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The kindest thing anyone's ever done for you?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by forever_town, Apr 30, 2010.

  1. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    Without revealing the specifics of the inspiration to keep from the judging eyes of SportsJournalists.com, I was inspired to ask SportsJournalists.commers to tell what the kindest thing anyone's ever done to each of you?

    Was there one person's deed that stands out and still makes you shake your head in wonder even years after the fact?

    For me, I've mentioned it rather frequently, but the one I keep coming back to as the kindest thing anyone's ever done for me is a former employee basically taking over my job while I was recovering from cancer surgery, even though it was just a few days after he'd turned in his two-weeks notice.

    One of the things I was worrying about was how I was going to get that week's paper put to bed since I thought I'd be out for several days, if not a couple of weeks. He asked me what my plans were, and I told him what my thoughts were. He then said, "I'll do it."

    I was hesitant to put that on him since that week was slated to be his last week at the paper, but he told me something that I knew I couldn't argue with: "Don't feel like you have to be involved with every aspect of the paper." At that point, I let him take over. I felt good about it because I was confident he would do a great job with it, and he did.

    Even more, however, I remember thinking that spoke volumes about the kind of person he is.
  2. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    From a work standpoint:

    I was 22 and had just been placed on the MLB beat because we had a couple people quit right before the season and I went from being a prep writer to one of the main guys on the beat almost overnight, when I was supposed to just be the backup.

    It was the first spring training game and much to my dismay it was a late game and I was going to have to file very quickly. I had one of those Trash-80 computers and it usually took me 2-3 tries to file most stories even when I wasn't on deadline. Most of the time I would have a little help from the other beat writer, but for this game I was on my own because the other baseball writer had flown home for family reasons.

    I filed a test when I got to the game and it worked. My assigning editor called me and asked me to file a notebook early. When I tried to file, I couldn't. It didn't work. I tried over and over again and it wouldn't work. To say I was panicking would be a colossal understatement.

    My editor said, I'm going to have you call me at a different extension. I had no idea why.

    I dictated the notebook to him. I dictated the gamer to him.

    I was sure I was getting fired or pulled from the beat the next day.

    My SE called me the next day and said, "Nice work on the gamer. I was a little worried about your first time on deadline, but it read nicely."

    What I found out later was that when I was having trouble filing, my assigning editor told the rest of the staff HE was having computer problems and went to another section. Nobody else there knew I was having any problems and he told nobody about it.

    He said he'd gone through an identical situation when he was a newbie and it set his writing career back by a year or two because they didn't trust him to file on deadline. He didn't want me to have to go through something similar.

    The next day, I spent an hour on the phone with IT and to say I became an expert at filing would have been an understatement.

    When I got home, I bought two bottles of very whiskey for the editor in question.
  3. Michael_ Gee

    Michael_ Gee Well-Known Member

    This may not be the very nicest, but it rates a mention due to its assault on stereotyping. In the summer of 1984, Alice was five months pregnant with our first child, and we went to France for two weeks on the theory it was our last chance to have disposable income for the foreseeable future (theory correct).
    We had a rental car, and parked in a municipal garage in the outskirts of Paris near our hotel after dinner on a Saturday night (no parking at older hotel). Return to garage on Sunday, it's locked for the day and we're leaving. Local woman resident walks by and notices two Americans freaking out, one pregnant. Without a word, she used her resident's monthly pass to open the garage door and allow us in.
    This is Paris, supposedly the home of the snottiest people on earth who make us big city Northeasterners look like the residents of Mayberry in the friendliness department.
    One of the words of French I do know is "Merci."
  4. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    I always call this my "Highway to Heaven" moment:

    My first son was a couple of months old, and I had to take him with me to the laundromat. Needless to say, it wasn't fun schlepping a couple baskets of laundry, along with a baby who was a terrible napper, but had somehow managed to fall asleep on the ride to the place.

    So I get there and at that point, I'm in a quandary, especially as a new dad who's very tired from working the late shift and is on a few hours sleep. Do I bring the baby in to the place first, or the laundry (winter time, so overheating in a car wasn't that big a concern). Finally, I bring in the laundry, come back, and put the baby in his stroller and go in.

    Baby's still sleeping as I start the loads. Just as I'm looking forward to some quiet time with a magazine, he wakes up. I'm thinking, Oh, great.

    However, there were three elderly people there, a man and two women. They hear him wake up, and they come over, and start talking to him. I begin chatting with them as well. They start telling me, "You're a good dad. We can see that by how he looks at you, he knows you're his father." They go on about how there are so many kids who don't have good dads, and how lucky my son is that he has me.

    Needless to say, as a tired guy who's not feeling too confident as a first-time dad, those words meant a lot to me. The old guy decides to go out and get some coffee for him and the ladies, and offers to buy me a cup, too. After my laundry's done, the women help me fold it and pack it up, then they help bring it to my car as I buckle my son in his car seat.

    I thank them, and say goodbye. I start driving, and a couple of miles down the road, I realize that I had left my detergent at the place. So I turn around and go back. Found my detergent, and there was no one else at the place.

    Yeah, they might have left in the couple of minutes that I was gone. But part of me likes to think that they were angels and their assignment was to help me out for a little while and give me a bit of an emotional boost.
  5. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    That's awesome.
  6. blacktitleist

    blacktitleist Member

    First big-boy job out of college was working for the local YMCA as the Sports and Teen Programs director. Loved the job, but decided to move on to bigger and better things after nearly seven years.

    On my last day there, the housekeeping staff, front desk staff, and a handful of the teenagers in one of my very favorite programs in my charge asked for me to meet them in one of the rooms in our building before I left.

    (back story, I usually had pizza and wings delivered for the desk staff and housekeeping staff when it was my turn for lockup duty at the branch, which happened every two weeks or so, just to show my appreciation for their thankless duties.)

    I ventured over when they told me to, thinking I would just say my goodbyes and thank you's and get well wishes.

    Was floored when I walked in and these folks sprung for a catered meal from a popular local establishment for a going away party.

    Keep in mind, most of the folks made minimum wage with their jobs there. The teenagers didn't even work yet.

    At the end of the dinner, one of the employees stood up and began crying while she presented me with a gift certificate to the local golf store for $62.48.

    I will never forget that number. Meant more to me than anything else. Still does. Pretty touching sentiment.
  7. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    That's awesome too. I love this thread. :)
  8. Lugnuts

    Lugnuts Well-Known Member

    Oh my gosh, this thread about has me in tears.

    I'm sitting here trying to think of the nicest things ever done for me, and the Top 5 were all done by Mr. Lugs. There's one biggy in particular that changed my life forever. Everybody should be so lucky as to have a Mr. Lugs.
  9. HandsomeHarley

    HandsomeHarley Well-Known Member

    Several members of this board got together and gave my kids a nice Christmas a few years ago when I was unemployed.

    No matter how hostile it gets here sometimes, I always think back to that time. I'll never forget it.
  10. CentralIllinoisan

    CentralIllinoisan Active Member

    So, so awesome.
  11. CentralIllinoisan

    CentralIllinoisan Active Member

    May of 1998, my last semester in junior college. After working way too many hours at the newspaper office in attempt to get out the final issue, I was driving home.

    Halfway, I fell asleep at the wheel, veered into oncoming traffic and off the other side of the road and into an embankment.

    I badly broke my right leg and was hospitalized for the next few days -- though the publication deadline of our tri-weekly newspaper.

    Not only did my staff step up, girlfriends and other non-newspaper people at the school offered their services to write, layout and do all the things I usually did in the waning days.

    They brought me the finished product, in my hospital bed, and I wept like a proud dad looking at a child's art work.

    It stays with me to this day, and is something I draw upon when I worry about delegating responsibility. Trust your co-workers; they just might surprise you.
  12. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    We may be assholes but we're assholes with good hearts.

    As for me - simple: Said, "I do."
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