Something very irksome happened to the customers of a local bakery recently. As I was thinking about how to present the story, I started thinking back to the character actor in the old TV commercials featuring Fred the Baker, the sleepy-eyed frontman for what was then known as Dunkin' Donuts. The late Michael Vale became famous for the catchphrase, "Time to make the donuts."

Well, this is a true story that happened the day before Thanksgiving at the Sunrise Bakery and Coffee Shop on Bolton Street.

Finding parking around that congested neighborhood is difficult to say the least. So customers who placed their holiday orders, parked wherever they could and then ran inside to wait in a socially-distanced line. When they got back to their vehicles, the cars were all ticketed.

Give me a break! I'm so let down to hear about this and especially in the worst of financial times for mom and pop businesses. Our local version of the famous donut maker is Manny Amaral, along with his family and staff. Manny is the sunshine in the company's name.

I found out about this because Manny called in on the air and retold the story, with his voice cracking, lamenting that the city would do this; however, he said he understood why. He went on to say that he wanted to pay for every parking violation written out to his customers. He asked that anyone who got a ticket to bring it by the Dartmouth Street location and he would gladly take care of them.

Here is a humble, hard-working man, who wakes up in the middle of the night to make the donuts. My admiration and respect for the Amarals are off the charts, and so is my disappointment that this happened in the first place.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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