Wednesday, October 24, 2007

free rice

kinda cool. makes me feel real dumb though.

free rice!

Monday, October 15, 2007


Today I was reminded of how short I really do fall.

I was driving through a parking structure here in Santa Monica and a well dressed foreign man with a slight accent stopped me. Highly apologetic he asked for some money while holding car keys and looking rather lost. He said something about "not enough gas" "I'm stuck" "can you help?" Of course I could help I said. I smiled as I reached into my wallet and gave the man the four dollars I had left in my wallet. I was all I had but I figured it could get him out of the parking structure and to a gas station. Either way, it was all I had. He asked if I was sure and thanked me deeply with a smile. As I drove away happy I've been of help to someone in need, I remember the woman I walked by this morning. She was leaning against a newspaper vending machine with a Starbucks cup in hand and a dirty wrinkled cardboard sign. She wasn't as well dressed as my foreign parking structure friend nor did she smell as good. As I walked by she kinda wiggled her cup at me and I smiled back at her. I didn't give her anything but a good morning smile. Now here's the problem. Why was I generous to a man who's more nicely dressed and asks more politely, and probably has a bunch of money? Why couldn't I have give the four dollars to the woman this morning? Why is it that even when I do give money away it's not in increments of four dollars but maybe one or some spare change? Why don't I always give everything I have instead of only giving away enough to not feel the effects of the sacrifice?

I'm bothered that when I start to think I'm generous, I'm reminded of how short I fall and how insignificant even those four dollars are in the grand scheme. I'm bothered that I have way too much crap that isn't getting used. I'm bothered that I let myself believe that this life is supposed to be comfortable and painless. I'm bothered. I'm bothered that I rarely feel the pain of sacrifice. This week, I'll make sure that I do.