The Best Neighbor Ever.

150_koko_and_mr_rogers.jpgFifteen Reasons Why Mister Rogers was the Best Neighbor Ever lays out a pretty convincing case. For example:
Most people have heard of Koko, the Stanford-educated gorilla who could speak about 1000 words in American Sign Language, and understand about 2000 in English. What most people don’t know, however, is that Koko was an avid Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood fan. As Esquire reported, when Fred Rogers took a trip out to meet Koko for his show, not only did she immediately wrap her arms around him and embrace him, she did what she’d always seen him do onscreen: she proceeded to take his shoes off!

I never watched the show, since I was in school, but now wish I’d known him. Link

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When I lived in Pittsburgh I went to meet a friend for lunch who worked at WQED. She gave me a brief tour and we ran into Fred Rogers. She introduced me. He was very sweet and I told him that when I was a kid I thought that the trolley went to the town of "Maple Leaf" (not Make-Believe) ... I thought it was in Canada because they had a monarchy (all I knew was that they had kings & queens on their money and we had presidents) and we were a democracy.

He thought that was funny.
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I once mentioned Mr Roberts to one of my sons. He said he feared him. It confused me at first until I realized I was always soft spoken before disciplining my sons.

Mr Rogers was the epitome of my darker side.

NO! I almost never used corporal punishment on my children. After spanking one son with Matchbox tracks and seeing the horrible welts, I never ever physically attacked any of them again. Yeah, I'm a fucking saint.
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Not to to denigrate the memory at all, but this section of the linked article reads to me like the habits of an obsessive-compulsive:

Tom Junod explained that Mr. Rogers weighed in at exactly 143 pounds every day for the last 30 years of his life. He didn’t smoke, didn’t drink, didn’t eat the flesh of any animals, and was extremely disciplined in his daily routine. And while I’m not sure if any of that was because he’d mostly grown up a chubby, single child, Junod points out that Rogers found beauty in the number 143. According to the piece, Rogers came “to see that number as a gift… because, as he says, “the number 143 means ‘I love you.’ It takes one letter to say ‘I’ and four letters to say ‘love’ and three letters to say ‘you.’ One hundred and forty-three.”
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