I don't understand much. Maybe it's me.

Right. It's not you. It's me.

For example, whenever people ride a train at an amusement park, why are they compelled to wave at strangers? Why are the strangers compelled to wave back? Is this a law I've never heard of? You could pass these folks 45 times a day and not even look at them. If you saw one of them on a walking trail passing the other way, you might even pretend not to see them so you wouldn't have to wave, talk to or acknowledge his or her presence on this planet in any way.

But if he or she passed you on a train, you'd be willing to dislocate your shoulder to wave at them.

I don't understand it.

I don't understand why people don't pick up after their dogs. Well, OK, it's gross. I once was among you horribly rude people. I didn't always pick up after my dog while walking him -- until I met my wife and she reformed (shamed) me with the old, "How would you like it if someone let their dog do this on your lawn? We have to be good neighbors."

Now that I've become a good neighbor -- which I'm sure some of my real neighbors would laugh at when my kids are outside screaming at 9 a.m. on a Sunday -- I've given myself a firm ethical ground on which to stand when I ask "WILL YOU PLEASE PICK UP AFTER YOUR DOG SO MY KIDS DON'T STEP IN IT AND UNKNOWINGLY WALK INTO MY KITCHEN WITH IT ALL OVER THEIR SHOES?"

Just trying to be a good neighbor. Thanks.


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I don't understand most of what's on Facebook -- including how much time I feel compelled to spend on it, even though I somehow lived nearly four decades without it. Just today I saw someone post a long list of things they plan to do over the next month. Why would anyone else care about that? Why would someone think other people would care about that -- unless they want to give burglars a heads-up as to when the house will be empty, so they can rob them blind.

I also don't need to know what you're eating for breakfast. Or that I desperately need Jesus in my life and that I'm doomed to spend eternity trying to put out the fire in my shoes (I'm not saying I don't, either, but I don't understand why people just can't be happy they have him and leave it at that). I don't need your personal philosophy shoved down my throat (congratulations -- you found a quote on the Internet). I don't understand why I have to know every time your kid says something cute (OK -- I'm guilty of this as well, but since my kids are cuter and smarter than yours, I'm pretty sure I'm just making the world a better place).

I don't understand the fascination with Miley Cyrus. I don't understand the fascination with lots of celebrities, but she's the one I really don't get. That reminds me -- I don't understand twerking either. It's not sexy, it's not artistic, it's not humorous, and it's not entertaining by any definition of the word. Therefore, I really, really don't understand the Miley Cyrus-twerking thing.

I don't understand how anyone finds 97-pound models attractive. Real women have curves, therefore making it impossible to mistake them for 11-year-old boys.

I don't understand soccer. That much work for a couple of points a game isn't appealing to me. At least they let guys fight in hockey.

I don't understand people who don't open their doors on Halloween. And I really don't understand people who open their doors but say they don't have any candy. That happened to my kids last year. That guy probably doesn't clean up after his dog, either.

Contact Tony Hicks at thicks@bayareanewsgroup.com, Facebook.com/BayAreaNewsGroup.TonyHicks or Twitter.com/insertfoot.