Thought Starters

QOTW 2013: Week 22: Hey buddy, whattya got to give?

As Al Pachino said in the 1995 blockbuster Heat, “Gimme me all ya got!”

We are a self-interested bunch, aren’t we?

How about Pay It Forward? Where does that fit in?

How many times have you heard that saying in your life? Didn’t a  movie get made called Pay it Forward? Kevin Spacey, right?

It just seems so altruistic until it happens to you.


The thing that makes it so noticeable is that paying it forward doesn’t seem like a common occurrence. It seems to need to be deliberate or at least it does to me and I think it holds its relevance when someone does something for someone who is not a fixture in their life. Saying you pay it forward to a family member, to me, doesn’t count. It’s just something you naturally do.

But no matter who the recipient is, by definition, it is a truly selfless act.

Now, be honest with me (and yourself). No BS. When was the last time you really did something truly selfless? I am not talking about an obligation you have at work or the obligation you have with family and friends. Sorry, but that’s just not selfless. Think about the last time you randomly helped out someone just because you felt they needed it.

Don’t get me wrong here, I don’t run around looking for these opportunities so I can say I am better than anyone else. In fact, when pride comes into it, does it still fit the mould? I am really just asking because when it does happen the feeling you get is as close to happiness as I can describe. Would you agree?

Does a selfless act need to be epic to be considered?

I was travelling to Ottawa for the day a few weeks ago with Porter (a local airline here in Toronto, Canada). In the security line I started chatting with another weekday warrior simply because he had the same smartphone as me. Random, I know, but I really wanted to know what he thought of it and more importantly where he got the cover. You see, I have a Samsung Note (first Gen) and I have searched endlessly for a cover to no avail. Since the second Gen (or 3rd now) came out covers for the first Gen seem to have disappeared. So, I asked my neighbour where he bought his and he replied that he bought a few in China recently. I mentioned to him that I had a hard time finding one and had no luck so far. Obviously.

Out of the blue this guy asks me for a business card.

He says to me, “Give me your card and I will mail you one of my covers when I get back to town.”


Ok, I think. Sure.

So, I gave him my card and he simply said thanks and went on his way. I wasn’t sure where he was going because he disappeared in the airport lounge and that was it. I never saw him again and the exchange was so short that I didn’t get a chance to ask his name.

A few weeks later I got a call from reception because a package had arrived for me. At the time I thought nothing of it because I get stuff delivered all the time (samples and the like). There it was, a cover for my Samsung Note with a little note saying “Enjoy it.”

How cool is that?












There’s a website dedicated to those random acts of kindness. Check it out!


That brings us to today’s quote.


Catherine Ryan Hyde wrote or said (whatever) the following quote. She’s a writer with a few books to her credit. What’s amazing with this exercise is that I find these people who I would never be exposed to normally. She seems like such a genuine down-to-earth kind of person and I personally thank her for the following little tidbit.

If that doesn’t brighten your day then maybe this will.


A giant grasshopper hops into a bar and springs onto the counter. The bartender turns to him wondering how this giant Orthoptera got into his bar. He says to his new friend, “Hey, I have a drink named after you.” To which the oversized insect chimes back, “You have a drink named Herman?”


Have a great Monday and an awesome week.

If you want to read last week’s quote simply click here.






About this Author: Ralph Dopping (199 Posts)

A quirky sense-o-humour coupled with an indelible sense of stylish sarcasm makes it difficult to take the world too seriously doesn't it? My faves: fun, passion and hard work. I work here everyday:

BetsyKCross 1 Like

I really love when opportunities, seemingly random, present themselves like yours in the airport. I love the excitement of feeling like I've got a missing puzzle piece for someone - one that can either make a tiny or gigantic difference in someone's day. The significant part of the moment is the awareness of and connection to another human being that, like your "friend", is present for that moment alone. Sort of gives us a chance to se where we are in our attitudes. You know? Are we open to giving and receiving? To serving, collaborating, or just noticing a need and seeing if we have anything to offer..... love it, Ralph!

rdopping moderator

 @BetsyKCross Random makes it, doesn't it? So does the surprise. Frankly, I wasn't expecting anything. What does that say about me? I wonder.