I work in a retail store up here in Washington. I usually work on the floor at nights, but since spring came and we’ve gotten pretty busy, I’ve been working a lot of midshifts on the register. Well, yesterday, while we were busy, this guy came in with his grandson.
Let me paint a picture for you. This guy has dreads. His clothes are plain, shabby, and worn out. He basically looks like a homeless guy. His little grandson is just so cute, and doesn’t look like he’s homeless.
Anyway, while I’m waiting on the customer in line before him, I hear this guy ask his grandson what his address was. His grandson replies. Then I hear him ask him what his phone number was. His grandson replies. Then I hear this guy say ‘Good job. Now don’t forget that. That’s very important stuff to remember.’ I was just plain shocked.
Then it’s their turn and I begin ringing them out. He hands his grandson the money to pay for his little toy. I take the money, make change, and give it to the little boy. The whole time this guy is telling him to say thank you and everything. I’m just floored at this point. Then he picks up the child and tells him to put his change in the little donation box on the card machine table to help out the little kids (that particular box is for a local children’s hospital).
I’ve seen this guy a few times before. He’s always nice and usually lets his grandson pay. But yesterday I really noticed just what he did.
He looks like he’s homeless and doesn’t have a penny to his name. And there he was, teaching his grandson to remember his address and phone number for emergencies and teaching him how to give and be polite. I have seen countless numbers of ‘perfect’ moms come through my line. Their clothing is brand and perfectly paired with accessories. Their nails, hair, and makeup are all impeccably done. They’re polite and don’t take up too much of my time. But they don’t pay attention to their kids. Or they are constantly yelling at them for the littlest things because (I’m assuming) they had a stressful day at work. Additionally, more often than not, if the kids are teens, I notice that they just have this snobby snotty look about them.
Just goes to show you that just because someone looks like the perfect model of what a certain set of people should be, doesn’t mean that that’s who they are. I’m happy that man took all that time to teach his grandson some of the smaller, yet very important, aspects of just living around other people.