A letter to my neighbor (who stole my Christmas present)

I returned home a wonderful week visiting friends and family for the holidays. I found some mail waiting for me in my apartment lobby – which had been opened for me.

My aunt mailed a Christmas present to me aaaand….it got stolen.

Here was my reply:

Dear Neighbor, 

I’m guessing you like presents….

Since you opened my mail and took items that were sent to me, you seem like the type 😉 From what I understand, my Aunt Linda sent me a card, a gag gift, and a check. Well, the check was cancelled, the card was for me, and the gag gift probably didn’t mean much to you. 

To compensate, these are for you 

-A gift card to Old Navy (It can’t be cancelled! 😉 ) 

-A Chicago Cubs shirt (Hope you’re a medium) 

-An opened Mp3-Mp4 Digital Audio Player (I’ve had this thing for ever – thought you might want it more than me. Oh, and sorry I didn’t wrap it…) 

Here’s the thing, neighbor – I don’t condone stealing. But I also don’t condone hate. I hope these gifts bring you joy and hope. Apparently this reaction isn’t common – so just know that the next person you take from might not respond this way. 

Happy New Year Neighbor, 

Tony (Unit 14) 

PS – Grab these quick. It would suck if someone stole them before you could get what was delivered to you. (See what I did there? 😉 Sorry….but seriously grab ‘em!)

I shared this letter in a Facebook Live video. I asked friends to share it. So far, we’re up to 800 views and 22 shares. Why is this awesome? Because it’s telling the world that #LoveWins. 

I’d be sad if anyone’s takeaway from this message is, “What the hell?! Why would anyone do that?!” Because asking “Why is _______ so terrible?” or “Why does ______ always happen?” are both very, very disempowering questions.

My hope is that this message gets shared. My hope is that it gets shared over and over until eventually this type of reaction isn’t different or odd….it becomes the norm.

So….help me share it? 


Thanks friends.

Let’s go get ’em.

Other links you might like: 

My youtube channel!

A replay of my follow up video 🙂


#ShoutOut Tuesday: Brianne Beatrice

It’s #ShoutOut Tuesday!

I’m on a mission to be my most positive, healthy, and creative self.

I’ve decided to expand on this mission by shouting out cool people I connect with. These are people who are doing something with their lives who not only inspire me to be my best, but are doing cool work that I think others should know about.

Today’s Shout Out: Brianne Beatrice



When I was a junior in college, I took a course titled Acting II. When I heard that our instructor was the very Brianne Beatrice whom I had once performed with, I was pretty stoked. (And I’m not just saying that because she gave me an A….)



You can see about half of my face. But you can see Brianne! (Photo credit: Michael Griffin.) 

What I love about Brianne is that she’s on her own mission just like me. She spreads positivity. She takes care of her health and well being (though I hear she likes wine. Someone get her a bottle for being awesome.) And her social media statuses on health, beauty, and love are just a small example of her wonderful creativity.

Another thing I admire about Brianne is the way she presents herself unapologetically – something most of us are too afraid to do. We are far too obsessed with worrying about what other people think. We hide parts of our authentic selves because we want to please our friends and family. Let’s not get started on how much we try to please people whom we don’t even hangout with – or want to, for that matter.

One last thing I’ll share: I’ve only been in love once. No…it wasn’t with Brianne 😉 (Though teenage Tony had a crush on a Brianne once…)  After this discovery of love, I went through a phase. I was obessed with the concept. I journaled a lot. And I listened to far too much Jason Mraz. Then, sadly, I slid into “Tony freaking Rossi” mode. I started taking myself far too seriously. I lost that feeling. Along with it – I lost part of my creativity.

Having just turned 28, I’m going through an interesting experience. I’m remembering that feeling. I’m regaining that creativity. I’m fighting off judgement from others in order to move forward with my goals. Being friends with Brianne has reminded me of qualities to help me stay true to my mission statement.

I’m grateful for your reminders, my friend. Keep them coming 🙂


Have a friend who deserves a shout out? Shoot me an email at tony.rossi@gmail.com with the subject “Shout Out Tuesday” and let me know!

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Be happy. That thing you’re worried about? Future-you isn’t even thinking about it right now 🙂