Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Maybe we all would be a little better if we turned to our fellow human being.

This morning, I was standing on a very crowded 4 or 5 train coming to work in Brooklyn, reading advertisements and zoning out really. I had noticed the guy sitting in front of me fiddling with his phone, but I didn't pay much attention to him or what he was doing. After a few minutes, he spoke up to the girl sitting next to him, asking if she knew why his text message only allowed him to type so many characters or words or something. And then he told her about a problem that he had with his phone over the weekend. But the most interesting thing about this observation was that I honestly felt that he was being completely honest and sincere with his question and explanation; it appeared that he had no ulterior motive. I felt like he truly needed her help and assistant; he was simply curious. The girl hesitantly smiled, but she must have felt the same way because she did engage him and attempt to help him figure out the problem. And the mood was so comfortable in that moment because the girl sitting next to her chimed in and joined the conversation. Once the interaction was established, I felt myself smiling and wanting to join the activity. The positive energy in that car was contagious for a select group of people, and I observed humanity at its best this morning, and it felt good for a change. It's too bad that there were others around us, who ended up getting off at the Wall Street exit, that rolled their eyes in disgust because one human being decided to express himself and turn to his fellow human being. Reactions are a good way to determine the good from the bad...

The guy eventually went about his business, but before he got too far away from the situation, he said, "I'm getting off at the next stop, but you ladies have a nice day." They thanked him and wished him the same. Maybe we all would be a little better if we turned to our fellow human being. Is it possible to create a healthier society by asking our neighbor a simple question and for a little help?

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