The below story was submitted in the Leave Your Story section of this website by a reader. It’s a short tail of a simple act that resulted in a significant reaction of appreciation and generosity. It’s a great example as to how easy and rewarding random acts of humanity can be.
“While standing in the check-out line at a supermarket, I observed a woman ahead of me figuring out whether she had enough money to pay for the items she had picked up. There was a gentleman with her. The conversation between them indicated he was an acquaintance who had given her a ride to the supermarket in his vehicle and she, in return, was going to pay for items he wanted from the supermarket. Now it appeared she didn’t have enough money to pay for all they had picked up and she was apologizing to him because they needed to put back some items. She expressed how appreciative she was that he had given her a ride and promised him she would make up for it at another time.
There was nothing extravagant about the scant purchase they were attempting to make and it broke my heart that they couldn’t pay for it. I told the cashier I would pay for the items they were deleting from their order and asked her to ring up the items with my order. The faces of that man and woman lit up as they expressed disbelief that someone was actually doing that for them and they both gushed words of appreciation.”
I currently work in the heart of downtown in a major American city. It’s the beginning of March and spring’s welcomed arrival can be sensed by all. Along with the eager anticipation of warm weather, comes the troubling realization that my laziness and self-indulgence over the winter and holidays have caused some of my summer cloths to fit a little snug. I know that after a little procrastination I’ll be back in the gym and eating healthy in the near future, but it also dawned on me that I might be able to do some good while getting in shape.
Things like participating in charity runs, stair climbs, or swims are fantastic means of motivating yourself to get into shape. Also, the repetitive movements of ladling food out at a soup kitchen or hammering nails on a Habitat for Humanity site will burn calories and help others, but these are not random act of kindness.
A simple and random way for a urban worker to keep their diet in check and help someone in need is to give part of your lunch to one of the many hungry, homeless individuals you pass in the streets on your way to and from lunch. For example, if you are getting a foot long sub at Subway, but feel satisfied after eating half of the sandwich you can just pass the second half off to a person that could use it. The individual can only use food to eat, so there is zero spare change uncertain. Spare change uncertain is what I call it when the person uses your generosity to buy booze or narcotics instead of necessities. However, by offering part of your meal your diet stays intact while improving the diet of a person in need.
I think a two and a half year sabbatical from the upkeep of this site has been long enough. Thank you to all that have written me or comment on this blog. I am just reading these remarks now, but all are appreciated and reviewed.
I will do my best to revive this blog, so feel free to share it with your friends and families because I’m going to request the thoughts and stories of my readers as inspiration.
Over a year ago I was driving across the Ohio Tollway. As I approached the first toll the booth operator waved me on as she said, ” the car in front of you pay for you.” As I drove away, I couldn’t help thinking of the brilliance in the simplicity of this Random Act of Kindness. With a few dollar, someone was able to give generosity to a total stranger in a completely random and anonymous way. In turn, I imitated the Random Act of Kindness at the very next toll for the car behind me.
“I live in the Akron, Canton area and there was a very nice person walking in the Akron area dressed as a clown. What this person was doing was adding a quarter to every parking meter that had a car parked at it. When the police officers found out what he was doing, they arrested him! He spent the night in jail and is now facing charges (just fines).
Started to be a nice act of kindness, but what is the world coming to? That’s why I like your site so much, it’s nice to see that there is still some decency, and beautiful people around.”
A woman with a full car of children stopped to get gas at a local gas station. As she filled up her car a man notified her that she had a flat tire. The woman went to the cashier and asked for assistance. Without any hesitation the cashier told her what to purchase in order to fix the flat tire and he would provide the labor. In a light shower of rain the cashier worked on the tire filling it with air and tire filler which would patch the tire until she purchased new ones. It is hard to find this kind of service now-a-days.
If you live in a good size city there is a good chance that you'll see homeless and hungry individuals. Last winter I was in Burger King waiting in line when the woman in front of me gave the employee a five dollar bill and said," will you buy the gentleman over there whatever this can get him?"
The man she had indicated was a person I had seen mainly a time asking people for money and whom was in Burger King to get out of the cold. It was really cool to see a true random act of kindness happen before my eyes no matter how big or small the act is.