Today, I was walking down Beverly Drive, on my way to get lunch. As usual, I was trying to skip past the panhandlers without them appealing directly to me. Yes, we have panhandlers in Beverly Hills, but only on the block where my office is: north of Wilshire, the BHPD keeps the streets clean. In the SoBev business district though, there’s fewer tourists, so no-one cares.
Anyways. Today, one woman asked me, “would you buy me some chicken, honey?” And honestly, it wasn’t that I didn’t want to spend the money, but that I didn’t have the ten minutes it would have taken – I was needed back at my desk. So I went into KooKooRoo and bought a gift card for $10, and gave that to her so she could choose her own lunch.
So that leads to resolution #2: hand out at least one food gift card once a week. I’m not Frances Hodgson Burnett’s “Little Princess” (although I always did like Sara Crewe because she was the only heroine with my coloring, pale skin, dark hair and green eyes), and I’m not going to hand over five out of six of my hard earned pieces of bread to a beggar child. But I do think of that line – “I’m not starving,” she said, and put down the fifth bun,” because, well, we’re not. I save the $10 daily by bringing my lunch anyways, so one day out of five, I can give it to someone else. (Although, now that I think about it, I should have made it $15 for two meals).
And apparently, that $10 did come back to me tenfold. When I got home, there was a cheque for $100 in the mailbox, a payment from Virgin America’s travel insurance partner. I sent in the claim at Thanksgiving when Ben got sick, for our flight change fees. And it had been so long, I’d forgotten about it. So aside from buying off my middle-class guilt for the day, I apparently amassed a small bit of positivity from the universe. And generating a small bit of positivity is, despite my cynicism, something I love to do.