I remember being out with some friends a couple of weeks ago when we passed a young couple walking the opposite way on the sidewalk. As we passed them, they both smiled at all of us and said "You all have a wonderful night!" It was completely unprovoked and entirely refreshing in a city filled with rushing, over-crowded, scowly faces. As a group, we decided to pay those well wishes forward to the next person we saw. About a block up, we found an 300+ pound man alone on a stoop, sporting the grumpiest face I have ever seen. Simultaneously, we all shouted "You have a wonderful night!" to him. His face lit up like the 4th of July and he smiled at all of us, completely surprised, and said "You too!"
|Example of how not to be.|
That's not to say I'm a rainbow candy unicorn to everyone in real life. I'm still sarcastic and goofy and will call you out for saying something ridiculous, like when you're drunk at the bar and think the name "Lily" has five L's in it (right Sam?). But I'll never talk you down to bring myself up. Sometimes I feel negative, judgmental thoughts creeping into my head at the end of a rough day, but I've learned to recognize them and then push them out full force. It doesn't matter to me anymore whether you're fat, thin, handicapped, black, white, deaf, big-haired, overly made-up, gay, straight, transgender, post-abortion, a jesus lover, schizophrenic; as long as you're happy and not hurting or policing anybody else, then keep doing your thing and don't let anybody bring you down.
Niceness breeds niceness. If one person does something nice for another, it can change their entire day for the better and increase their chances of doing something nice for someone else (or so I've experienced, this isn't scientific). If you can learn to quell your judgment and just be nice, you have learned more than most people have been able to grasp in their entire lifetime. One "Bless you!" (or "When you die, nothing happens," if you're an atheist) after a sneeze, two helping hands for a woman with a stroller and a toddler to help her down a flight a stairs, three extra seconds to hold a door for the person behind you, these little things make all the difference. If all of us could just be nice, just BE NICE, we could change a lot around this place, don't you think?
You all have a wonderful night.