Advertisement

Mike Gold's Blog

Left Coast/Right Coast: Rats

Rats are those nasty creatures that seem to pop up when you least want them. As rats have been here before humans by about 100 million years or so, one could argue they have as much right to be here as we do.

The expression “rats” generally means the same thing as “nuts” or “sh*t” or “damn.” It is a statement indicating disappointment or frustration at some daily event, which causes you to be somewhat stressed out.

Here I mean “rats” in the other way. That is those nasty creatures that seem to pop up when you least want them. As rats have been here before humans by about 100 million years or so, one could argue they have as much right to be here as we do. (You could say the same thing about cockroaches, beetles, dinosaurs and thousands of other species that pre-date humans).

For as long as humans lived on the Earth, one of the things they have worked diligently at is eliminating rats from where we live. And for as long as humans live on the Earth they will continue to try and rid their homes of these disgusting creatures.

Left Coast/Right Coast: How we celebrate a life and its passing.

A friend of mine passed away a few days ago. He was not a close personal friend – but someone with whom I had fairly regular dealings. I got to thinking about how we mourn. We all mourn in our own private ways.

A friend of mine passed away a few days ago. He was not a close personal friend – but someone with whom I had fairly regular dealings. It does not matter, he went at a too young age.

I got to thinking about how we mourn. We all mourn in our own private ways. Some of us can’t face this prospect (which faces us all) and don’t deal with it directly. Others jump in with both feet – offering help/support to friends and family. I like to think about two of my favorite writers/comedians, who have each produced what I consider an important work on this subject.

Left Coast/Right Coast: Going out of your way to help or, “What’s in it for me?”

As I was driving back to Mill Creek this morning, at the corner of 164th Street SE and Mill Creek Boulevard the car in front of me simply stopped in the middle of the intersection. Within a few seconds, three separate unrelated people rushed into the street behind the car and helped the driver push the disabled car into the gas station at that corner.

As I was driving back to Mill Creek this morning, at the corner of 164th Street SE and Mill Creek Boulevard the car in front of me simply stopped in the middle of the intersection. Within a few seconds, three separate unrelated people rushed into the street behind the car and helped the driver push the disabled car into the gas station at that corner. I started thinking back to what would happen in the Northeast (both in Boston and in New York) in a similar situation.

Left Coast/Right Coast: Tradition! (or is it just inertia?)

This column should is about the nature of East Coast vs. West Coast intellectual capital. Intellectual capital equates human resources and the thinking behind it.

This column should raise some questions to ponder about the very nature of East Coast vs. West Coast intellectual capital. By intellectual capital I mean the human resources available and the thinking behind it in both regions of the country.

New Englanders are inherently snobbish when it comes to the people in that region. I think it starts with Harvard and the over 100 other institutions of higher learning (both colleges/universities and private secondary schools) in the area. Their thinking is something like this, “We invented higher education.”

Left Coast/Right Coast - Is music different from east to west?

Okay, I’ll admit I am a child of the 60’s and the doo-wop era. What does that mean? Well, start with groups like Dion and the Belmonts and one of their classic hits.

Okay, I’ll admit I am a child of the 60’s and the doo-wop era. What does that mean? Well, start with groups like Dion and the Belmonts and one of their classic hits.

I Wonder Why (Dion and the Belmonts). Most of you Westerners would not know that the group was named for Belmont Avenue in The Bronx. Furthermore, you probably don’t have at your fingertips that The Bronx (one of the 5 boroughs of New York City) is the only borough properly referred to as “The Bronx” and not simply Bronx. Even the New York Yankees are called The Bronx Bombers.

Doo-Wop came out of early rock and roll (if you really want to date yourself, recall Alan Freed – an early impresario of rock and roll shows, some of which were held in Harlem at the famous Apollo Theatre). Freed pre-dated Dick Clark (if that’s possible – as I always thought Clark’s first “rock” show involved dinosaurs and Barney Rubble).

Left Cost/Right Coast: “Go West Young Man” or perception vs. reality

In 1850 Horace Greeley wrote, “Go West, young man, go West and grow up with the country.” How has his promise/vision turned out?

In 1850 Horace Greeley wrote, Go West, young man, go West and grow up with the country.

How has his promise/vision turned out? Well, one could argue he was actually trying to rid New York (he was the founder and publisher of the New York Tribune – one of the most influential newspapers of the 19th century) of all the undesirables by getting them to leave town.

In fact, they named Greeley Square in Manhattan after him. Perhaps he succeeded at what he was trying to do, get rid of all those Democrats – in favor of his staunch beliefs in both the Whig and Republican parties.

Left coast/right coast – The people you meet

East Coast Rule 1: Never trust anyone. When you grow up in New York City, you take certain platitudes for granted. First among those is, “Never trust anyone as you never know who they really are.”

As this column is named left coast/right coast, I thought it might be interesting to compare people and my impressions from both coasts:

East Coast Rule 1: Never trust anyone. When you grow up in New York City, you take certain platitudes for granted. First among those is, “Never trust anyone as you never know who they really are.”

Just think of Son of Sam. A mere postal worker who had a habit of sneaking up on parked cars and blowing the occupants away with a .44 caliber gun. To say Son of Sam had a personality disorder is sort of like saying it rains in Seattle. Really? What gave you the first clue?

Here is a sample of a letter Son of Sam wrote to famous New York Daily News Columnist Jimmy Breslin, “Hello from the Gutters of NYC which are filled with dog manure, vomit, stale wine, urine and blood.”

Now isn’t this just the kind of person you want to invite home for dinner? What personality disorder? Just a typical misunderstood New Yorker going about their daily business.

Left Coast/Right Coast - So many complaints, so little time

The other day as I stomped on the gas to “get through” a light turning red (I swear Judge, it was still yellow when I went through) I looked up and saw another of those horrible traffic cameras.

Highway 99 Encore: The other day as I stomped on the gas to “get through” a light turning red (I swear Judge, it was still yellow when I went through) I looked up and saw another of those horrible traffic cameras.

See, this is another example of bureaucracy run amok. The poor schmuck doesn’t stand a chance. The lights are timed so if you are dumb enough to attempt to run the light, the yellow signal is timed to be so short that unless you’re traveling at Mach 1 – you cannot make it through before red. Then that ticket shows up with your dumb face looking directly up at the camera – with your license plate displayed below (ask me how I know this).

If you are traveling at Mach 1 or above, you also get a camera ticket for speeding (again, ask me how I know this).

The only good thing here is that a camera ticket is not classified as a moving violation, so it does not go on your insurance and doesn’t increase your premium about 20% for three years (again, ask me how I know this).

Left Coast/Right Coast: Abbrev. (Abbreviations and other offensive intrusions in our lives)

HTHAY? (How the hell are you?) We live in a culture chock full of abbreviations. Sometimes it is impossible to actually understand what the other person is saying.

HTHAY? (How the hell are you?) We live in a culture chock full of abbreviations. Sometimes it is impossible to actually understand what the other person is saying. Example: I went AWOL because my POSSLQ was becoming a PITA. I went away without telling anyone – (absent without leave) because my cohabitator (person of the opposite sex sharing living quarters) had become difficult (a pain in the *ss).

Or I suspect the NSA, DCA, FBI, DOJ or CIA thinks I am an effin (f-king) terrorist because I wrote that the POTUS and FLOTUS (President of the United States, First Lady of the United States) were MIA (missing in action). Too bad as I’ve BTDT (been there done that) and that is a BFD (big freakin’ deal).

Left Coast/Right Coast – Why I love alligators and other animal adventures

I’ll admit I have a fondness for alligators. Why? Well let’s start with extinction and survival. Sixty five million years ago a large meteor hit the earth ending most life. But the alligators survived virtually intact.

Alligators: What’s the connection between alligators and the Pacific Northwest? Well, visitors all over the U.S. bring back baby alligators from trips South. They grow until they’re too big to keep at home. Some owners let them loose wherever they happen to live. New York City has an urban legend that suggests there are monster alligators loose in the sewer systems. Whenever someone’s dog or small child disappears, it is often blamed on these loose alligators.

Sometimes, the urban legend is true. (See next:) The Urban Legend is True. And although I am unaware of any alligators crawling out of Seattle sewers, it is possible. So watch yourself next time you hear a hissing sound coming from under your car.

I’ll admit I have a fondness for alligators. Why? Well let’s start with extinction and survival. Sixty five million years ago a large meteor hit the earth ending most life. But the alligators survived virtually intact. They have not changed in a couple hundred million years. Now some might suggest they have not “evolved." They still have a small apricot sized brain. But if you look up the dictionary definition of intelligence, you will read: “ability to adapt." So I argue alligators must be far more intelligent than we are.

Left Coast/Right Coast – All roads should head east

Okay, I admit it. People from the Pacific Northwest have managed to keep the region’s attractiveness a secret from the rest of the county.

Mike Gold writes for the News of Mill Creek on a regular basis. He is a retired entrepreneur and describes himself as a, “relatively recent transplant to the West Coast. I have lived (born and raised) in the Northeastern U.S. So these observations are based upon ‘living the dream’ in the Pacific Northwest.

Okay, I admit it. People from the Pacific Northwest have managed to keep the region’s attractiveness a secret from the rest of the county.

Our youngest son moved here with us when we first arrived. He constantly complained that the people were very parochial and it was hard for him to “break into” social groups. I thought about it and concluded - why share all the richness of the region with those who don’t deserve it? There are already enough folks here (and the traffic nightmares confirm it).

Left Coast/Right Coast – Public bureaucracies and the barf-bag

Okay, let me say right off, I don’t like bureaucracies. There is just an unnerving aura about them that makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Just entering any public office to do business starts my dry heaves. I always carry a barf bag with me.

Mike Gold writes for the News of Mill Creek on a regular basis. He is a retired entrepreneur and describes himself as a, “relatively recent transplant to the West Coast. I have lived (born and raised) in the Northeastern U.S. So these observations are based upon ‘living the dream’ in the Pacific Northwest.”

Okay, let me say right off, I don’t like bureaucracies. There is just an unnerving aura about them that makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Just entering any public office to do business starts my dry heaves. I always carry a barf bag with me. Why? Well when you enter their turf, you have surrendered any semblance of power and/or control you have over your life. I imagine it is not unlike your first week of basic training in the military when you are told over and over you are just a “puke,” that your life has no meaning and is worthless unless and until some public official (your drill sergeant) deems you are actually worthy.

Pages