17 April 2010

Good Deed of the Day

I was sitting in my car at a stoplight. A young guy, maybe 19 or so, was crossing one way. Hoodie, jeans, bag of fast food in his hand.

A homeless-looking guy - long, tangly hair, shuffling, looking down at the ground and wearing multiple layers of dirty clothes with holes in them, was crossing the other.

I couldn't hear them, but I could read lips.

"Hey," the kid said as the homeless guy passed. The homeless guy literally jumped. I suppose most people never speak to him.

The kid held open his Subway bag right there in the middle of the street.

"Here. Take one if you want."

The homeless guy staggered back a step. He recovered, reached in the bag and took a sandwich.

"Thank you, thank you." The man was sort of bobbing and bowing and almost dancing.

Even as the kid was almost all the way across the crosswalk, the homeless man turned again and yelled "Thank you" one more time.

15 April 2010

Parents, What Say You? Volume 3

I was at a coffeehouse that has one bathroom. I went over by the door and discovered that someone was using the bathroom and that there was a cute little serious-faced blond boy of about 8 years waiting before me.

I gave him a smile and we stood there and waited and waited. The person finally came out.

He went in and I waited and waited. He took forever.

When he came out, I feared the Stench from Hell, because I knew no boy ever takes that long to pee.

What I saw amazed me, though. The little stinker had pulled out a long, long strand of paper towels, leaving it attached to the dispenser, and had tied the rope of towels in a knot through the toilet paper dispenser, blocking the toilet.

It was bizarre. He knew I was waiting. He knew I would know who did it. And yet he made this weird barrier? art project? whatever.

I decided to bust him. I walked out, went to him - he wasn't standing near anyone - leaned over and asked quietly "Why did you do that?" He didn't answer, but his mom was nearby and she asked me "What is the problem?"

I said "You have to see this," and took her to see what he had done.

I was kind of chuckling and she was puzzled but took it well, gently leading the kid off while asking "What is up, buddy? Why did you do that?"

I never heard the answer.

So, parents, what say you?
1. Should I have busted him on his behavior at all?
2. Have your kids ever done anything like that?
3. What do you think was up?

14 April 2010

The Layoff Chronicles Part 75: Interviewing

Interviewing for jobs reminds me of something else I don't like...oh, yes, DATING.

You get dressed up and go out and put on your best face and try to answer questions pleasantly and intelligently.

You find yourself saying things you didn't know you were going to say.

You wonder if this could ever work.

You wonder what they are thinking about you.

You wonder if you should have had that third cup of coffee and if you are talking waaaay too much.

You wonder if they are psychos underneath it all.

You wonder if you sound like a complete idiot.

You leave feeling that it went ok. Kind of. Better than ok.

Then you wait for a call back.

You count days, try to figure out if they will ever call.

You wonder what you say if they do call.

You hear someone else got called.

You wonder: Why them? Why not me? Am I that bad? The other person is really better than me? Has someone been spreading rumors about me?

You think: I didn't want to see them again anyway.

Then you do it all again.
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