He may have been speaking around 500 BC, but Confucius was one cool cat who knew where things were at. I have no illusions of being remembered 2500 years from now, but here are a few trail makers of my own that may bring you some solace.
Whenever I make it a point to move as quietly as a ninja mouse (albeit a large one), I will inevitably and without fail, knock over half the stuff on the coffee table and wake my napping partner. Why? Because I told myself as I set the laundry basket down at the end of the couch, “I’ll do it later”. There is no ‘later’. Time is not infinite merely because I didn’t think I had enough of it to put the empty basket away in the first place. I’m tired of apologizing or having to go back later and do something I didn’t have time for all over again.
Unopened mail on the table? Time to empty the trash can? Repeat with me what an old mentor once imparted to me: “Do it now.”
Do that on all the little simple stupid stuff and you’ll feel like a magician. Simplify your life. “Check, check and check”.
If I put my right fist in the back corner where the corner of the tiles meet the tub, I have a firm push-point from which to lift myself upright from the bath before the water drains out. The gift is I may never have made the discovery if there hadn’t been at least one time when my other hand slipped on the outside edge. Water, porcelain and very little resistant friction conspired together and whispered there might be a better way to get out of the tub. Stubborn as I am, I have learned sometimes you have to push-back to get standing.
The only time the new driver’s side windshield wiper will come off is when it’s raining. Granted, it’s the only time I need them, but having to pull over, climb out of the car and stand in the rain as I re-attach is what gave me this afternoons’ idea of wrapping the post with a little electrical tape so they don’t slide off. Resistance is good.
The only time both Red Box kiosks within walking distance of the house will be down is when I pull up with 15-minutes to spare before they’re late and I get charged for a 2nd day.
So I called as if to time-stamp my responsibility, did my good deed in reporting both performance issues, and heard there’s nothing they can do except direct me to a third box 15-minutes away from the first two and try again. “Call us back after you’ve returned the disc”.
By the time I’ve gotten back home and made the call to ask for my credit I’ve driven around town for more than 30-minutes. It’s happened before. But this time, I knew what I was going to have to do and did it. Defiance. You will not take my money. Score $1.50 for Justice!
Life is never easy. At one time or another, I feel unstable. We all do. But if you take a minute and take a breath, look around as you do. There is restorative beauty to be found where you least expect it.
But many problems are much larger than me laughing at myself or the goofy ways I trip myself up. What if you live in downtown Syria? Or what if you’re the invisible 9-year old kid who still can’t read much more than menu board at the local fast food place…and no one cares. What if you’re just too beaten to get up one more time?
Two weeks ago, a stranger saw an old man pushing a paleta cart around Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood. It was hot and something moved the stranger to stop and buy some of the mexican popsicles.
Turns out the gentleman vendor’s name was Fidencio Sanchez (89) and he’d been selling the icy treats to help make ends meet for more than 20-years. In the last several months, his daughter, their only child had died, leaving 2 kids behind. In the wake of the tragedy, his wife then fell ill. No money. But like so many of us and without any fanfare, Sr. Sanchez picked himself up, dusted off the old push-cart and went back to work pushing his cart up and down the streets in the summer sun. At 89, he wasn’t being clever. He simply insisted on not going down without a fight. Resistance!
That stranger I mentioned earlier was Joel Cervantes. He was the guy who had stopped and bought $50 worth of paletas that day. But he did much more than stop there. Something in this regular guy made him keep going.
Together, Cervantes and a friend decided to see if they could raise $3,000 for the family on a GoFundMe page. In 22-days, they and 17,000+ others raised $384,270 for the Sanchez family.
This moment is gone. The FundMe page is no longer accepting donations for the Sanchez family. But who’s to say there isn’t something you can do on your own for someone around you…you may not even know them. For all I know, it may exactly be what makes your act into its’ own kind of beautiful.
Beauty loves disguises. Find it. Make it. Look for it. Buy someone a card or a can of soup. Put a kind note in someone’s pocket or take someone to lunch like a co-worker did for me this week. I don’t think they had any idea I was having a rough day, but their random-act-of-kindness made the rest of the afternoon lighter and brighter.
The point in all of this is whatever you do isn’t nearly as big a deal as you doing it. Who knows, you may well be redeeming someone’s hope and energizing your own in the same brush stroke. Nothing like a 2-for-1 Sale on Love, right? So be good to each other this week. Love wins!
And to all the haters out there, Confucius says, “Let it go”.
Resistance is futile.
X Ambassadors – Unsteady
2010 – October 1, 2016
“COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A 6-year-old boy who was critically wounded in a school shooting died Saturday, days after a 14-year-old boy opened fire on a school playground, authorities said.
Jacob Hall had been fighting for his life at a hospital after a bullet struck him in a main artery in his leg, causing him a major brain injury due to a “catastrophic” loss of blood, his doctor said. Jacob died about 1 p.m. Saturday, and an autopsy will be done Sunday, Anderson County Coroner Greg Shore said.
Authorities say Jacob, another student and a first-grade teacher at Townville Elementary were wounded by the teenager, who had just killed his father at their home. After the slaying, the teen – who is not old enough to have a driver’s license – drove a pickup truck about 3 miles down a country road, crashed at the school and started firing with a handgun, authorities said.
The wounded were struck as a door opened for recess. Another teacher who heard the first gunshot was able to get other students safely inside, school officials have said. The other wounded student and the injured teacher, Meghan Hollingsworth, were treated and released from a hospital.
Jacob’s parents, Renae and Rodger Hall, thanked the nurses and doctors who cared for Jacob and Hollingsworth, “who put her life on the line to try to protect and save Jacob.”
Jacob died surrounded by his family at Greenville Health System Children’s Hospital, his parents said in a statement.
“Jacob came into our lives six years and four months ago and changed it completely. He showed us how to love, laugh and smile even on days we did not want to,” his parents said. “God gave him to us and he was taken away from us by a senseless act. We know that Jacob has already forgiven this child for what he did to him and his family because that’s the kind of child he was.”
born Szymon Perski
August 2, 1923 – September 28, 2016
“The most important thing in life is to dare. The most complicated thing in life is to be afraid. The smartest thing in the world is to try to be a moral person.” – Shimon Peres
“Former Israeli President Shimon Peres, a force in the nation’s politics for decades and a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, has died at 93, two weeks after suffering a stroke, according to The Jerusalem Post.
Peres had been hospitalized since the stroke on Sept. 13 and doctors had put him in an induced coma. The stroke caused heavy bleeding in Peres’ brain, hospital director Dr. Itzik Kreiss told The Associated Press. Doctors told Haaretz on Tuesday that the former leader’s condition was irreversible. He died surrounded by family at Tel Hashomer Hospital in Israel.
Peres was one of Israel’s longest-serving political figures. He was first elected to the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in 1959 and held a number of top posts and cabinet positions over the next five decades. He briefly served as prime minister on three occasions, and spent his final seven years in politics as president during Benjamin Netanyahu’s tenure as prime minister.”
Sources: Peres Quote Source – http://www.azquotes.com/quote/645653; Huffington Post by Nick Robins-Early – 09/27/2016 10:29 pm ET; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shimon_Peres; Photo: http://www.thejc.com/news/israel-news/163896/shimon-peress-coffin-lie-state; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/shimon-peres-dead_us_56a69d06e4b0b87beec5cf9a;
Banner Coastal Redwood Forest by Eric E Photography is used with permission.
Everything Has Beauty by Confucious ckLam Photography: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/c/confucius104254.html; Graphic: https://c1.staticflickr.com/7/6085/6054671681_e98e937582_z.jpg; Three Men in a Tub by R Baird: http://herasnezachar.blogspot.com/2010/06/rub-dub-dub.html; Unstable – adaptation by dan4kent; Raining Kindness: http://myocn.net/power-random-act-kindness/
READ MORE ABOUT FIDENCIO AT: http://unisoultheory.com/index.php/2016/09/29/kindness-retirement-fund/ and http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/community-raises-more-than-362000-for-89yearold-street-vendor/news-story/d9585487a8638d8b5b977d18ca36b76b. Closing pic is Mr Sanchez with Joel Cervantes Macias, left, and Jose Loera, who set up his GoFundMe page
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