Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Anyone for Dessert?
I was in meetings for most of today and didn't easily see an obvious opportunity for a good kindness act so I decided that I would use my dinner time at a restaurant to do something I had read once in a list of kindness suggestions. Here's what happened:
My plan was to randomly pick out someone in the restaurant and have a dessert anonymously delivered to their table when they finished their main course. After surveying the dining room, I chose a particular young couple that looked to me like they may have been enjoying a rare night out (perhaps even having gotten a babysitter?). I told my waitress that I had a "strange" request for her, and explained that I wanted her to pick out a dessert that she would recommend, put it on my bill, and deliver it to the couple, but that she had to keep it anonymous.
The waitress kept an eye on them and at the right moment delivered the dessert. Though I was admittedly curious to know their reaction, I couldn't see them and was determined to keep it anonymous. As I was paying my bill though, I did ask my waitress if they seemed surprised. She said "They didn't even ask me!". I won't even try to interpret that . . .
So far in these first two weeks I've done a variety of things big and small, for total strangers, and for people I know, some anonymous, and some not. Anonymous things are fun for the sheer imagination of how people might respond to totally unexpected, seemingly random kindness. On the other hand, it's also fun to create more of a "direct connection" with someone by doing something clear and obvious for them, albeit unexpected. That being said, I've resisted, and will continue to resist, the inclination to judge or evaluate what kinds of acts are best. I simply figure any extra kindness I can spread is a little more than existed in the world before.