Tuesday, July 15, 2014

People are Beautiful

Know what I love? A day of people watching where every single stereotype you've heard gets turned inside out. Today I went on my usual Diet Coke run. I'm uploading Secrets of the Mine (coming next week! Whee!!!) and I need caffeine or nothing will get done. 

So I'm standing in line with my empty cup, while a woman with a baby in a cart are in line in front of me. When the mom steps forward to get her drink, I suddenly notice another person approaching the cart. If I saw him anywhere else, I'd probably assume he was homeless and move on. If I had to guess ethnicity, I'd say Mexican or Central American native, super skinny with tattoos covering his thin arms. An untrimmed beard covered his face. Long, greasy hair cascaded from beneath an old Fedora, and a dirty t-shirt that was way too big hung over dirtier pants, black faded to gray, with ripped knees.

I stepped back to see the baby in the cart drop a rattle on the ground. This man picked up the rattle and handed it back, cooing and smiling at this child. The baby handed the rattle back, and the man took it, glowing, shaking it and playing peek-a-boo. The mom finished up and took the cart away, with the baby still holding  the rattle out to this man as his mom left. He had the widest smile on his face as he waved goodbye that that little baby.

When this man saw me, he stepped back and apologized for getting in my way. I smiled and told him it was the cutest thing I've seen in a while, and he tipped his hat to me before he walked away. All I could think was, despite all the ugliness we think we see in humanity, people are good. Believing in stereotypes does nothing but limit ourselves. It's too easy to buy into them to reinforce what we think the world is or what it should be, but in the end, people are beautiful.