Monday, January 16, 2012

The "next-door neighbor" test

My wife is familiar with me saying "that person passes the next door neighbor" test.

By that I mean the individual -- and I'm always referring to a public figure when I use the phrase -- appears to have a sincerity, warmth and friendliness that would make living next to that person enjoyable. (Think about those over-the-fence conversations you have with your neighbors and you are therefore applying the "next door neighbor" test.)

As an example, I believe that former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and his wife would be fantastic next door neighbors. Of course, there are other politicians who wouldn't pass such a test; in an effort to not embarrass such individuals, I will not name any of them. And, yes, they can be found in both of the major political parties.

So, what follows is my top-ten list of public figures (none of whom I personally know) who I think would be great next door neighbors. They are listed in alphabetical order (along with their spouse's names, if I know that name or if there is a spouse):

Warren Buffett
Barbara and George Bush
Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter
Tony Dungy
Janet and Mike Huckabee
Nelson Mandela
Amy and Phil Mickelson
Bob Schieffer (full disclosure: I have met him before)
Tim Tebow
Brian Williams

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