Sunday, September 25, 2011

Old Man & Mrs Henry, Boots and Bicycle

I work at Walmart. I do other things too, but I work at Walmart. I see lots of people at Walmart. I meet lots of people. I see some pretty rotten things at Walmart and I see some beautiful things at Walmart.

The other day I saw something beautiful, something that brought back a memory from long ago.

When I was ten years old a friend gave me his newspaper delivery route. It wasn't a lot of money or a lot of time, but it was. Anyway, I grew up in a trailer park and my folks didn't really have a lot of money. We had plenty of food and we had clothes on our backs, but we didn't have too many extras.

So as winter came on that year I didn't have any winter boots to speak of, just my old bo-bo sneakers. We got some early snow that year  and Mrs Henry stopped me when I was delivering her paper and ask me when I was start putting my boots on. I just told her the truth, I didn't have any boots.
Well, the next day Old Mr Henry, (you know who he is, everybody had one in the neighborhood) caught me again when I brought his paper and he said to me, "Take this note to your folks and come back over here when you finish passing those papers." Oh man I knew I was in trouble. Old Man Henry sending a note to my folks. Funny thing is...I actually took the note to my folks. Times was different then I guess.
You know that note was to my folks asking them if they'd mind if he took my to the shoe store for a new pair boots. And so the story goes...
Well, the other day at Walmart I experienced something pretty cool. I was working in electronics and a young man probably about 13 years old came over asked for help with a bike. So we got the bike down and after I rang up the sale he gave me his money which was about $20 short, he did what most of us would do and kinda stammered and got a little embarrassed and ask if he could call his Dad. I handed him my cell and he called, but Dad didn't answer...about that time this other lady who'd been standing there, I thought she was his Momma or something came to the register and said she would cover the shortage. Well, the kid stood there kind of amazed and as we finished up the sale the boys Dad called back so I handed my phone over again and overheard the boy tell his Dad that "some lady" had already taken care of it. He didn't know her and she didn't know him, but both of them got a blessing from a stranger that day and so did I.
I hope that blessing is a memory that boy keeps forever.

Friday, September 23, 2011

I really am just a madman in a blue box.

The title of this post is  a quote from the Doctor Who episode titled, "The God Complex". It's a beautiful episode in which the Doctor finds himself having to deal with his own vanity in order to save himself and his friends from certain death.
I grew up in the 70s and 80s watching Doctor Who on PBS. Tom Baker was my Doctor and his adventures with Sarah Jane and Harry are far grander in my memory than they are now when I rewatch them. I have fond memories of those days and certainly I longed for as did so many others, a ridiculously long scarf with which to pretend to be the great Time Lord.
I have found the new Doctor Who adventures to be far more interesting because they delve into the pschology of this madman in a blue box. They seek to expose the underlying, hidden character nuances of the Last of the Time Lords.
I found that in The God Complex the good Doctor comes to realize just how much he really is like race of humans he so adores, in that he too feels the same need of self-affirmation that we do. He comes to see his need to be adored and  his own willingness to take great risks to be a hero so that others will adore him...and he realizes that all of it is indeed vanity....
Thank you to the BBC for giving us a program that makes us think.