#14: Random Act

The Challenge: Do something to help someone you don’t know.

Well, it seemed as though my opportunity found me today. I was walking into church as I saw a woman carrying a bunch of grocery bags from the church to her car. She was filling her car with the bags of food donated for the local food pantry. I asked her if she needed a hand. She welcomed my help. As I followed her inside to the church lobby, my eyes widened to see the “multiplication of the grocery bags.” Holy donations, Batman! It was so nice to see how generous everyone had been. WOW- there were A LOT of bags. I grabbed a bunch and headed to her car. Seeing us going back and worth another woman joined in. We had to stop eventually because church was starting, but the three of us picked up right where we left off after the service and as a team we packed two cars fuller than full. It was such a great feeling to see a need and to help fill it. I sensed that the lady who had volunteered to help was less than enthused about this job. Sometimes volunteers who get assigned a project end of doing it completely solo, which I’ve noticed can lead to volunteer burnout. It’s a nice feeling to help a loyal volunteer!
I didn’t even realize I had completed this challenge until after it was over. (In fact, Kim had to encourage me that it did in fact satisfy the conditions of today’s challenge.) It all started in the dentist’s office, my favorite place to be. Fortunately, I have the best dentist in the world (for those of you in Madison, it’s Dr. Brett Veerman of Dental Health Associates; tell him I sent ya) so it could definitely be worse.

One of my newest crowns — I have a growing collection — cracked last week, so I was in to have them take a look at it. As I was waiting in the chair, an unfamiliar hygienist came in with a fairly excited look on her face. “Are you Jason, the guy who does the artwork?” she asked.  “Um, yes,” I replied.

She went on to tell me that she had received one of my prints last Christmas, and that her daughter had seen me give a cartooning workshop a while back. She said that her daughter was a big fan of my comic strip, and had the print proudly displayed in her bedroom. “She’s pretty modest about it,” continued the hygienist, “But she’s a pretty good little artist. And she really thought your presentation was cool.”

I thanked her for the compliment, and offered to draw a little something for her daughter (I had nothing but time on my hands at that point.) She found a piece of paper, I sketched little Jason and personalized it with some words of encouragement for her daughter. Kind of a fun little moment. I remember looking up to quite a few artists when I was in 8th grade, and a little note like this would have had me sailing. It didn’t seem like much at the time, but maybe the note will encourage her to keep pursuing her passion.

Dark Room Confessionals:
Bonus Video: Kim | Jason


vote.gifSo, who was most creative with today’s challenge? Who went beyond the comfort zone and put the biggest hammer on Adultitis? Who did a better job of capturing the spirit of childhood, Kim or Jason? Cast Your Vote!

Tomorrow’s Challenge: Audio Sneak Peek

10 thoughts on “#14: Random Act

  1. When I made my plan to go grocery shopping today, I had this challenge in mind. I had a chance to help in two very small ways. I picked up someone’s grocery list that she dropped (turns out it wasn’t hers after all, but we put it on top of the produce so maybe the person would see it) and I informed someone with just a few groceries in her cart where the Express Line was. Small, but the idea anyway.
    I also coordinated more chili for the Men’s Shelter I take care of once a month – but this seems like people I know because I’ve been doing it every month for a few years now. I’ll keep my eyes peeled for more opportunities…

  2. Today we left a dollar on someone’s car. We had a hard time coming up with something that would help someone else out. Neither one of us came across an opportunity duing the day. After dinner, we snuck out into the parking lot and made someone a buck richer.

  3. I decided that I fulfilled this challenge a few weeks ago but I still looked for something today and I even thought it would count if I was extra nice to someone I didn’t care for.
    A few weeks ago I had to pick up a prescription for Linda at the doctor’s office. I had to park a few blocks away which is very unusual for our small town. On the way in I noticed that the cars were parallel parked and they were really jambed together and thought that someone in the middle is going to have a hard time getting out. After I got the prescription I was walking past the jambed up cars and I noticed this poor girl trying to get out of her parking space and even though I was in a bit of a hurry I decided to coach her out of her space. I think she was shocked that someone would take the time to help her.
    Part 2 was today when a lady came into the lumberyard to pick up over 320 3″x3″ blocks that we cut up for her for the Special Olympics. She called Saturday looking for a donation and I thought this was one that we could do. One of the guys at the yard has a grandson that goes to the Special Olympics every year and he loves it! I never met this lady before and I carried out the blocks to her car. It took 2 trips but before I picked up the 2nd load I pulled out a Kim and Jason business card and gave it to her and told her this was her lucky day. I just gave her an opportunity to get a K + J comic on her computer every day and maybe that would brighten her day!

  4. A co-worker and I both had a chocolate craving this afternoon, so I surprised her with a chocolate treat from the vending machine! We both enjoyed our “chocolate fix”!

  5. There is a daycare center up the street from where I live. They have a fenced in play area that borders the street. There always seems to be 4-7 playground balls on the street side of the fence. This is the farthest point from the entrance and I imagine someone has to walk out there every day to pick up those balls. So I stopped and chucked them over the fence tonight. Hopefully that will make someone’s day a bit easier tomorrow!

  6. Pingback: The Rodeo » Blog Archive » Help! (T.G.E. - Part 14 of 40)

  7. Today, I decided to write an encouraging note to the person who owned the car I parked next to at work today. I don’t know who owned the vehicle, but I wrote a note to Mr. Red Explorer telling him/her to have a great weekend; enjoy time with friends & family; laugh often & dance like no one is watching; may your life be blest & may you be a blessing to others. I hope this little note makes the driver smile & pass it along to someone else.

  8. Last week friends dropped me off at Starbucks while they went through the drivethru (to do errands and then meet me back at SB). I got inside before they got to the window, so I covered their coffee. The staff was flabbergasted (maybe they thought I was psychic because I knew that a venti latte was about to pull up?). Their reaction was so fun that the next time I was there, I left $ to cover a couple drivethru orders as I was on my way out. I know free coffee is nice, but the staff reaction is what really touched me both times. I’m certain there will be a ripple effect through them, and I may just have to make a habit of this.

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