General Question

Hambayuti's avatar

What's the kindest thing you've recently done for a stranger?

Asked by Hambayuti (1380points) June 30th, 2009
22 responses
“Great Question” (6points)

Strangers may have helped you out sometime in your life, whether you know it or not. Have you given back your share of kindness to the world?

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Wine3213's avatar

I helped a woman find her grandfather (who is suffering from Dementia). It took about an hour, but we finally found him.

YARNLADY's avatar

I have helped many people find the answers they need on the Q & A sites I participate in.

Darwin's avatar

Most recently I held doors open for complete strangers today. I do it routinely just because I can. I also thank servers anytime they bring something to the table.

But on a more detailed note, our church decided to have a day to do things for the community, so I was one of a group who went to the Children’s Advocacy Center this past Sunday and trimmed hedges, repaired picnic tables and bits of the building, and hauled all the trimmings and trash away.

And it was 97 degrees that day.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I recently helped raise $500+ for the women’s center where I take karate.

desiree333's avatar

this is a nice question, but if somebody does something really nice/kind, isn’t it being kind of hypicritical by telling people about it, like kind of boasting?

YARNLADY's avatar

@desiree333 answering a question about our good deeds is not boasting – it’s more like affirming there is still a lot of good in this world.

Jeruba's avatar

I agree with desiree333, not that it’s hypocritical but that it seems inappropriate to me. Just speaking for myself here, I feel that it’s unseemly to report on your kind and charitable acts. I never tell anyone because to me that does take something away from it. It would seem like asking for praise or approval instead of just letting the act be what it is, whatever it is.

rooeytoo's avatar

12 Step Programs have a list called Just For Today with 9 different exercises for each day of your life. One of them says

“JUST FOR TODAY I will exercise my soul in three ways: I will do somebody a good turn, and not get found out; if anybody knows of it, it will not count…............”

So I’m with Jeruba and desiree333. I personally am a hell of a nice person, and do charitable acts all but time, but I’m not gonna tell you about it!

YARNLADY's avatar

@desiree333 @Jeruba @rooeytoo When did it become OK to insult a new member for asking a reasonable question? If you don’t want to answer – move on to the next question.

Hambayuti's avatar

@desiree333, @Jeruba, @rooeytoo – I totally respect your point of views and understand if you don’t want to answer.

@YARNLADY – Thanks.

I had posted this question while I was at home today. On my way to work, I saw the newspaper delivery guy entering the same building where I work in. He was about to enter a heavy glass door with loads of newspaper on his hands (and some he still needed to pick); I’ve decided to held the door open for him. And when you live in the Middle East, like me, this practice might seem strange to others, still I indulged. So, anyway, he walked ahead of me to the elevator and got in. I told him to please hold the lift as I needed to use it as well…but he did not. Sigh.


Moral lesson: When coming to work late for a meeting and you decide to go out of your way to help a newspaper delivery guy, make sure you walk ahead of him after doing the good deed.


NaturalMineralWater's avatar

Not telling. =)

mzgator's avatar

On vacation in Hawaii, an elderly woman walked onto our lanai. She was completely lost. I helped her find her way down a cliff and onto the grounds her hotel. In conversation, she told me her son had brought her there as a Mothers Day present and he was out for the day deep sea fishing. She ws all alone and did not know where her room was in the resort. I got her key and walked her into the lobby. After talking with her more, I realized something was not right, and I found a manager. She was taken to a hospital. I thought she may have had a stroke or something. That afternoon I spoke to the manager who said she had spoken to the son. The lady had alzheimers, and he had locked her in the room and thought she would be ok for a few hours. She had hiked up a cliff into a neighboring resort. How she did this I will never know. I don’t know what would have happened to her had I not helped.

Bri_L's avatar

@desiree333, @Jeruba, @rooeytoo – While I agree that seeking out others to advertise your efforts is boastful, I feel that this question is different and should be viewed as such for several reasons.

One, it affirms that their are good people in the world doing good things. With so much negative news and complaining I think it is nice to sit and read about the great things people do. I feel a little cheated that you don’t share one of yours.

How do we know that the act or efforts you are withholding wouldn’t be an inspiration to others to do the same. Something the maybe didn’t think of.

Some one asked you. And the people that read them are doing so by choice. I see nothing excessively prideful about this.

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

I can only weigh from my point of view as the giver but here it goes: a very rude gate checker on a plane tried to badger an elderly woman that her carry on was too big to go on the plane and would have to be officially cargo checked at an additional fee, of course. I saw the bag fit within the dimensions of the stand up guide placard and told the gate checker to give a jetway tag instead and not charge the passenger. She scowled at me but did it. Many commuter planes don’t have the storage above the seats to accommodate even the allowed sized carry ons so the airlines take the bags on the jetway, store them below and then give them back as you de-plane, no charge.

Jeruba's avatar

Very strange that some people should regard modesty as insulting. I did not offer any criticism of the question.

Of course there are good people in the world doing good things, and I don’t believe that any of us sincerely doubts that. I think all it really takes is being aware enough of others to perceive a need, recognizing that you have the means to help meet the need, and having the willingness of heart to perform the act. Usually it involves sacrifice of some kind, whether it be time, money, attention, or something else. Maybe it’s sending $400 to a stranger who can’t make her rent. Maybe it’s giving the cold Coke you just bought to a bell-ringer standing outside the store. But there is no need to count the cost. It is enough to know that the benefit to someone else outweighs giving something up. I think we should look to ourselves for inspiration and not to others.

rooeytoo's avatar

@YARNLADY – I didn’t insult anyone, I politely offered a divergent point of view.

@Bri L – I didn’t say it was prideful or incorrect or anything, I simply offered a divergent point of view.

And the bit about me being a wonderful person was completely tongue in cheek. I usually compliment myself for my advance level of bitchdom, not that the 2 are mutually exclusive!

Bri_L's avatar

@Jeruba – I am not sure if your implying that, by my response, I regard modesty as insulting. I can’t find that implication in there. Quite the contrary, I feel it is an amiable trait. A lost art form even.

And no, You didn’t offer any criticism of the question but you did make a statement about it by actively denouncing anything that would constitute and answer to it.

As far as looking to ourselves for inspiration and not to others. I think that we should look to ourselves, but I don’t see anything wrong with looking to others as well. Don’t you and I both, in fact, participate in an ongoing thread that is based on the idea of accountability and support?

I was really looking forward to all the great stories of people helping people. How weak I must be for wanting and, yes, even needing that type of affirmation.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Bri_L there’s nothing weak about it, the ones who don’t want to answer this question are not justified in berating the ones who do find pleasure in sharing a good thing

Jeruba's avatar

“Berating”? “Denouncing”? My goodness, friends, I am surprised. (@Bri_L, no, it wasn’t you who accused me of being insulting.) I thought I clearly expressed my view as a matter of personal practice and explained why. It was my obviously mistaken belief that this question might not get many answers for the reason that desiree333 gave, and so I was offering an explanation from my personal point of view. But never mind, clearly there’s no place for these thoughts here.

tiffyandthewall's avatar

i think the idea that a kind deed can be undone by being found out is absolutely absurd. i can’t think of anything overly kind i’ve done lately – i haven’t even been out that much lately – but answering a question and bragging are two different things. it’s not like anyone who’s posting here performed a good deed, thinking “MAN, i sure can’t wait to post this on fluther, so everyone will GA me a hundred times! being good sure pays off!”. what a ridiculous thing to imply.

i’m hoping this question gets back on track and folks start posting their kind actions, instead of everyone condemning those who performed good deeds with good intentions just because they answer this question honestly.

Da_Wolfman's avatar

Too much to list OR is that bragging?

Darwin's avatar

An interesting good deed came to light yesterday. A church member who loves to bake bread has started a new business called “Fed by Bread.” She will deliver freshly baked bread on Mondays to subscribers. In turn she will use the payments to buy supplies to bake more loaves, but any excess goes to projects such as, the Heifer Project, Living Water International, and other charities that help people pull themselves out of dire poverty.

I hope she succeeds (and I am awaiting the arrival of my bread any time now).

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