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Tuesday, December 24, 2019


And so it came to pass in the town of West Pittston that I was sent to find and acquire pecans for the baking needs of Ms. Rivers.

There are a few reasons why this is noteworthy.

First, I barely know what pecans look like.  Put them in a lineup with walnuts, cashews, and some of their other friends and there's about a 50/50 chance I will not be able to make a positive identification.  This isn't the case of some benign indifference, mind you. I really dislike nuts.  All nuts.  In my head there is a scale of sorts, starting with walnuts, where my reaction is one of "I'm not eating that!" to peanuts, where my reaction is "that's simply disgusting...why are you eating that?".

Second, there were no pecans at our local Gerrity's supermarket, at least not that I could find, as I scoured the baking isle while on the phone with Ms. Rivers.

Third, after getting off the phone and staring blindly at the shelves, hoping a bag that said "pecans" on it would appear, low and behold a kind stranger comes upon me, and after hearing my plight, decides to have pity on me.  This was a lady of my age or younger, with a cart full of stuff and clearly lots to do on her own, but yet she wanted to help.  And help she did, as she showed me some additional hiding places where pecans tend to congregate.  At the third stop, we hit the jackpot, and pecans were, in fact, located.  I thanked this lady three times (at least) for her concern and help.  And I got my pecans.

Now it's easy to get caught up in the negativity that seems to be swirling around us these days.  On a national level, we have folks glorifying & excusing tawdry name-calling and treating greed as if it were some kind of warped virtue.  I feel that all the time, and it certainly permeates how I think about things all too often.  Yet this lady I did not know, spent five-plus minutes of her obviously busy shopping day to help me find pecans.  Why?  I suspect it was because she simply wanted to help...because it was the right thing to do.  I'm sure it wasn't a big deal to her, but after this past year (there's a larger post coming on that topic), it was a big deal to me.

I know, this may come across as sappy and maybe a bit stupid, but I honestly don't care.  Maybe if all of us helped each other (and strangers) out just a bit more...for no more of a reason than it is simply the right thing to do...our nation and our world would be a slightly better place.

Happy Holidays to one and all.  Whatever you celebrate...or don't celebrate...may it bring you peace and some joy.

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