Give away your 11.2 million dollars. No big deal.

I was clicking around the internet today, trying to find a story I saw on my local news about an artist living visibly to passers-by for one month (sounded interesting!), when I found a few really wonderful stories about generosity on MSNBC.

The first, a video clip about women helping other women a half world away through the organization Kiva.   Kiva has facilitated the micro-lending of millions of dollars to help others in more economically disadvantaged nations since its creation in 2004. Click here to see the video story. Click here to visit the foundation’s website.

The second awesome thing I found: an article about a couple that gave away nearly all of their lottery winnings–all 11.2 million dollars of it! Click here to read the story. Pretty amazing.

Have a great day!

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Amicable Allegory #7: Lost, found, returned

My last post, “500 bucks richer for a poor person is related to this post, except that this post is a more positive version of the subject!  (On a side note, thanks to Autumn for her comment requesting more positive entries. Though it is my aim to promote positivity, sometimes I go about addressing positivity by deliberating on how I can handle less positive interactions. Thank you Autumn for the reminder that all things are good–in balance. So, on with the positive!)

Yesterday, I was picking up some items at the mall conversing (as always) with the sales ladies about random things.  One of the women told me of a day when she found a wallet in a parking lot with a moderate amount of money in it. She Facebooked the guy and arranged to return it to him, she told me.  I was so impressed–and encouraged, especially after the $500 woman last week! I asked the sales lady then if the man had given her a reward or anything.  She said “No, but he was a student and I bet he didn’t have much to spare. — But the next week I was on campus and I found a 100 dollar bill on the ground!  I thought to myself–this is what good deeds get you!”  I have to say, I totally agree! Wouldn’t it be great if that happened to all of us! 🙂

Have you ever been so focused on what you’re going to do next that you don’t pay attention to what you’re doing at that moment?  My friend had gone grocery shopping one afternoon this summer and returned all the way home with her thoughts on the tasks awaiting her there when she realized she had left her purse in the cart in the parking lot!  In a panic she flew back to the supermarket, all-the-while thinking of what she had in her purse that could be stolen or misused.  She quickly walked to the customer service desk, anxiety growing in her mind. She budged in line (I imagine this was a pretty justifiable budge!) to ask after her purse and there it was, everything in tact!  She asked who had left it, but the worker said the woman had not left her information.  Thrilled, relieved, and grateful, my friend walked slowly back to her car wondering how she would ever thank the person for their kind deed.  That evening, she placed an ad in the local paper, saying simply, “To the kind woman who found my purse and returned it, thank you!” What I love about this story is that not only did someone do the right, kind thing, but my friend went out of her way to thank them for it, even when she did not know who it was!  Kind deeds become a little more special with a hardy “thank you!”

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice. (somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.

500 bucks richer for a poor person

At work the other day, I was conversing with a lady about her first bus-riding experience, of which she shared her very unusual experience.  Only she and a blind man were riding the bus at the time when she noticed a wallet under a seat close by. She picked it up, inspected it, and found $500 inside. After an astonished pause, I asked, “Did they have an address in there to mail it to?” She replied, “Well, I called all the numbers in the wallet but none of them were in service, so I mailed it back to the person.” She then cackled and said, “But I kept the 500 bucks! I mean, he should be grateful just to get his wallet back.”

She kept the money. She. Kept. The. Money. ICK! She was so proud of herself for her profit from someone else’s misfortune. How do you respond to that?  Being at work I couldn’t react with the disgust and revulsion I felt, so I neutrally stated how happy he would be to have his wallet back, since it can be such a pain to replace personal documents. But inside I just could not believe that this woman would be so proud of taking some poor guy’s $500 that she would share it enthusiastically with a complete stranger.  I mean, she was delighted with herself. She thought she was the luckiest, smartest gal in the land. She had no idea what I was really thinking. What most anyone would be thinking. It was despicable. It was cold and pathetic.

It is one thing to find a dollar on the street with no evident owner and keep it. It is a whole other ordeal to know who the owner is and to rip him off anyways.  This kind of story, to me, is a reminder of how truly sad someone can be when they are poor in morals, decency, and in spirit.  I almost pity the woman for thinking that stealing $500 is something to brag about. Pity her for a bad upbringing, or for giving in to bad influences.  But, then, how can I pity someone so selfish and so heartless? Even when I’m trying to be nice to people, there is no room for that. At that point, it was hard to be civil. What disappoints me is how nice I thought she was at first, but then upon knowing this tale, I realized that she is the type of person I would never want to befriend….  When I think on the experience, I can only resolve to never do anything of that sort, and to raise my family with decency so they know to do the right thing in those situations. I can’t control that woman, but I can control my behavior. And if I ever lose my wallet, I hope to God she doesn’t find it!

 

© Be Nice. Creator and Be Nice.(somethingsonice.wordpress.com), 2008-2009.