Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Helpfulness Brings Happiness.

The most miserable people live in their own little worlds of isolation. They do very little for others and rarely have much fun.

I heard of one older gentleman who was considered by the townspeople to be both rich and thrifty. His austerity earned him the reputation of a miser. When he died, everyone expected the authorities to find money stashed everywhere in his home. All they found were a few gallon cans filled with coins.

It came out that he had used most of his money to help put needy young students through college. And the coins filled his pockets as he walked down the streets of the business districts looking for cars whose parking meters had expired. When he found one, he would drop in
a coin. One of his neighbors commented, "That explains why he looked so happy and contented!"

Of course! People who go out of their way to help others will always be happy.

When I lived in Denver, I decided to do the same thing. I always have more coins in my pockets than I need, so whenever I parked on a busy street I noticed the parking meters around me. If one was expired, I put in a coin.

Then I learned something disturbing. It is illegal to do that in Denver! (The government found a new way to take a bit of fun out of my life....) Once I learned that I was breaking the law, I quit looking for meters to feed. And I lost that extra bit of joy I used to receive every time I anonymously aided a fellow motorist.

I have moved away from Denver now and I just might go back to feeding an expired meter from time to time. I don't know how the city council feels about my little gifts to unsuspecting drivers, but I know how it feels to be unavoidably late returning to a parked car, and worrying
about whether the meter has run out. And if I have to look over my shoulder before I deposit a coin, then somehow I think that may be more fun! It can be a game: do something good and don't get caught!

Everyone is allowed to play.

From LifeSupport.

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