Wednesday, May 30, 2007


small acts of kindness get overlooked all the time. holding a door open for a stranger. giving the right of way on the open road. sacrificing a seat on a crowded train. even if the act wasn't warranted or even necessary, it should be acknowledged with appreciation. too often, too many people habitually refuse to say a simple "thank you". people have their reasons. the proudly self-sufficient. the militant feminist. the cell phone conversaters. no one has to be nice. its one of the great things about this country. some folks just have it in their heart.

gratitude can make a difference to those people who choose to go above and beyond. a "thanks" from you does a lot to perpetuate the boy scout behavior. a snub could send your samaritan on a steep downward spiral to crack whoredom. that's a lot of weight for a conscience to bear.

so here's where i get confused. most roads are free to all. in fact, if all our roads and bridges were tossed in a giant sack, a very small percentage demand a toll for their use. maybe a fraction of a percent. in the occasion when one uses one of these roads or bridges, one most pass through a toll booth and fork out some cash for being allowed the privilege of passing through. most roads and bridges ask for neither our money or our time, but when any of us is required to pay up, we kindly thank mr. or mrs. toll booth collector. i've never known anyone not to say thanks.

their job is to sit on a stool and take money from motorists and dispense change. its a lousy job, but also an incredibly easy one. the occupation will likely be extinct before long. change catching baskets and EZ pass sensors are equally qualified and don't require a 401k plan. i never seen anyone make an extra effort to make my toll paying more enjoyable. i don't understand how this became worthy of automatic gratitude while so many others receive turned cheeks.

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