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And so 2013 comes to an end. One of the best years of my life… almost.

Just when you think everything is going in the right direction, life has the uncanny ability of clipping you on the back of your head and saying, “not so fast, bucko.” Yesterday, as the old year was winding down, Valarie and I were trying to decide what we were going to do to ring in the new year. We kept waffling on where we wanted to go, but we finally settled on going to the movies to see the Wolf of Wall Street. We were running a bit late, so we jumped into the car and took off, not noticing that there might have been something amiss. We traveled nearly a mile before I saw the piece of paper flapping under my windshield. I jumped out at the light and was shocked to discover a note informing me that my car had been hit and the driver must have taken off. On the other side of the page was a picture of the van along with his plates. I pulled over to a well-lit spot and sure enough, the passenger door had a nice big dent in it.

Not enough to give me a brain embolism, but more than enough to get my stomach churning. I don’t know how someone can hit your car and not take accountability for it, but it was nice to see that some citizen took the time to take a picture, go home, print it out and then place it on my car. I love the digital age.

I tucked the paper away and we continued on to the movie.

It sucked.

I love Scorcese. Everyone loves Marty. But this was a three hour waste of time. In truth, Dicaprio did a good job of portraying Jordan Belfort, because Belfort was an asshole, and Leo played it that way. Every other person in the movie was an asshole as well. Not one redeemable character in sight. The movie had some silly scenes that made it almost unbearable to watch, but overall, it was probably a pretty fair depiction of what went on during the 80’s on Wall Street. Coke, booze, pills, hookers, money, planes, cars. That world didn’t appeal to me then, and it doesn’t appeal to me now. I really don’t see why Marty would want to make this movie.

I’ve never really understood obscene greed. I understand drugs. Once you get a little taste, all you want is more. I understand the lust factor too. Sex is the best drug there is, you get a pass from me. But I’ve never understood why someone with 10 million would be so desperate to get 20 million, that they would risk life, limb, family and freedom. If a man is hungry and he steals a loaf of bread, fine. Why does someone who has 2 loaves of bread need to steal 4 more?

Now, don’t get me wrong, I would like nothing more than to sell 4 million books, buy a house in Malibu, jet over to Italy for a long weekend, and then head back to my condo on West Broadway, but I don’t need to screw over 100 people to do it.

Or do you? Maybe that’s the only way to get rich in this world; screw the next guy.

Anyway, I got up this morning and headed down to Coney Island with my friend Brian, to support some friends who were doing the polar bear swim. Basically, I held the towels. I’ve done the plunge with the Long Beach Polar Bears on Super Bowl Sunday before, and come next month I might do it again, but on this afternoon, it just wasn’t happening.

After the day was over, I decided to head over to the precinct to report the hit and run incident. I almost wish I hadn’t. I left there more aggravated then when I saw the dent. Basically, the plus-sized p.a. at the desk, the one who looked liked she ate too many cupcakes over the holidays, handed me a form the size of the Dead Sea Scrolls and told me to buzz off. I think I interrupted her coffee break or her nail painting. She didn’t look at the plates on my photo, she didn’t call over an actual police officer, she gave me the bums rush and sent me on my way. I’m supposed to fill out the form, mail it to Albany, wait 6 weeks, and then if nothing happens, wait 6 more.

In short, I got the umbrella.

Normally, I wouldn’t care, but the car is a lease and I’m not sure if I have to report it or get changed double. Should I have the dent fixed myself? Who knows. I’m sure I’ll figure it out, but in the back of my mind lurks the thought: I have this guy’s plate… I can track him down, slash his tires, piss in his gas tank and write GO YANKEES on his hood with transmission fluid.

Of course, I’ll get caught in the act and spend the weekend in central booking…

I’m way too old and soft for that.

So I close 2013 with a little aggravation and open 2014 with a little more. No big deal. Someone bought my book yesterday. That makes me happier than almost anything else. 2013 was a damm good year; sold a few books, met some new friends, went to some great places… I had a book signing, and 30 people came, I had another and got to see two cousins that I haven’t seen in years. That’s a home run in my scorecard.

I lived, laughed, loved and overall had a pretty good time. I’ll sign up for another year just like it.

Without the hit and run of course.

Thanks to all the people that supported me and this blog this year. Hoping your 2014 is as good as my 2013.

Happy New Year folks.