as i try to keep up my new year's 'be kinder' resolution, issues, questions and some answers come from unexpected places. a friend commented that just passing out money isn't really kindness. i was a bit offended. i thought about getting hank to settle things. but a buffalo won't stoop to throwing his weight around.

so i considered it and realized that's true. money helps, but it's a deflection, a way of not dealing with another person. 

i still give out change. but i ask how are you? what are you going to do with it? i look this other human in the eye and talk to them. for a few moments. some are too shocked. they leave without a quarter. 

but there's one fellow who buzzes over to me because he needs a buck fifty for some macdonalds. he tells me what the special is today and how they don't let him in the mall and where he sleeps at night. 

i'm not rich and we're not friends. but i can live without 150 pennies and the 10 minutes spent talking to this man. 

who and why to be kinder? to everyone, because it's a better thing to do. but i think some people who deserve a unique kindness, a kindness that's much harder to give. 

dignity. humanity. attention. 

this short film, co-directed by tara flynn from vancouver, who i'm fortunate to know, shines a light on the photos from gabor gasztonyi's book 'a room in the city.' about people who live in worn out hotels in vancouver's downtown east side. powerful, insightful and compassionate, take 3 minutes to watch and listen. it's time well spent.


Tara Flynn
02/01/2012 9:36pm

Your support and attention to the needs of others is very kind Terry, as are your words and considerations. I agree that the kindest thing we can do for someone is to see all they are worth, even if they don't.


Leave a Reply.