Accomplishments and Regrets

Accomplishments and Regrets

78: WHAT

WAS YOUR MOST HUMBLING MOMENT? This is an interesting question since I am aware that I am a dork and I have known this for years. So, when I do

something stupid, I am not at all surprised, because, I am a dork, what would people expect? I struggled to come up with an answer to this question,

because to say I have never been humbled sounds egotistical, but because I am aware of my fallibility, when I fail, I am not shocked, so… it is

hard to be humble. I would rather not list all of the stupid things I have done over my life, despite not being humbled by them. The only incident I can

think of is one time I was talking to my friend Jason. I was talking about how selfish I am and how "it is all about me," and he rejoined that

I was one of the most giving people he knew. I was really taken aback because that was not how I thought about myself. I like to think of myself being a

firm believer in enlightened self-interest. I also like people to do nice things for me. I hadn't realized how much I gave back to my friends. I

mean, I have always been proud of my friends and the fact that every friend I have ever had has become friends with my other friends. I have excellent

taste in friends. But, I was shocked that they got something out of being friends with me and that it wasn't just me taking from them.


WHAT ACTION(S) OR ACCOMPLISHMENT(S) IN YOUR LIFE ARE YOU PROUDEST OF? Feral Cat Management programs. As the Director of Volunteer Services at the Los

Angeles SPCA, I wrote their Feral Cat Management program. This program was very successful and reduced our cat population by 18% over a 5-year period.

In practical terms, it meant cat season went from a 5 – 6 month long affair (where litter after litter is brought into the shelter for euthanasia, to

about a 2 week period where we actually had too many cats, and during some months, actually had no cats to adopt in the shelter. All at a cost of only

$10,000/year to administrate. My management system and description of what and why was adopted by the California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA),

and eventually the American VMA. I have seen copies of my program put into practice all over the country and around the world. Every once in a while I

get sent a copy of a program by a friend, as they want to know if I think the program is operating ethically, and I always laugh because it is almost

always my exact program photocopied with a different logo on it. I am proud of this not only because it worked so well and was extremely cost effective,

but also because it is the one thing I have done that has reduce suffering for cats all over the world.


might seem strange, but I strive to live a life without regret, so I don't have many. People regret what they don't do, not what they do. I have

known this for years. The truth of this is that my greatest regret is that I went to a club in Los Angeles one time with some friends. I remember we

went to go see a band called Babushka. I think it was at the tick tock. Anyway, we got there and sat down at a long table and I sat next to a woman and

we immediately hit it off. It was like we were old friends. So immediate was our friendship that the guys I had come with couldn't understand why I

didn't introduce them to what was obviously a good friend of mine. The reason I didn't is because I was just getting to know her myself. At the

end of the evening, I wanted to get her phone number and keep in touch, but felt weird because I didn't know how to ask without it seeming like I

was hitting on her, which I wasn't because I am hopelessly heterosexual. Anyway, we didn't exchange numbers and I never saw her again. My

greatest regret is not just being forward and suggesting we keep in touch and become friends. I know I lost out on a good