by Gabe Berman – the author of Live Like a Fruit Fly

Archive for the category “bullying”

Almost Killed, But Kindness

Three boys around fourteen years old, skate-rat punks who looked like the demon’s helpers in Kevin Smith’s Dogma, walked in as I placed down my coffee, home brought walnuts, iPad and hot-off-the-presses new book on a table.

Oblivious to any social code and no regard for the obviousness of how I could stomp him like an empty soda can, the lanky one, the apparent leader, approached me as I was about to sit, proceeded to drop his book bag by my feet, and then absconded with the other chair at my table.

Without asking for permission. No eye contact. No nothing.

Instantaneously I puffed up and said, “Hey man, how do you know I don’t need that?”

Now please believe me when I say that I didn’t act aggressively because I felt disrespected. Or slighted. Or like I needed to prove something to myself or to him. I couldn’t have cared less what this little lord of the flies thought of me.

It’s just that I was in the right place at the right time to be of service.


Yes, service.

I guarantee this wasn’t the first time he thought he was too cool for school. And I guarantee that one day he’s going to, knowingly or not, push the wrong person just a bit too far. And his dumb friends won’t be there to have his back. So, just maybe, he’ll think twice next time.

Now, to review, I asked, “Hey man, how do you I don’t need that?”

He smiled a cocky smile and looked over to his friends.

They lifted their eyes to me and simultaneously chose to bury their pimpled faces into their phones.

His smile slipped off his lips.

He said, “Oh. I’m sorry,” and started dragging the chair back my way.

But I said gently, “No man, don’t sweat it. I don’t need it. Keep it. But you know, just be cool.”

He, now looking like a little boy, smiled and thanked me.

My dad would have loved this story.

He would have really loved it.

– – – – –

(this is a new chapter from another new book I’m finally returning to)

get your hands on my books here:


You’re Gorgeous! (And ugly too)

A trifecta of high school chicks are sitting in front of me in Starbucks right now.

They’re cute and they know it. Confident as a mafia hit squad. iPhones out, ripped jeans, and a blatant disregard for calories.

If I were in high school, or even in college, I’d be scared shitless from these three.


But, I’m a goddamn Jedi now. And their bitch faces melted like candles thrown into a volcano when I got up to take a leak and said, “Hey, can you guys do me a favor and kick the crap out of anyone who tries to touch my iPad?”

Everyone else walking by gets a solid dose of the world famous Long Island Stink-Eye.

They look at their clothes, whisper their reviews, and smirk in disgust.

And I’m almost as guilty.

When I was a kid, I’d also cut on people behind their backs to my friends. And as an adult, my mind judges everyone and everything. My thoughts are on autopilot unless I’m already abiding in a transcendental space.

And this is bad.

Very, very bad.

Because kids, all over the world, grow up thinking it’s okay to fuck over people to get ahead. Greed is the golden rule. The environment? Slaughterhouses? That’s someone else’s problem.

Sounds like I’m stretching here?

Well, I’m not. Go look out the window. Open a history book. Switch on TV. Look inside your own head and heart. We’ve made a living hell for ourselves.

All is not lost however.

Everything can be cured in just a few generations.

What’s the cure?


“We are all one. Everyone you see, is actually you. They look different, but it’s you.”

This needs to be taught along with the abc’s. Along with the times tables. With science, history religion and art.

It will become as natural as learning to keep little hands away from a hot stove.

The survival of our species depends on this. Just this.

And it can start with you.


The separation you feel between you and others is an illusion.

According to mystics and now physics, there’s only one of us.

Thank you for reading,

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