The ‘Sprout Man’ had a positive impact on all

Steve Meyerowitz, the “Sprout Man,” has passed despite his credentials as one of the best of us. He ate well and taught us how to do the same. He was universally liked and admired and so many people attended his funeral that any spectator might have guessed they were burying a head of state. He was generous to those around him and during a WAMC fund drive, there was always a donation from the Sprout Man. It was as if this nice man wanted to take the heavy load off my shoulders. When you met Steve in the street, he always had this ability to make you feel good about yourself ā€” at least I did.

His wife and his brothers and children all got up to say something about him. These were not just platitudes ā€” you can hear sincerity and know what it means. His wife, Beth, got right to my heart when she looked out at the audience and said, “We’ll be all right.” A man who cares about his children is one to ride the river with and Steve did. His children adored him, as did his brothers.

He was a pilot and a musician and a healer. Beth says that she fell in love with him the minute she laid eyes on him. Every town has a group of special people. Steve Meyerowitz was such a person and while it really doesn’t help to talk this way, one has only to wonder, why him? He left a big void.

After the funeral we went out to Route 23 where cars were parked as far as the eye could see. We walked a good distance and when we got to our car we were astounded to see that someone had wedged themselves in front of us so as not to block a drive way. Their car was literally mounted on ours. Whoever the galoot was, he or she decided to push our car with theirs and in doing so left a dent in the front of our car. They didn’t even pull up an inch. We had just come from a funeral, honoring a man of great decency who adhered to a personal code of conduct that was all of us could emulate. Obviously the galoot who unashamedly banged our car and then just stayed there without even caring to leave a bit of distance was anxious to honor the same man that we were there to say goodbye to. So, what could the dope have been thinking? Why was it okay to try to push our car back, to leave a dent in the car and then to act with impunity and join the other mourners?

The lovely Roselle always cuts someone a break. This time however, she was off the wall. She just didn’t understand who could operate in such a manner. I am sure that each of you, dear readers, has seen this kind of thing before. Perhaps it’s happened to you. I am sure that the dent will cost a few hundred dollars to repair but that really isn’t the point. We considered waiting for the aggressor to come back to their car and to confront him but what good would that have done? It was clear what had happened. I’m sure the wrongdoer would have denied his transgression and then the only choice would have been to call the police so we decided not to do anything but leave. Would we really have wanted to cause a scene? What would you have done?

This is a strange world that is now down a very good man. We are, of course, imperfect. Some people choose to turn their own backs on personal responsibility and not even care if they caused damage. We’ll eat the cost but what could have the perp been thinking?

Originally published in the Berkshire Eagle, 9/21/15

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