Don't you just hate it when your own dog barks at you in the dark?
Don’t you just hate it when the neighbors you’ve known for 20 years won’t return your wave because they don’t recognize you in someone else’s car?
Don’t you hate it when they still won’t return your wave because they still don’t recognize you in your own car? Or, worse, when they recognize you in your car and still won’t return the wave?
Don’t you just hate it when the people who put all those balloons and birthday stuff all over the trees and signs to guide folks in never come back and take them down?
Don’t you just hate trying to get plumbers on the phone? Don’t you just hate getting chased out of crosswalks by cars? Don’t you hate it when another car coming from a side street kills itself to turn in ahead of you and then slows down to barely a crawl? Don’t you just hate it when that huge pickup truck coming the other way, barges into your lane to give themselves 5 feet on their side while pushing you into the gutter with 6 inches?
Don’t you just hate it when the gas company leaves those garishly colored florescent spray marks -- that last about 1,000 years -- all over your streets?
When the DPW is digging up the streets in front of your house but won’t even talk to you when you ask why? Don’t you just hate your tax bills going up and up and up, without even adding in the debt exclusion yet? Don’t you just hate it when a Gloucester cop yells louder than he has to because he’s a cop and you’re not?
Don’t you just hate it when morons don’t use their blinker when they turn left right across you? In front of you? Behind you? In the rotary? On the highway? Coming out of that side street?
Don’t you hate it when the UPS truck stops, blocks the entire lane, stacking up five cars to wait while he runs in to deliver? Don’t you just hate it when the local museum of historic preservation builds such an ugly industrial building, right out in plain sight, masquerading behind banners as the debutante it isn’t?
Don’t you hate dealing with computers, especially when they say your chosen password is invalid, even though you just chose it? And how about those doggie poop bags, dangling in the bushes? Don’t you just hate that?
Don’t you just hate it when out-of-town developers get judges to override our local zoning in order to squeeze as many boxes into a lot as the local law doesn’t allow? Why are they always from North Andover or Lynnfield but have to despoil Gloucester? Did they just run out of places to over-stuff back there? And why does every new house have to be so much bigger than very house around it? So hate-able . . .
Don’t you just hate being stuck at home all the time? And, oh yes, having to go back to your car again because you forgot to put on your mask?
But don’t you just love it when the tide is high? Don’t you just love Cape Ann’s breakfast places? And the bars too, when they come back. And the restaurants?
Don’t you just love that Gloucester’s soul has not been bankrupted even when its politics have been? Don’t you just love it when Gloucester seems so full of little kids?
And dogs. And walkers. And boats. And birds. And trees. And grandchildren. And great coffee. And don’t you just love its great, gooey burgers?
Don’t you love that it’s still not completely full of condo’s and still smells of fish and salt? Don’t you just love the Boulevard? And the Back Shore and our beaches? And even Rockport?
Don’t you love it on that first snowfall of the year? And the last? Don’t you love our freedom, our open space and our wonderful wooden houses? Our crazy winter swimmers? And won’t you just love it when Donald J. Trump is finally gone from the presidency of the United States of America?
That will, truly, be a day to love.
Gloucester resident Gordon Baird is an actor and musician, co-founder of Musician magazine and producer of “The Chicken Shack” community access TV show.