by Joyce Tremel
I couldn't narrow down what to write about this week, so this post is likely to make no sense whatsoever (the first person who says "what else is new?" gets a virtual smack upside the head). I thought of doing something on the gross injustice of the verdict yesterday in the civil trial of the two PA state troopers, but I'm too angry and would probably get myself in trouble. Then I considered writing about Cyril Wecht's trial, but that's turned out to be boring. Even the colorful Dr. Wecht can't liven that one up. I supposed I could write about work--it's been busy this week, but it's all dumb stuff. No big crimes to report on. So that was out.
I browsed the newspapers some more until I found the perfect topic: none other than my neighbor and yours, Fred Rogers. Why Mr. Rogers? you may ask.
Well, why not? I happen to love Mr. Rogers. And I met him once on an elevator when I worked at Allegheny General Hospital. I can tell you he was exactly the same in person as he was on television. Very soft spoken, deliberate, and kind.
Next week in Pittsburgh we're celebrating "Won't You Be My Neighbor Days." Fred Rogers would have been 80 years old on March 20th, so just about every venue in the city is celebrating. March 20th has been designated Sweater Day. Everyone everywhere is being asked to wear their favorite sweater that day.
Personally, I think there should be a 24 hour Mister Rogers channel. All Fred, all the time. The world would be a much better place. There would be no more fighting, no more wars, everyone would get along just like in the Neighborhood of Make Believe. (I know they didn't always get along, but by the end of the show everything was just peachy.) Who could go against the cool logic of King Friday the XIII, or the beauty of Queen Sarah, or the just darn cuteness of Daniel the Striped Tiger? Even the mail would be on time because of Speedy Delivery! And wouldn't you rather ride that red trolley instead of a Port Authority bus? Thought so. (But I could do without Lady Elaine. I always thought she was a little bit scary.)
For those of you who can't deal with all the sweetness and harmony of Fred, maybe you remember Mr. Robinson and his neighborhood. I don't know if it's true, but I read somewhere that Mr. Rogers liked this skit.
So next week, I want everyone to break out the cardigans and join me in a rousing chorus of "Won't You Be My Neighbor." Then ask yourself, WWFD?
You guessed it--What Would Fred Do?