Friday, March 6, 2009

I Saw God Today...

Well, actually it was yesterday, but hey, who's counting.

It's been a long, rough couple of weeks and I'll be the first to admit that this week I've just been tried and pretty much given up on everything. And, yes, I've been feeling sorry for myself. But I've found that generally when things get to that point, something comes along that turns your head and makes you realize that things aren't always as bad as they seem.

Yesterday for lunch I walked down to the Penn Station that isn't too far from work. The weather was nice and I just needed to get out of the building for awhile. I went by myself because I haven't been in the most social mood lately (see previous comment about feeling sorry for myself). As I was going in, I noticed a homeless man standing on the sidewalk outside the strip of stores/restaurants.

Now, I've seen this guy around before, and I'll admit that he kind of creeps me out. He tends to stare. And in the past when I've been eating outside at Gumbo YaYa's, he'll come sit down at on of the other tables and just sit there and watch me eat. I know that he's probably okay, but still, it creeps me out.

Well, yesterday when I saw him, I made a point to avoid him. I'll admit to that. But later I noticed that he was outside Penn Station and I started thinking about how much it must suck to be a homeless person dependent on other people during a recession (not that it's ever a good thing to be homeless). I was pondering all this stuff when a nice normal looking college guy walks into the restaurant. I'm assuming he was in college anyway. He looked to be in his early 20s and was dressed all in UK gear, which at lunch time generally means you don't have a real job anywhere.

Anyway, so this kid comes in and gets in line to place his order, but he keeps looking back out the window at the homeless guy. Finally, he gets out of line, goes outside and starts talking to this guy. Now, as I was inside, I couldn't hear what they were saying, but after a few minutes, the college guy comes back in with the homeless man. They both get in line and when it comes time for them to order, college boy tells the homeless guy to "Order whatever you want."

By this point, I was done with my food and had to get back to work, but that stuck with me all day. Here was this kid, probably in school, probably doesn't have much money, and he takes the time to do something really nice for this person he doesn't even know. This person that I had seen and avoided because he made me uncomfortable.

I like to think that I'm a good person. That I don't judge others based on what they look like or dress like or whatever. But the truth is, I could have done the same thing for that guy, but I didn't. In fact, it never even occurred to me that he might be hungry. And yet, this kid took it upon himself to make sure that he had something to eat that day.

It really makes you think about what you could/should be doing every single day....

1 comment:

John said...

Thanks for sharing this (sorry it took me so long to catch up on reading it.)

I keep putting myself in situations where in retrospect, I have to remind myself - "I used to be a nice person, why wasn't I that guy then?"

It takes effort and I have not put in the effort. I let life take over and trample me down.

Thanks noticing this and sharing it. There are probably moments like this in everyone's day we miss because we aren't looking for them.