The Kindness of Strangers: Traffic Light Edition

The Kindness of Strangers: Traffic Light Edition

I left work very angry today. That isn’t something I do often. In fact, I could probably count the times that has happened in the last 4 years on one hand.

As I rode along the expressway on my commute home, I sat stewing. I was going over and over imaginary conversations and what if scenarios in my mind. With each passing mile I was getting more angry. I tried to reason with myself, to back away from the ledge of being good and pissed off. But, my self-absorbed anger hung over me like a cloud.

Just a few miles from home, I slowed to a stop at a traffic light. Watching and waiting for the light, I glanced to my right at the car in the turning lane. There from the drivers seat, a woman threw me a lifeline. In one fluid gesture, she raised her eyebrows, smirked her lips and nodded her head up and down as if to say, “Wow, niiiiiice bike.”

In that moment I smiled in spite of myself and nodded a thank you. Before I knew what was happening, I felt tears well up in my eyes. Some strange combination of shame and relief had overwhelmed me.

Her gesture, as simple as it was – changed me in that moment. She put a bandaid on my day and made things all better. I wish I could have hugged her.

What you do and what you say matters to people. Even if you never see them again.

Orange Triumph Tiger Triumph Logo

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9 Replies to “The Kindness of Strangers: Traffic Light Edition”

  1. It really can turn your mood around can’t it? That happened to me about midway through the season while out on the Ducati. A similar scenario with a person looking and mouthing “nice bike”, it made my day.

  2. i love this! and it can work in reverse too, sort of like “kill em with kindness”.

    what do i mean?!… i had a lady pull up behind me and blast her horn (she didnt need to). the horn really peeved me, IMHO thats like the last thing you want to do to a mc for no reason cause my brain instantly goes to “wheres the fire”. anyway she instantly pissed me off. apparently she wanted my designated parking space and thought she wouldnt get my attn over my loud pipes so she blasted her horn at me. grrr sigh…

    anyway my parking space, my bike, my desire to avoid jail and not hit her (lol), so instead i nicely told her; sorry this is my space, visitors can park anywhere uncovered instead, have a fabulous day. to my surprise (and relief), she was thankful appreciative and equally cordial. go figure. suddenly i wasnt pissed off anymore…she was just clueless. lol!

    and hey, that is a nice bike fuzzy! 🙂

    1. It really is amazing. And it really can go in either direction – for the bad or the good.

      I’m just really thankful that she was there. I don’t get really angry very often, so when i do it’s like full on meltdown. She really saved me from that. I guess I must have been looking for a way out, and she was it.

      Be nice – it matters. <3
      I’ll try to live that.

      1. Fuzzy girl – your experience resonated so strongly with me and you are right – being kind does matter – you never know the sack of hammer handles the other person is carrying…a smile can change and do soooo much!

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