Friday, 13 January 2017

Something We Should All Do

Don't anyone dare to say what a nice guy I am......Please don't that is not why I post the following


I was a few minutes early for work  so called into sainsbury's for some dog food on the way.
Of course I treated myself to a sneaky chocolate eclair ( I know, I know) but night shift brings the devil out in a person.
The self service tills were busy and as I and a few others waited in line we watched as a tall, slightly unkempt guy tried to use his debt card to pay for a two litre bottle of coke.
The supervisor was polite and went over to speed the proceedings up, but was forced to explain that his card was some sort of social services payment card which was not valid in the store machines.
The customer began to get slightly irate and it was evident that he perhaps suffered from some mental health issues.
" I need  my coke" he stated somewhat forcefully and as the supervisor gently suggested he use some cash I could see that the store security guard was moving in to help.
I went to the next free self service till and by the time I was finished the supervisor was trying to exlain to the customer that he couldn't use a euro to pay for his drink.
The manager was called and more explainations ensued and I left slightly ashamed that I had witnessed a guy on his uppers.
The queue, like most British queues had remained unseeing.
As I drove out of the car park, I noticed the man sitting with his face in his hands in the store foyer. He had no coat and it had started to hail stone,so on impluse I stoped the car in a disabled bay, hurried into the store and took the bottle of coke which had been taken from the guy and left on the supervisor's table. I paid for it at the self sevice till and smiled at the supervisor with a it's not your fault look before giving it to the man on the bench.
" Enjoy it mate" I told the customer who took the bottle gratefully.

And on the way to work, that eclair never tasted so sweet! 

102 comments:

  1. I'm becoming more and more aware that a gift like that should be completely free of expectations. If coke is what he needed in that moment, it's no use with holding it on the basis that it's bad for him

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    1. I agree, For that moment in time he needed it.
      Hope he found a coat.

      cheers, parsnip

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  2. I recall teaching in a very deprived area and having a child tell me she had no bed "but sometimes I'm allowed to sleep in daddy's bed" - we had 3 spare beds in our house at that point and I have never forgotten how bad I felt for her. ... good on you for doing the little you could.

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  3. i had a similar experience at christmas, i went back, to drop off a cheeseburger, hot chocolate and dog treats to someone sat in the freezing rain, i sat and fussed his dogs while he enjoyed some hot food and a drink and a chat to someone who HE made feel very humble indeed, no one could tell i was crying it was raining too much
    sammie xx

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    1. Bet that made christmas a little nicer for both of you x

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  4. Thank you.
    I still feel really bad about not being quick enough one Christmas Eve when the person in front of me didn't have quite enough money for her very simple shopping. I really wish I had paid the difference.

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    1. I was going to post something very similar - I think we are becoming very suspicious and cynical, I am going to try to follow my gut feelings again... John you are a nice guy!

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    2. I spent £ 1.75
      Thats all

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  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  6. You are SO right .... It is something we should all do!!! A little generosity, compassion and humanity would make the world a much better place.

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    1. Louise , by the look of things most of us DO it anyway

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  7. We all should be so attentive, such a small gesture can do so much. You definitely made a day great, his and yours! Well done!

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  8. Well, you are a nice guy, but we knew that already. It is a good thing to be able to recognise and help someone else. Sorry I can't not say it!

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  9. A small kindness to a fellow human is a simple thing to do. Something as simple as a smile or a chat with a scared looking stranger can make both peoples day a little bit more bearable. Trust me, I've been the scared stranger. You are a lovely man John.... so there! hehehe x

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  10. Thank you for making me smile John.

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  11. It's good to be a Samaritan at the end of a phone line but it's better to be one in real life.

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  12. And I have now learned what the expression "on his uppers" (or "down on his uppers") means. Thank you for the reminder that we're all humans, and need to show humanity to our fellow humans. There - I didn't say what I nice guy I think you are.

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  13. I was in a burger outlet here once, when a classic tramp asked how much for a bun with nothing in it, because he didn't have enough money for a burger. The young staff told him they could not sell him just a bun, and they didn't offer to give him one either. I bought him a burger and handed the money to the young lad. It wasn't enough by about 50p, but the lad said, "Oh, it doesn't matter," and let me off! Why could he not have done that for the derelict?!

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    1. Because you embarrassed him. Up to then he had been following the rules and you made him realize that what you did was the right thing.

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    2. Yes. His training didn't involve that situation. I know the owner of the place, and he is not what you would call generous by nature. He watches his staff at night from home on a webcam, occasionally calling them up to tell them to work harder or something.

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    3. The supervisor was polite and courteous but governed by rules , i think we the public in that queue ( and there were at least 7 observers) could have stepped in earlier

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    4. Ps has anyone heard from Rachel?

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    5. I was just going to comment John I would have stepped forward and paid for the coke in the shop, no sweat. Anyway. People get embarrassed. xxx

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    6. Oh i see you have just been meqn qnd moody silent on he sidelines!

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    7. I only checked in here today. Just as well I think.

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    8. Watch your pees, qs and as, John.

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    9. Im sensing she's gone all mean and moody

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    10. Not at all. I just cant think why you waited until you got into the ruddy car park before you acted.

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    11. Go suck a lemon

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  14. Paying it forward. You are a great guy, John. xx

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  15. Obviously the floor staff don't have the authority or are too scared for their jobs to waive the charge but surely the manager could have quietly slipped him the coke?

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  16. A woman armed with a cardboard cup and a cardboard sign was sitting on the pavement by the tram terminus in the rain. Passers by sometimes donated coins. I gave a 50 cents coin, and wished her a good day. She called me back. Her face was the picture of anger. "It's not enough. You only gave me 50 cents," she screeched. "If you don't want it, you can give it back," I said. But she didn't.
    A word of warning. Being kind is good. But there many bogus beggars underway in Europe's cities and one must be able to tell the difference between the genuine cases and those of the criminal fraternity.
    Many people feel intimidated and these criminals will target people whom they believe to be in that category.

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    1. Yes and these people do spoil things for the real needy individuals ....i guess we have to try and leave our skepticism at the door

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    2. Edinburgh is full of them. They get dropped off from white vans first thing in the morning.

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  17. Check off one random act of kindness for the week. With your life's experience, you probably understood how important that was for him.

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  18. Random acts of kindness - you're right we should do more of these. xx

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  19. You are a NICE guy! Better than nice actually. x

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  20. It seriously is the littlest of things that can mean the most.

    PS Y'are a sweetheart!

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  21. John, that was a simple, but lovely gesture. So often it's important to remember that there but for the grace of God go I...

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  22. I think more of us do things like this from time to time than you might imagine. Just keep spreading it around.

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  23. Portland Oregon is full of homeless people. Homeless for all sorts of reasons, but in a city where it rains most of the time, that is expensive and trendy .. homeless people are really at risk all the time.
    We used to live there. We lived about 4 blocks from a row of parks where we would take the dog each day .. a few times a day.
    There was always the same old woman sitting on a bench. Neat and tidy and feeding a tiny old dog she carried .. I think the dog was better fed than she was.
    We always bought scones then walked to the park for our dog to have his run etc.
    So I started buying an extra scone for the lady and her pup.
    She always looked at me as if I did something bad to her but she ate the scone and I felt good about that.
    When we were getting ready to move to Argentina, I took all the coats and sweaters that I thought would fit her and put them in a bag and handed them to her on one of our walks.
    She looked at me, looked at the clothes and then looked away.
    My husband said, just go .. don't expect anything ..
    Right before we left, to fly to Argentina .. I saw her walking down to the parks. Pushing her grocery cart, with her little dog wrapped up in one of my sweaters. And she was wearing my jacket. Nothing feels better than that :)

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    1. Things are still atrocious for the homeless in Portland, btw. 4 people have died of hypothermia this winter from living on the streets. The new mayor has opened the Portland Building as an emergency shelter. They now admit families and pets. There is a hotline for shelter availability. We need to prepare for things to get much, much worse...

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  24. Perhaps kindness can be infectious. In a good way, naturally.

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  25. Thank you, John, and all the other commenters, for reminding me how important simple kindness is in this world. So much today makes me angry (The Orange One, for example) but simply recognizing the humanity of each other and being kind are perhaps the most important things to do.

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    1. So many people here have done something similar.....that fact is bloody encouraging

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  26. It's a hard thing to walk away from someone in desperate straits. I'm glad you did him a kindness. He'll remember that.

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  27. A good deed, Indeed! We have to seize these opportunities when we encounter them. I believe there is a force at work, call it God, call it Karma, whatever. I believe we are presented with these situations in our daily lives when we don't expect them and when we are busy with the minutiae of our day to day living. How we react determines our fate until the next time and we have a split second to step up. Well, that's what I think, anyway. I also think I have failed these tests sometime along the way and have paid the price for my selfishness. Now, I pay things forward knowing I'll never see the ripples of a kindness given OR received touch a foreign shore. My allusion above is that you have be as willing to receive a kindness as to give one. That's hard for me. I work on being more gracious and open appreciative for other's kindnesses.

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    1. I went back because it felt the right thing to do.....i also associated his need for coke with my need for that eclair.......

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  28. A kind lady was my good samaritan some years ago. I was in the local co-op with a basket of goods, one of which was a tin of baby milk. My turn at the til came and I was about £3 short - so after chatting with the assistant I quickly put the baby milk to one side (knowing I had enough at home for that day). A kind lady behind me just passed me the shortfall without any hesitation! I was very grateful. I knew she ran an electrical shop in the town so I went in some days after and repaid her in full. If only there was more kindness around!

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    1. The fact you remember this so well, probably made you into a person who pays such things forward

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  29. Gandalf said it best...

    http://quotespictures.net/9725/small-acts-of-kindness-and-love-gandalf-the-grey

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    1. No one could have said that better!

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  30. Kind gestures don't really cost a lot and make us feel good too. It's helpful to be reminded of that every now and then. Good on you John.
    Jean

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  31. We were at our local Walmart in the checkout lane behind an elderly woman in one of their motorized scooters. When we walked out to the parking lot we saw her trying to load her groceries into the back of her car, not very successfully. We stopped to help her and she said to us "Do you know, the person in front of me left the clerk twenty dollars to pay for my groceries! I don't even know them." Yes, we need more random acts of kindness in this world. Good for you, John.

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    1. Sue, who comments here a lot inspired me..she bought a homeless guy a fully stocked backpack

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  32. OK, you can't tell a story like that and expect people to NOT say what a nice guy you are!

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    1. I prefer them to think it not say it

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  33. This is why I love reading this blog. You're a good man, John Gray, and most of your followers are good people too. It gives me hope.

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  34. RAK make the world a little bit better place. Well done at being a decent human.

    I hate how the mentally ill just do not fit in this world. We leave sick people to fend for themselves...heartbreaking.

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  35. John - you are a kind man and a sweetheart.

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  36. John - you are a kind man and a sweetheart.

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  37. I am smitten. Truly.

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  38. If you are used to drinking caffeinated beverages then not having them can cause a massive headache. That man did not need a headache on top of his other evident conditions. I'm so glad you wrote a different ending to his morning, John. And I find it inspiring because I've become very reluctant to appear a soft touch in a small community. There are people who will take advantage. We all need to try to walk the line between compassion and being trod on, though.

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    1. I never thought of that.......good point......

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  39. I've said it before and I'll say it again, you're a good egg John Gray.

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  40. I'm not one bit surprised, John.

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  41. You are an angel John - but then I always knew that.

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  42. YOU ARE SUCH A NICE, NICE, NIIICCCEEE GUY! Sorry John, But you are...

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  43. I was with you all the way until you parked in a disabled bay. Naughty but nice.

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    1. Well id sound like fucking mary poppins if i hadnt

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  44. There are so many people like that here because social services for the mentally and a rampaging economy create so many situations like that here. It is the warmest blessing for both when one is able to give and the other receive. Each gets both then.

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  45. I was on one of my local FB Buy and Sell page just before Xmas, where a lady was selling a pretty party dress which would have fitted one of my Grandaughters. Another lady commented that her grandaughter would look lovely in the dress and could the woman who was selling it wait for payment until the following Thursday, when she 'got her money'. I went to her FB page and noticed that her and her husband looked like they either had a drug problem or a drink problem but all I was concerned about was that her grandaughter should have a pretty party dress for the Festive Season so I messaged the seller and told her I would pay for the dress anonymously if she would let the other lady have it. She agreed and all was right in the world for a short time. That was pretty decent of you to do what you did too.

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    1. I was right......most people are like you nana! Lovely decent people x

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  46. I called into 'pets at home ' earlier to get some crickets for our crested gecko . The one where your sister works . It was busy ....people and pets ...dogs getting fitted for harnesses ...kids looking at rabbits .....as I made my way past the small animal section , I noticed an English bulldog like winnie ....i like winnie ...i thought I would stroke her ....i noticed she was on a lead being held by a small red headed child ...Two members of staff were in discussion in my way , I had to get past the staff before I could get to the bulldog ....then I saw something you shouldn't see in any shop ....The bulldog was doing circles ....shitting circles ...The redheaded child was unaware if this , she was looking at soft toys for pets ...,The staff were unaware of it , they had their backs to it ..,,an excited, even younger child ran around the corner ....He was unaware of it .....i grabbed him as he slid to a halt ....One centimetre from 7 sloppy turds ....He was unaware of it .....i mentioned it in passing to the staff , who were still unaware of what was happening over their shoulders .....i carried on and picked up the crickets ....as I returned , the shit was being bagged up by the owners ....A mop was at hand .....i smiled at the staff member and remarked ...." you don't get that at M&S......" as I left the store , the bulldog and the child were outside , the child looked a bit sheepish ....The bulldog was having another shit

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    1. This is jason , not claire ....she wouldn't dare say shit on t'Internet

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    2. There was a lack of three xxx so i suspect that is Jason writing rather than claire
      Either way...your best blog comment to date xxxxx

      I have lived that scenario soooo many times xxxxxxx

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    3. You got that ps in before i commented x

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  47. Proud to have met you John.

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  48. It's me John . I don't know why I'm coming up as claire

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  49. we all should do things like this more often! way to go john!

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  50. OK, Pretend like you didn't see this
    but......You are a really nice guy!

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  51. That was a lovely thing to do. Thank you!
    MissFifi

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  52. A little positive karma. Nicely done.

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  53. There's no better feeling than realising someone actually gives a shit.

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  54. Several years ago, about a year after my beloved Grandma passed away, I was behind an elderly lady at the grocery store. I noticed as she put her items on the belt that she had cheap lunch meat, eggs, cheap white bread, several cans of peas, and one chicken breast. She was telling the clerk she'd been so hungry for chicken and just couldn't resist. As the clerk ran up her total, she was $3.77 short. She looked humiliated, and quietly told the cashier to take the chicken breast back. I felt so bad for her! I gave a $5.00 bill to the cashier, and smiled at the lady, telling her to enjoy her chicken dinner. She was waiting for me when I checked out, gave me a hug and tried to give me my change. I believe I got more out of that experience than she did. Oh, and you ARE a good man!

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  55. So simple an act of kindness and so important. I wish there were more people like you in the world.

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  56. Eclair is also my favorite treat. Indeed it brings out the devil in a person.I'm trying to loose weight and I just can't resist whenever I catch sight of it.

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  57. That was definitely the right thing to do. It really is easy to be kind.

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  58. It's not blowing your own trumpet to post this tale of kindness. It uplifted me because it reminded me that there are lots of kind people around - we need to hold onto that thought at present.

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  59. Wonderful, I would have done the same. I gave two hand made shopping bags away last night in the supermarket, to people who hadn't brought one with them. Let's all try and be kinder. Well done.

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  60. Possibly the nicest £1.75 you ever spent.

    You ARE a nice guy ❤

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  61. Your an arsehole, parking in a disabled bay!!!!!

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    1. Apologies dear hear but needs must

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