The Invisibles

By Bruce Firestone | Uncategorized

Jul 10

[Based on a true story]

[Submitted to Random Act of Kindness/Share Your Story]

A businessman is hurrying to a meeting; he is late. It’s in a busy part of his trendy town. It’s early spring and still cold.

He sidesteps 5 homeless people– 4 men and a seldom seen woman. Other well dressed hipsters are also walking by, over and around this group of homeless.

The man is wearing a t-shirt under his dress shirt that his eldest daughter gave him for Christmas. It’s made by RAK, Random Act of Kindness, and it’s supposed to remind him to do something selfless each and every time he wears it. He’s missing his daughter– she’s this funny, pretty, off-beat, lively person who is the most loyal family member she can possibly be. She always has everyone’s back in their famdamily. She’s off at U of T.

Thinking about her, he suddenly stops and goes into a coffee shop owned by a local who competes (successfully) with mega chains from Canada and the U.S. He buys 5 coffees, grabs tons of sugars and cream, and leaves with a loaded-down cardboard coffee tray. He goes back over to the group and says, “I brought this for you guys. It’s still pretty cold and it looks like you could use something warm…” He spends a few minutes distributing coffee and fixings and talking with them a bit.

He is late for his important meeting. But this is a priority.

About an hour and 15 minutes later, he is heading back to his car. His meeting is over and it was successful despite his tardiness. A woman comes up to him on the sidewalk. She says, “Do you mind if I give you a hug?” It’s the homeless woman to whom he gave coffee earlier that day.

“I can always use a hug!”

So she hugs him and says, “I wanted to thank you. We are the invisibles; people never look at us, never see us. They don’t want to. But you did. It means a lot.”

He has to admit, “I didn’t actually do anything. You see it’s the (long-sleeved) t-shirt I’m wearing.” He pulls one sleeve down further so the woman can see these initials “RAK” embroidered there. “My oldest daughter gave this to me and you see every time I wear it, I’m supposed to do a Random Act of Kindness. So you really have to thank her not me.”

“What’s her name?” she asks.

“Boo.”

“Her name is Boo?”

“That’s her nickname.”

“Oh, well can you thank Boo for all of us?” she asks pointing back to where the other homeless are.

“You bet,” he says.

[Based on a true story.]

@ProfBruce

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Bruce is an entrepreneur/real estate broker/developer/coach/urban guru/keynote speaker/Sens founder/novelist/columnist/peerless husband/dad.

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