On making people’s days

The other day, the family was out running errands. Mom and Dad had gone into the UPS store to deliver a package, and Riah and I sat in the car waiting for them. A truck pulled up next to us and we watched as the driver climbed out and began unloading packages. He was young, maybe nineteen or twenty, wearing blue plaid shorts and a white V-neck tee. But what really caught my eye was his hair; dyed white and stuck in messy spikes. I looked over at Riah. “He looks like an American KPopper,” I laughed.

“He does,” she agreed.

“When he comes back out, I’m going to tell him I like his hair.”

She looked sideways at me. “Uh…go ahead. Fine.” (She doesn’t quite get it when I talk to random strangers. I once went up and asked a guy going into Starbucks if he was a professor because she dared me without thinking I’d do it. Ah, good times).

So I cracked open the car door, waited until he walked back out to his car, and then I stood, looked over the top of the van and said “Hey, I really like your hair!”

He looked surprised for a minute, and then an adorable grin spread over his face. “Thank you! I dyed it this morning!”

“It looks really great.”

“Thank you,” he repeated, “I really appreciate it! I wanted to try something new.”

“You did a good job,” I said, giving him a thumbs-up.

His smile could have powered a small town. “I’m glad you think so!”

We exchanged grins and I climbed back into the car. Riah said nothing until Mom and Dad re-appeared, and then she blurted “Did you see the guy with the white hair?”

They said that they had.

“Mirriam told him she liked his hair.”

I was expecting maybe a playful groan, but to our shock Mom said “Wasn’t he adorable? He pulled it off so well!”

“You liked his hair?” I stared at the back of her head. This was highly unusual for my mother. So far she’s rejected blue hair, pink hair, yellow hair – but white hair?

“No,” said Dad.

“I did too,” Mom insisted. “He looked kind of surfer-boy. He pulled the look off.”

“He did, didn’t he?” I agreed, still in a little bit of shock.

“He looked like a doofus,” said Dad. (He’s not very shy about stating opinions. He’s also not very into wacky hair dyes).

Us girls clamored “He did NOT!” “He looked cute!”

“He was really friendly,” I said as we pulled out of the parking lot. “He’s one of those people that you see and want to be friends with.”

Dad disagreed, but for the rest of the day Mom, Riah and I continued to remark about how that guy had something about him. I don’t know what it was – it was a special something, and it was fun to be around, even if only for five minutes. His entire personality seemed to light up when I complimented his hair, and it made me realize.

I am SO blessed. Hardly a day goes by when somebody – through a blog comment, a Facebook message or post, an email – doesn’t make my day. All it takes is a few words and I’m a happy duck. In fact, whenever I receive something particularly nice, I save it in an email folder titled ‘Happy.’

So I thought, what if we all tried to make someone’s day every day this week? A family member, or somebody we see when we go out. It doesn’t take much effort, and it’s definitely worth it.

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37 thoughts on “On making people’s days

  1. He WAS adorable – you are right… I did want to sit down over a Starbuck’s (since we don’t have a suitable piazza here…) and get to know him.

    • Really? That’s so neat! It’s something I’ve thought about a lot over my life; when I was little and we went to restauraunts I made a point to say something nice to the waitresses. =D

  2. 😄 I sympathize with Riah. I’m always daring Evan to do things, thinking he wont, and then pleading with him to stop. 😄 I dared him to ask for diet water, to sneak into Sam’s Club with a Wal-Mart gift card, to have a ‘staring contest’ with a random stranger….And I hid my head, and pretended not to know him. Oh the Peter I am! 😄

    But, thus saying, at lot of times I see someone, and feel like complimenting them, and my shy nature takes over, and I let them pass. And then, I feel all guilty, wondering if I could’ve made their day brighter by saying their outfit was cute, I liked the way they styled their hair, or that I even noticed they cleaned that mess up in the isle off the store when they didn’t make it.

    I need to be braver, like you. ^.^

  3. What a coincidence! I was just thinking about this same topic. Something that I’ve found really neat about living on campus is that you get to see and meet so many new people in the space of a single day. But the downside of that is that people are so used to seeing so many people that they hardly see them as people anymore – they’re just an obstacle to walk around in the hallways and on the sidewalks. One thing I always do is smile at everybody I walk past (which, let me tell you, is hard on the cheeks), and it’s sad how few people smile back. I was starting to wonder if it was even worth it when I walked past this girl who just lit up and grinned at me like I was her long lost friend, and I had to smile back. So I’m gonna keep on smiling, because I never know when somebody might really need one.

    • Wow, so cool that this seemed to be something a lot of people were talking about!! Yeah, seeing that people are PEOPLE – a bundle of soul, stories, words and magic inside a body – is something that we weirdly forget sometimes. Good for you, taking the time to smile 🙂

  4. Amen to that, Miri! I LOVE talking to random people and asking them random things!!!! I’ve asked for diet water a couple times….. 😛 And I’ve done other wacky stuff and it’s fun! Making people smile is so wonderful! I also like complimenting on their clothes or hair. ^^

      • lol! It was my Mom’s birthday the other day, we went out and Mom ordered us water. I look up at the waitress and said, “You wouldn’t happen to have diet water, would you?” She looks at me, confused and says, “Diet water…?” I grin and she kinda snorts. “Huh… um, no.” 😄

  5. AWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish I could’ve told that Korean dude I saw walking the other day, how much…I liked…him… ::coughs:: yeah, anyway.
    American KPopper, eh?? So legit. I’m glad you took the time to tell this dude something!!! Next time you do, say YOUR FRIEND FROM OREGON likes his hair too!!!! 😉

    • YOU should have CLIMBED OUT OF THE CAR and asked to take a picture. Creepin’ like Nickhun. 😄 OKAY! The next time I’ll be sure and go “My friend from Oregon and I really like your hair” and he’ll say “Where’s your friend?” and I’ll say “She isn’t here, she’s in Oregon” and he’ll say “…….” 😄

    • He’ll have to be a very tall Korean/Asian. 😄 I think I know….maybe five Koreans who are taller than I am. I’ll probably end up marrying an American and he’ll put up with me watching Asian dramas and listening to Korean music. 😄

  6. 🙂 I saw a teenage boy once at Wal-mart, who was dressed kind of wacky, but in a good way. Black hat, gloves, coat, pants and boots, and a flaming red silk shirt. He couldn’t have been more than seventeen, and I really thought he looked cool. Like a spy or something. I was too shy to tell him how amazing I thought he looked, and I really wish I had. Rats… 🙂

  7. Wow, I haven’t commented here in FOREVER! Sorry, Mirriam! I’ve been reading your posts, just… haven’t been getting around to commenting… 😛 Love this little tidbit though, those people are the best! 😀

  8. Challenge accepted! Wow, just reading through the comments alone I can see that you really have a God-given gift for addressing issues that have been on peoples hearts and minds, without even realizing, it in your posts. I find that extremely awesome! And now I really want to see that guys hair…

    • *grins* You’ll have to let me know any interesting encouragement encounters!! ^.^ Aww, thank you! I find it pretty awesome, too 😀 I’m always surprised when people say “that’s what I needed to hear.” It’s always awesome. I WISH I COULD HAVE TAKEN A PICTURE! Yarrg! No camera, unfortunately. *sigh*

  9. I love this post. haha so glad I saw it and read it! Now you make me wonder… who’s day can I make? Hmm…
    Thank you so much for posting! You’re awesome. 😀 keep it up!

  10. Awesome… 😀 I’ve been learning recently how easy it is to start conversations – and yeah, making somebody’s else’s day always makes mine. 😄 Thank you for the timely reminder!! And also for making me laugh – that whole conversation just cracked me up. 😀

    LOL and all this talk about hair makes me want to go find a boy at college I’ve seen a couple times with orange hair and talk to him. I’m pretty sure he’s Korean (I’d have to talk to him to know for sure I guess :D). Though no way will I be brave enough to tell that every time I see him I feel like I’m in some KPop music video. 😄 😄 😄

    • Well, you’re welcome ^.^ It was a reminder to me, too. *laugh* ORANGE HAIR? A Korean boy with orange hair? Kath, if you don’t find him and talk to him I’ll hunt you down with an AK47 and MAKE you. 😄

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