Random Acts of Kindness Worth Mentioning

barry currin, stories of a world gone mad, beaverdamusa.comI experienced two random acts of kindness last week.

Such things are rare these days. Between our cancerous political divides, our general impatience with other people and the fact that this seems like the hottest June on record, it’s hard to find a silver lining.

But last week I did — twice.

And it was wonderful.

The first one happened late Friday afternoon. I had gone to a private mail facility to ship a package to one of Kim’s customers. I ship packages from there instead of the post office because it’s generally less crowded.

When I pulled up to the place, the mail truck was backed in next to the door, and the mail carrier had just finished making her pickup.

This was bad news, because not only was she making her final pickup for the day, she was making her final pickup for the week. Like I said, it was Friday afternoon.

I thought about giving her a pitiful look hoping she would take the hint and wait; but I’m not the kind of person who would ordinarily do that, even though it was important my package begin its little journey as quickly as possible.

Instead, something unthinkable happened.

She asked me if I was mailing a package. When I said I was, she told me to tell the person working the desk inside that she would make a couple of pickups then come back and get it.

It was Friday. It was nearly 5 p.m. Did I mention it was hot?

I’m sure this person was itching to get home, take off those navy blue socks and kick back with a cold, tall sweet tea. But she offered to go empty a couple of big blue mailboxes then backtrack for my package.

I struggled to find the words to thank her. I told her that was the nicest thing anyone had ever done for me.

Still, I was skeptical. I truly thought she would forget to come back. But as I was pulling out of the parking lot, I met her heading back to pick up my package.

The next incident occurred at a fast food place. As you know, these joints are not exactly the epicenters for random acts of kindness.

I went inside and ordered a large drink.

As the cashier was pulling my cup off the stack of cups, another employee — presumably a manager — intervened.

“Is that all you’re getting, just a drink?”

“Yes.”

“Take it. It’s on the house. They’re too expensive anyway, and it’s hot outside.”

They both smiled at me when I fumbled with the words to thank them adequately.

I say thank you all the time, but I do it automatically — out of habit. We all do the same thing. We say it because we’re polite around here.

I am not used to saying it with meaning, and unless I miss my guess, those two kids in the restaurant aren’t used to hearing it with meaning.

Fast food restaurants aren’t exactly the epicenters for appreciative customers, either.

Maybe such things happen to you on a regular basis. Maybe you do such things for people on a daily basis.

If you do, good for you.

I’m going to see just how quickly I can pay those two random acts of kindness forward.

About Barry Currin

Barry tries to be funny and poignant, and he's usually satisfied when he succeeds with one or the other. (Being both is awesome. And sometimes that happens.) Email him: currin01@gmail.com

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