Random act of kindness
Someone posted this on a cell phone forum I’ve been hanging out in:
I hesitate to tell this story, lest it seem self-congratulatory, and if
it does I apologize. But it’s Diamond-related and I got such a kick out
of it, I had to tell somebody…..
By way of background, I’m retired and while not rich, I’m comfortable.
I rarely donate to organized charities, feeling that far too much of
such monies goes to administrative costs, so my modest philanthropy
often takes the form of what has become known as a “random act of
kindness”: when the person in front of me at the grocery store is a
couple of dollars short of the amount necessary to cover their
purchases, I throw in the difference; if I see a young mother at
Walmart who has a child lusting after a small toy mom obviously can’t
afford, I’ll buy it and throw it (in a bag, with a cash receipt) into
the mother’s cart. Such acts usually cost only a few cents to a few
dollars, and the joy they put on the face of the receiver makes them an
incredibly worthy investment.
So, I’m in my local Alltel store the other day, checking to see if they
had any spare batteries in stock (they didn’t) and a young college girl
was inspecting a demo Diamond. She overheard my request and asked how I
liked my new phone. We talked a few minutes, I showed her some of the
features, and she said she had just one day left to decide whether to
keep the Touch that she had purchased, or exchange it for the Diamond.
She was clearly lusting after the Diamond, but was hesitating; when I
asked why, she explained that it was going to cost $120 for the upgrade
and she didn’t think she could afford it.
I wanted to help her out, but $120 was a bit much, so I told her I was
a pretty good bargainer– maybe I could talk the store into giving it
to her for half price. She got excited at that, so I went back to the
clerk she was working with, slipped him $60, and quietly asked him to
tell the girl he’d found a way to cut her upgrade cost to $60. Instead,
he went to the back of the store, and came back a minute later with the
manager, who had a half-smile on his face. The manager motioned for me
to come with him, and we walked over to where the girl was playing with
To my surprise, he told her that there was a sale on Diamonds today,
and if she wanted one, he could do it as a straight across trade (IOW,
he absorbed the other $60). She was ecstatic, effusive in her thanks to
me for finding out about the “sale”, and I left as the clerk started
the process of exchanging her phone. The manager and I exchanged
thumbs-up as I headed out the door, secret partners in making another
persons day a bit brighter.
If you’ve never commited a random act of kindness, you should. It just makes you feel good.