Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Saturday, May 16, 2009
One day a man saw an old lady, stranded on the side of the road, but
even in the dim light of day, he could see she needed help. So he pulled
up in front of her Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still
sputtering when he approached her.
Even with the smile on his face, she was worried. No one had stopped to
help for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He didn't look
safe; he looked poor and hungry.
He could see that she was frightened, standing out there in the cold. He
knew how she felt. It was that chill which only fear can put in you.
He said, 'I'm here to help you, ma'am. Why don't you wait in the car
where it's warm? By the way, my name is Bryan Anderson.'
Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady, that was bad
enough. Bryan crawled under the car looking for a place to put the jack,
skinning his knuckles a time or two. Soon he was able to change the
tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands hurt.
As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down the window and
began to talk to him. She told him that she was from St. Louis and was
only just passing through. She couldn't thank him enough for coming to
Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk. The lady asked how much she
owed him. Any amount would have been all right with her. She already
imagined all the awful things that could have happened had he not
stopped. Bryan never thought twice about being paid. This was not a job
to him. This was helping someone in need, and God knows there were
plenty, who had given him a hand in the past. He had lived his whole
life that way, and it never occurred to him to act any other way.
He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back, the next time she
saw someone who needed help, she could give that person the assistance
they needed, and Bryan added, 'And think of me.'
He waited until she started her car and drove off. It had been a cold
and depressing day, but he felt good as he headed for home, disappearing
into the twilight.
A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe. She went in to grab
a bite to eat, and take the chill off before she made the last leg of
her trip home. It was a dingy looking restaurant. Outside were two old
gas pumps. The whole scene was unfamiliar to her. The waitress came over
and brought a clean towel to wipe her wet hair. She had a sweet smile,
one that even being on her feet for the whole day couldn't erase. The
lady noticed the waitress was nearly eight months pregnant, but she
never let the strain and aches change her attitude. The old lady
wondered how someone who had so little could be so giving to a stranger.
Then she remembered Bryan .
After the lady finished her meal, she paid with a hundred dollar bill.
The waitress quickly went to get change for her hundred dollar bill, but
the old lady had slipped right out the door. She was gone by the time
the waitress came back. The waitress wondered where the lady could be.
Then she noticed something written on the napkin.
There were tears in her eyes when she read what the lady wrote: 'You
don't owe me anything. I have been there too. Somebody once helped me
out, the way I'm helping you. If you really want to pay me back, here
is what you do: Do not let this chain of love end with you.'
Under the napkin were four more $100 bills.
Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill, and people to
serve, but the waitress made it through another day. That night when she
got home from work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about the
money and what the lady had written. How could the lady have known how
much she and her husband needed it? With the baby due next month, it was
going to be hard.
She knew how worried her husband was, and as he lay sleeping next to
her, she gave him a soft kiss and whispered soft and low, 'Everything's
going to be all right. I love you, Bryan Anderson.'
There is an old saying 'What goes around comes around.' Today I sent you
this story, and I'm asking you to pass it on. Let this light shine.
Good friends are like stars....You don't always see them, but you know
they are always there.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
The ugliest thing
By Sarah Liliana Z. Sarmiento
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:17:00 05/07/2009
Filed Under: Family, Youth
I think the ugliest thing about having a sister around is she being a lot prettier than you. You know because when she is around, boys are whistling and calling out to her. Without her, all you would hear is the chirping of crickets even if you take off your top amid a swarm of teenage boys with raging hormones.
Thankfully, I am the more beautiful baby girl in the family (and being that, I do not know how it feels not to be whistled at by the guys).
Seriously now, the ugliest thing about having a sister around is this:
On the second day of the year 2009, I had a terrible, terrible tantrum. After watching “Enteng Kabisote” ages ago, I had vowed never to watch a Filipino movie ever again. But that promise had to be broken because our uncle wanted to treat us to a movie as his 2008 Christmas gift, and other than Metro Manila Film Festival movies, our country does not get anything American or European in December and January (forgive me for being racist).
Even before Tito came to pick us up, my four siblings and I talked about saving the treat for a better movie, like “7 Pounds” or “17 Again” or “Changeling.” I thought that was the plan, until I found myself death-marching to the train station to Gateway, ignoring Tito, not even thanking him for the Kobe Bryant jersey he gave me, and most of all, hating my sister because she did not stick to the supposed plan.
After the movie, we had to do some errands for our parents, so Tito went home ahead of us. He must have felt my nastiness and spite and could not take it anymore.
After he left, being the very, very frank sister that I am, I pointed out the tears welling up in the sides of my sister’s eyes, her nose turning red at the tip every time she would feel awful. And being the always, always right sister that she is, she pointed out my bratty performance, and burst into tears right then and there amid the beautiful people of Gateway. Of course, the smaller sisters had nothing to say, and our brother Storm missed this encounter.
And now, for the best part. We entered Fully Booked, which to me is the place where all good things happen, my own heaven on earth. After 30 long and quiet minutes of getting lost in between rows and shelves of books, my sister suddenly appeared out of nowhere, handed me a plastic bag and walked away.
Imagine how I must have looked when I opened the bag, and found in my hands “Lovely Bones” and “Me Talk Pretty One Day.” When I asked her (of course, I had to pretend to be a little reluctant and hesitant) who they were for, she said: “Sa iyo. Naiinis kasi ako sa iyo kaya kita binilhan (They are for you. I just felt so irritated by you and that’s why I bought them).”
With so many thoughts running in my head (“She’s guilt-tripping me but it’s working!” “Should I get her a book too?” “Should I text Tito and say sorry?” “I have a Sedaris book!”), I managed to buy her and the small ones Dairy Queen and Taco Bell (because I am awfully cheap), and we kissed and hugged and (insert all the sisterly cheesiness here) amid the beautiful people of Gateway.
The point I am trying to make here is: get into a fight with my sister because she gives the best peace offerings in the world.
More seriously now, love your sisters and brothers because, in the end, no matter how bratty you might be, or how lost to this world you might seem to be, you can always and forever come home to them.
One final thought: I think my sister is the most beautiful person in the world, inside and out. Forget that stuff about having her around being the ugliest thing, it is this—her seeing good in every single person—which I love most about her. Life without her would be a mistake.
(Sarah Liliana Z. Sarmiento, 18, is an incoming third year BFA Creative Writing student at the Ateneo de Manila University.)
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
From: KerygmaFamily <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Monday, May 4, 2009 9:31:22 AM
Subject: choi, God's Message For You Today, May 5, 2009
God has a great plan for your life?including this Tuesday.
Watch Bo Read To You Today's Reading and Reflection in
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