This past Wednesday I had another random act of kindness happen to me. After work, my c-worker Rob and I decided to go out for a drink at the local bar. As we were sitting there, this guy kept looking over at us, and I kind of wondered if I knew him, or he knew us. A few minutes later, he got up, came over and said “hey guys, you look like you might enjoy these” as he handed us a pair of tickets to the Toronto Maple Leafs home opener!
I was so shocked at first that I didn’t hear what he said next, but after asking him to repeat what he just told us, he said that he had these extra tickets, and instead of trying to resell them, he wanted to perform a random act of kindness and give them to a couple of people who looked like they would truly appreciate and enjoy the gift. This was an unbelievable thing to do for a couple of strangers, and all he wanted us to do was pay it forward, and perform our own random act of kindness. Believe me, we certainly will, as this was as kind of thing that no one has ever done for me.The game wasn’t that bad either. Despite the Leafs losing, the atmosphere at the Air Canada Centre was electric, and it was quite the experience, something I will never forget.
Great people really do exist in the world, you just have to believe, and allow yourself to see them. Keep your faith in humanity.
Yesterday, as I was attempting make my way back to my place, I was struggling to come up with enough change to get on the streetcar here in Toronto. As the streetcar pulled up, I managed to get the exact amount of change for the trip. However, before I could step onto the streetcar, a lady approached me and said “I could see you were having trouble getting the exact change, why don’t you just come on with me since I have a day pass and it will count for both of us and you can save your change?” I stopped, shocked that someone would be so kind to make this offer, and thanked her for her kindness as we both got onto the streetcar. I asked her why she would do something like that to a complete stranger when she didn’t have to, and she said “I don’t get to do it often, but you look like someone who would appreciate something like this being done for them.” You know what, she was absolutely right. I was, and still am, completely appreciative, thankful, and amazed at this random act of kindness, and promised her I would pay the gesture forward. She smiled, and as I was about to get off at my stop, said “I would like nothing more than for you to do just that.”
This is one of those goals I set that I was never really comfortable with in publishing when I originally came up with my list. I don’t believe that random acts of kindness are things that should be publicized, because you are taking away from the act itself, and putting more of the act on yourself instead.
There are websites that promote random acts of kindness, but people will only submit their acts for the recognition, when the act should really be an anonymous gesture of kindness to your fellow human. It is not about promoting yourself as being a good human being.
Anyway, today while at work I found $50, and because there was no way of finding out who lost this money in such a public space, I decided that the best way to disperse my new findings was to not take joy in it myself, but instead to pay that good fortune forward. I decided to buy lunch for 3 individuals and drinks for another random 2 on my way home from work.
I didn’t deserve to keep this money for myself, so the best way to spend my new-found fortune was to share it with others, in hope that they would recognize my kindness and some day pay it forward themselves. I didn’t want anything from this money, except the hope that others would take some small joy in a random act of kindness.
I am still not comfortable in writing about this, and it wasn’t a large sum of money, but I hope that if anyone takes anything from this, they too will recognize the joy and happiness in sharing the wealth and paying it forward. Today (day 12 of my 30 days of Happiness) was a good day, and it was because I was able to some small happiness to others for even a brief moment.
This is a follow-up to what I had posted before about the people I like. I don’t think it is a lot to ask for.
Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room’s only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.
The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation.
Every afternoon, when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window. Continue reading