I wrote last January about a moment of kindness I experienced through a chance encounter with a stranger. My local Bagel Man, at Einstein’s Bagels located at 3904 E Washington Ave, Madison, WI 53704. I’m giving the full address in case you should want to send him a holiday card after hearing about how awesome he is. I know I do! Plus, no kidding, best bagels (you have to try the French Toast bagels!) and most delicious coffee anywhere, super clean shop and friendly staff. Win/win, right?
Anyway, you can read the original article here, and it really touched me, how kind this fellow was to em, so it’s a pretty good read, I think. But anyway, I have gone through a LOT since last January, including almost a month in the hospital with pancreatitis (Oh Gods! How I missed my bagels then!) and a lot of personal challenges otherwise too. But I have to say that throughout all that trouble, every once in a while I would remember the morning when everything seemed to gang up on me at once and I was trying to hide my tears in the bagel shop when this wonderful, good hearted individual showed me an act of random kindness, and it warmed my heart all over again, every time I thought about it and even now, he touches my heart.
Well, I saw my very favorite bagel guy this morning, and finally learned his name and finally told him how much I appreciated his care and kindness on that long ago, cold and cloudy January day. I had been too well, I guess embarrassed would have to be the word, to talk to him about it before. I’m not sure why, and folks, believe me, I don’t embarrass easily! But today I spoke to him about it and I’m glad I did because I don’t think he had any idea of how profound an effect his actions had on me.
It’s important for us to remember things like that. Kindness, compassion, caring, whether in the form of a pat on the back, a donation to a charity or food bank, or even a bit of chocolate to cheer up a stranger on a grey cold day, all have their lasting effect on people!
The ones who do these seemingly small acts of kindness seldom get so much as a thanks, and more seldom still are they aware that they honestly made a difference for someone else, long past the time of the event itself. Here’s hoping that all of us can follow Bagel Man’s fine example and just care, and let it show, for that kind of thing is a beacon in the darkness for some people, some times, when they need it most. Also, guess what? I finally found out that his name is Steve.
Thanks again, Steve, the Mighty Bagel Man who makes the whole world a little bit better just for being in it. You rock Steve!
UPDATE – January – Well, now I am embarassed. When I went to Einstein’s yeterday, I saw my favorite bagel man and apparently I was mistaken about his name! I believe, based on intel I got from questioning a clerk (since I was far too embarrassed to ask the man himself), that his name is actually Phil. But you know what? I could be wrong again – and besides, superheroes don’t need proper first names. So, Steve, Phil, or whatever name you go by, thank you and you will lwys be Bagel Man to me!