I know many of my female readers are eagerly waiting for Sophia to give me the final boot, so you could grab me as your own personal boy toy. Let me temper that enthusiasm with some reality. One of Sophia’s biggest complaints about me is that I can be a real nag. I have an open mind about most things, but when an action rubs me the wrong way, I get all moralistic and can’t keep my mouth shut. There are some things that I just HATE — like when someone uses an old “Handicapped Parking Card” to park more easily at the mall, or when anyone litters in public. I can go on for hours about how one napkin thrown on the ground can make a Native American stand by the freeway and cry.
I blame the New York public school system for making me into a nag. The teachers were the biggest nags on Earth. Even though “global warming” hadn’t hit it big yet, pollution was on every teacher’s agenda. They made us celebrate “Earth Day.” I don’t remember much geometry, but I do remember my social studies teacher forcing us to write to the Japanese Prime Minister to tell him to stop killing whales. Being a frequent “Citizen of the Month” at school, I ate this stuff up. I was going to change the world, even as a third grader. I scolded my mother about choosing unsafe for dolphins tuna fish. I warned my mother about the freon in the refrigerator. I still nag today about the “trans-fats” in the “low-fat” cookies she eats, which she thinks are healthy. She nags me. I nag her. That’s why we get along so well.
No one likes a nag, but nagging can be an effective tool in getting someone to change their ways (although it hasn’t been very successful with Sophia).
Maybe I need to talk about my nagging when I go to therapy. Who wants a man that nags? Why can’t I just leave people alone to make their own mistakes? I hate when people are annoying to me, asking me why I have an SUV or criticize me for my poor recycling of bottles.
When I was younger, my mother was a social smoker. She hardly smoked at all — maybe one or two cigarettes on the weekend with friends. I was so brainwashed by my anti-smoking teachers that I just nagged her into quitting. I was like Bart Simpson repeating a sentence over and over again until Homer gives in.
“Mom, you know those cigarettes can kill you? Right? Right? And if we breath it in with you, you are killing us, too. Right, right?”
I don’t think my mother touched a cigarette ever again once I got through with her.
I’m actually astounded that so many people still smoke after all these years of bad press and being ostracized by the general public. In LA, you can’t even smoke on the beach!
Every once in a while, I read about one of you smoking a cigarette, usually on the weekend in a bar. I try hard to restrain myself from lecturing you. I don’t want to come off as a humorless prig. My image is that of fun and exciting, not moralistic and dull. And after all, it is your life. But, you do realize, that the second-hand smoke goes into the blogosphere and affects us all? Right? Right?
Here is a photo of Sarah and her husband Pete. How cute they are! But —
I’m not going to say anything.
(is there anyone else I need to publicly nag?)