On 30 May 2014, Redditor visualoptimism asked, “What random acts of kindness, or pay-it-forward actions, have you done yourself or witnessed lately?” Here are some replies (lightly edited):
• strikeuhpose wrote, “Last Christmas  my brother found a jar on his porch full of cash, gift cards, change and a note. The note explained how this person would save their extra cash and change all year and put it in a jar to give to someone at Christmas time. It was the sweetest thing ever, and my brother really needed the money because of things that had come up right before Christmas. He has two small boys and was worried about being able to give them an awesome Christmas and that jar fixed everything! It makes me cry again just thinking about it! He’s been saving his extra cash/change and is going to do the same thing to another family during Christmas time this year!
• MadtownMaven write, “Two weekends ago I heard my neighbors (well, the neighbor of the house across the street from mine) dog get hit by a car. I ran to help, but the guy was carrying the dog running to his house to take it to the vet. That afternoon I left a vase with flowers from my garden, a rawhide chew, and a card hoping their pup a speedy recovery on their doorstep. I’d never met them before, [but] I know I’d feel horrible is my dog got hit and hurt. A few days later they dropped off a thankyou card and their dog is recovering nicely. They are a deaf couple so it was kind of hard to communicate, but now we wave whenever we’re out walking our pups.
“Whenever I take the tollway to Illinois, if it’s a car behind me at the toll, I’ll pay theirs as well. I generally only do this at the toll around Rockford, not the Chicago ones because they are every mile it seems.
“About three weeks ago, there was a 20k race that goes past about a block from my house. I didn’t know anyone in the race and it’s not a huge one, but I went and set up my lawn chair and cheered for the people running for an hour or two. I stayed and cheered on until I couldn’t see anymore walkers heading my way. A lot of the people thanked me, ’cause it’s not typical to have crowd support at smaller races, but I could see a lot of them picking up their pace and smiling. When they were at about 17k of a 20k race, I count that as a win.”
• justsomemammal wrote, “A few months ago some lady in a white SUV paid for my Starbucks at the drive through. It was such a small thing, but I bet I’ll never forget it.
“When I lived in the bay area and had a little extra cash, I occasionally paid for the bridge toll for the person behind me.
“And it seems like it counts less to do random acts of kindness for people you know as opposed to strangers, but a couple times a year I’ll see something a friend would like and send them a surprise gift. A few weeks ago I sent a robot-shaped tea infuser to a friend who’s a tea enthusiast and who I have a running joke about robots with. A few months ago I sent a dress to a friend who found the perfect dress to wear to a wedding but they didn’t have it in her size — I managed to snag the right size and sent it to her as a surprise.”
For More Information: visualoptimism, “What random acts of kindness, or pay-it-forward actions, have you done yourself or witnessed lately?” Reddit. 30 May 2014
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