here’s a tip for lyft that uber would never mimic

poor lyft, stuck in a race for the bottom as uber continually makes the ridesharing market unsustainable and unprofitable

im sure lyft doesnt want to be giving away rides just to match uber’s craziness, but do you really want to be known as the 2nd most expensive rideshare company?

for a while lyft could differentiate itself from uber, among drivers, because lyft was the only one that allowed tipping, and even put it in the app.

but now that uber – once their founder was forced out of the company – has tipping, lyft no longer has that big advantage as being known as the company who gives a shit about its drivers.

so heres my idea: introduce Pre-Tipping

Install a pre-ride tip button in the app that cannot be revoked and the driver sees before he accepts the ride. this will

  • encourage drivers to get to the pickup spot faster
  • make the driver happier during the trip
  • inspire a good vibe in the car where now the pax can ask for a lot more. Aux cable? Fine.

drivers’ attitude and alertness can change with as little as $2 because this does not eliminate the post-ride tip.

if the passenger was going to tip anyway, then do it all upfront. make a friend. be a hero. and guess what, the driver is gonna feel like he sorta owes you when you tip upfront. that is the best time to tip! it will inspire better service and deliver a more enjoyable experience.

and if Lyft really wants to market it right, they would call it a Stoke.

Lyft: where you can Stoke your driver even before you meet.

i was in the worst mood today

which is weird cuz i never get moody.

was it the rain?

i love the rain?

i could easily live up north in constant rain

galoshes and mud boots,

overcoats and hats.

is it my lack of exercise?

they say that does something to your attitude

and i dont doubt it.

i walked up two flights of stairs last week and i was a wreck.

been watching all these movies,

georgia rule, less than zero, the neon demon.

so many.

jerry lewis.

just watched the doc about the fyre fest that hulu made.

some people are just total dicks.

i dont ever wanna be a total dick.

saw Free Solo

in school they taught us the secret to writing a good story

introduce a totally lovable character, then fuck their lives over and see what happens. if they pull it off, great. if they die, then thats a tragedy. either is fine.

either is fine.

so here they make us fall in love with this totally unique person. he happens to be a mountain climber.

and the thing he loves to do the most is climb without ropes.

one false move and he dies.

at the academy you will meet some people who are obsessed with watching movies. one of those people worked on the same floor as me.

and i noticed that he was going to see this movie again because he loved it

and he was seeing it in IMAX, because it’s made by National Geographic

because mountain climbing is beautiful, apparently

and even though i think this movie would be emotional and beautiful and terrifying no matter where you see it

im so glad i saw it on imax.

for 2018 movies theres two movies ive given an A+ to:

isle of dogs
and now
free solo

its like deja dont

sometimes i get these random flashbacks. not memory. vibe.

it will race me back decades to when i was sharing a bedroom, imagine that, with a guy when i was in junior college.

and in one sense it reminds me how far ive come (i now share a room with a girl, imagine that) but how almost exactly the same i am.

back then he had this drawer full of cassettes that he had made of dozens of albums. every doors record. every stones record. all the classics. all right in that drawer.

somehow i started dating a girl who wore red lipstick and used perfume. she was 21. i was 19. she made a big deal about our age gap.

one day we were making out to frank sinatra on the couch. the roommate was out. later in my diary i would rate it the second best make out session of my life. after a while we stopped and she said she had to drive back down to signal hill where she lived with her parents.

it’s a long drive so i said ok, later.

the next day she called and said she wanted to break up with me. i was all, but but

she was like, you are such a child.

i was all, i had frank sinatra on!

she said, you didn’t ask me to make love to you.

as stated, i was 18. untouched if you catch the drift. but my midwest upbringing had made that option… unthinkable. i literally hadnt thought it would be possible. this girl was amazing. i was happy to kiss her.

she said, i cant have a boyfriend i cant have sex with. and hung up.

i wore that diary out that night, i’ll tell ya.

it started

the first time we kissed was at a stop light at wilshire and bundy. i was driving us in my cadillac and out of the corner of my eye i could see her applying her lipstick

very slowly.

she said, oh man this lipstick tastes so good

we stopped at the stop light

she lunged at me and kissed me

doesn’t it?

when did people start being afraid of what they write

so many are so fearless about so much but it sure seems like writers are so afraid, but why

is it because our imaginations run and run and can think about all the possibilities – with special emphasis on the negative outcomes.

but they dont happen.

for years before i worked at the Times i wondered, what if they read this and think im insane and dont hire me? but not only didn’t “they” read it, they couldnta cared less. they barely read LAist which was 100x more popular

and wild. and fun. and at times embarrassing.

all the things you should be afraid of showing a prospective employer. but that was the thing we talked about the most.

finally got some sleep last night. the issue with this secret project is you can do it all day and all night and one thing just leads to another

its never ending. and fascinating.

i want a tommys burger now.

today we went to a fancy mansion

some say it’s the largest home in all of beverly hills. some say it has 54 rooms.

i say, thats a lot of rooms for a single family with five kids in the late 1920s.

it was super cool. we were on a special visit. the people gave us an amazing tour that included the secret bowling alley and hidden bar.

the grounds are used for weddings a lot.

amber does this funny thing where she says i dont want to get married but if i did i would want to do it… and invite…. and honeymoon in….

so yesterday i told her the story of mick and jerry and how happy they were when they were not married and how they broke up almost as soon as they got hitched and i showed her pictures and i thought i had convinced her

until we visited the largest home in beverly hills and the gardens where even famous people have been married in. with its sweeping views of LA.

and i whispered, never forget mick and jerry

and she said, never forget john and yoko

and i whispered, that was his second marriage…

dear nephew, after that devastating bears loss

dear tyler,

what a game that was. what a beautiful and terrible game.

nobody will tell you this because nobody is like your uncle tony. but heres the secret about being a bears fan, that’s different than being a cub fan.

and i can say this because ive been a huge fan of both teams for a very long time. how long? let me just say: i watched bears game on a NEW black & white tv that your grandma bought.

i bet youve never even seen a black n white tv. and for that alone you should be happy.

anyways heres the secret about the bears: they are going to break your heart more often and more painfully than the Cubs ever will.

the thing about the Cubs is they’re the lovable losers. even this season they lost and we loved them. but the Bears, for some reason, always gets our hopes up. they always have players who are so outstanding that you think, oh shit they can and SHOULD win this game.

and they get you right up to the end and they stab you in the heart.

then they get your heart and put it in a pie and put the pie in a box of money, the biggest box youve ever seen, and they give that box of money to jackasses like jay cutler or kickers named cody.

so heres what you need to do. you need to use that feeling inside of you and put it to good use.

i dont know about you, but heres how im feeling: like fucking shit.

but fret not, because shit is in this world for a good reason. you think im kidding but im not. ask your grandma. shit is extremely valuable for growing the most beautiful things in the world. green grass and pretty flowers. in fact the best shit cost money and people seek it out because the better the shit the bigger and more colorful the beauty.

and this is why wrigley field is the most gorgeous place in the world.

so use that shittiness that you feel. use it to make beauty. get your dads keyboards and hook up your headphones to it and play. so many beautiful songs have been based on sadness. i would never lie to you.

either the songs were made from the shittiness of the pianist’s life, or that crappy feeling drove that person to learn to play as a means for escape or a way for them to express themselves other than doing what they really wanted to do like take a giant torch to the entire city and start over.

now uncle tony wasn’t very good at the piano, or the saxaphone or the drums, but when i was in high school we had a dog who died. Chumbi. old Chumbi wasn’t crazy about me and i wasn’t nuts about him neither but when he died i was super sad. so i went down in the basement and i beat the crap out of those drums. for an hour i was the greatest drummer in the world.

and when it was over i learned a valuable lesson. that i should stick to writing.

which is my final bit of unasked for advice. turn that shitty feeling inside into words. if you dont wanna show anyone, fine. fuck em. just write. write and write and write. write truthfully, write a bunch of lies, write a cool combo of the two, but get the poison out. turn it into something that never existed before. use that shit to grow something excellent.

you might suck at first but keep going. everyone sucks at first.

cody the kicker should have practiced more too.

dont grow up and be like him.


i love you very much. next year they’ll break our hearts in new ways. so we got that going for us.

your uncle,