I was inspired by Teri Fode’s writing in her blog to not just pass by while passing judgement on people with cardboard signs asking for food and/or money.
Last week I saw a man sitting on the sidewalk with just such a cardboard sign. I had to go around the block and then find a parking spot. I am not the type of person who can hand out money and not ask what the story is behind it. This man, who turned out to be my age was divorced and homeless. I gave him the money and then casually asked what he was doing to improve his situation. He was well spoken and very clean cut.
His story was that he was claustic phobic and could not live indoors. He also could not work indoors. I had never seen him before, but he has been on the corners of the area for some time. The police were very good to him and he had a tent set up on a vacant lot close by, but away from traffic.
I asked if he would mind it I took a picture. He asked why and I told him I liked his sign. He asked if it worked and I said I could not say for sure because of the blog I had recently read about not passing judgement on people with cardboard signs – I would have stopped anyway.
I told him I liked the sign because our life, what makes it enjoyable, is random act of kindness.
People need random acts of kindness shown to them because daily life can be hard.