Quite Something

Posts Tagged ‘good news’

After You

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

Today we have a guest post by Cindy Brody, my longtime personal editor, who has a Good News story of her own to share.

Life’s like a movie. Write your own ending, keep believing, keep pretending.

— Kermit the Frog

I was at the post office on Friday, in the middle of a long, fidgety line of women—grandmothers, mothers, and daughters—with the requisite toddler throwing a tantrum in the back. It was during the countdown to Christmas, a set up for major stress.

A few people behind me, there was a frazzled young woman in a pink camo headscarf, which didn’t quite conceal her hair loss, likely from chemo. She told the already-vexed businesswoman in front of her she needed to run out to her car for a moment, something about a box in her trunk. The businesswoman said she would hold her place. But when the woman in the scarf came back, the businesswoman actually let her go in front of her.

The next thing you know, each person in that disgruntled line offered to let her go ahead of them, until she was first in line! After each person insisted, the next followed suit, and in the end, everyone was smiling.

It was such a brief incident, but I got to witness firsthand how kindness begets kindness, and how it can really transform us. It reminded me of a scene in A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa, where everyone breaks into song at the U.S. Post Office!

The woman in the scarf thanked everyone, holding back tears, saying it just meant a lot to her right then. I think it meant a lot to all of us, especially in this time of year, to have the opportunity to offer a small act of kindness.

The Good News channel

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

My daughter, who will be 23 in February, frequently says that she hates the evening news and the 24 hour news channels because the stories are always so negative. She asks why there isn’t a “good news channel.” As the traditional news, particularly the economic news, gets worse and worse, I keep thinking about my daughter’s question.

So, in an effort to follow Ghandi’s advice to “be the change I want to see in the world,” I’ve decided to launch my own good news channel of sorts. It occurs to me that, all around me, I see people doing extraordinary things in an effort to make a difference in the world, or at least to the people around them. And I know that these efforts are being repeated, day after day, all over the world. It’s just that the shocking stories grab the headlines, and we’re all guilty of head-turning when we see the “Breaking News” banner on the screen, knowing full well it will not be positive.

None of the people I’m about to introduce to you consider their good works heroic or extraordinary. Most just started out wanting to help, to give back in some way, and somewhere along the way they became passionate about their causes. They’re humble, grateful people whose stories are inspiring to me and, I hope, to you. When you read about their efforts, you may feel compelled to contribute. Or you might feel that you’re not doing enough, compared to them. But my purpose is not to solicit on their behalf or to shame you. We all contribute something, in our own way, and on our own time, and most of us do more than we realize. My aim is simply to shine a light on some positive stories, to try to balance our negative worldview, which is sadly skewed because of our overexposure to one side of the story.

I thought this holiday season would be a good time to expose the warmth and compassion of some ordinary people I know who consistently act out of love for others. The good news starts tomorrow. Join me.