf of the wrong aisle. It was fresh, so it needed to be refrigerated. I got to the end of the aisle, turned around, got it, and put it back where it belonged.

    Not because I was afraid of getting caught..or thought I should be praised..but finally had a moment where I realized I can be the best I can be..or the worst.

    That only took 45 years.

  2. Roadchick

    Congrats on picking up the can & throwing it in the trash.

    Really, though, for the big congrats, you should’ve recycled it.


  3. Miss Grace


    I used a re-usable mug!

  4. What? You didn’t recycle? No congrats for you. 😉

  5. miss. chief

    in the city where i live there are little spots for cans on the edge of trash cans, so the homeless people don’t have to dig through the garbage cans
    you should have just left it on the road

  6. Amy @ Milk Breath & Margaritas

    I’m sick today and have done nothing noteworthy.

    I do not approve of litter however – it offends me – and I train my children that it is evil and must never be done.

  7. Peeved Michelle

    Seriously, don’t you have a gig as a green blogger? Recycle, blah, blah, blah.

  8. SciFi Dad

    I commented on a post about nothing.

  9. mamatulip

    I got out of bed this morning. Where’s my fucking congratulations?

  10. Headless Mom

    I didn’t punch someone who thoroughly deserved it.

    Does that count?

  11. Tuck

    I said – “Yes dear, you’re right dear”. I am a saint!!

  12. claire

    I got rid of a mouse that up and died in my driveway, and I kinda do want congratulations for it since I really didn’t want to deal with it.

  13. Twenty Four At Heart

    I took an unemployed friend out to lunch. But really, that was selfish because I love her and wanted her company. I looked at a lot of boobs on the Internet even though I’m a heterosexual woman and I was very judgmental about the funny looking ones. I guess that’s bad? I put our recycling out for pick-up instead of trashing it. I emailed an Internet friend and told him I miss his mindless drivel on Twitter. Hmmm … I guess I’m pretty pathetic. Thanks for that Neil.

  14. katie

    I called the diet coach who has been trying to reach me for four weeks.

  15. Caron

    Yesterday, I totally ignored my dirty dishes. Today, I briefly thought about washing them. Do I get any points for the thinking part?

  16. anymommy

    Nope. Not a damn thing.

  17. better safe than sorry

    i drove my neighbors kid to his soccer game tonight because his own parents can’t be bothered. something worthwhile for him, not so much congratulations for me though and definitely shame on his parents for not even bothering to care about their child.

  18. AnnieH(the other annie)

    My kids got bags of candy their first day of kindergarden for “not hitting anybody.” Is that crazy Roger Rabbit-eyed teacher up there with you?? You stay away from her. She used to tell the kids to look out the window for leprechauns–I think she was taking a nip, or twenty.

  19. Colleen - Mommy Always Wins

    I told my son not to pick his nose. Where does that rank?

  20. Annie

    I told someone I love them, other than that I did nothing worthy of praise. Funny post Neil, wish I had a witty comment like that other Annie :-).

  21. southernfemme

    Neil, you’re really getting weird. Hugs.

  22. Nina

    I think you know we would all make an enormous fuss over anything you do. Why? Because we love you.

  23. flutter

    congratulations on picking up the can. I would like to be congratulated for not handing a rude commentator her ass on my site today.

  24. John

    I added a Coke can to my recycling bag. I plan to add two more tonight. : )

  25. churchpunkmom

    i do actually praise my children just as heartily for being kind to each other as i do for how well they are learning. i want them to understand that intelligence and compassion are equally important.

  26. gorillabuns

    i woke up.

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