Category: Awesome


Stronger Together

| Minneapolis, MN, USA | Awesome, Coworkers, LGBTQ

(It is November 11th, 2016. I’m openly lesbian, and don’t “pass” for straight due to my unique hair and androgynous dress. Unfortunately, there’s a huge rise in hate crimes after the election, and I have been shoved, called names, and had my car vandalized so far. Even though I am just starting out as a lawyer, I can’t stop these things happening. I am talking about the hate crimes issue with a colleague.)

Me: “…so there’s been a lot more anti-minority and anti-gay harassment lately. People feel emboldened, you know? So do you think you could walk me out of work today?”

(Colleague #2, who is a new immigrant from a conservative south Asian country, stops after walking by and hearing this. He smiles.)

Colleague #2: “Do you know what I would do? I would… tell them ‘oh, you’re harassing this gay person? Would you perhaps now like to meet my .38 special?’”

Colleague #1: *describing himself* “Or do you want a six foot six Norwegian carrying a bat?”

(I knew they were joking, but it meant a lot that two very different people felt so strongly about protecting me!)


Scared You Will Come To Bows

| CA, USA | Awesome, LGBTQ, Students

(I am a student teacher working in an American and Contemporary Literature class with eleventh and twelfth graders. While I am biologically female, I identify as genderfluid and dress in a very masculine fashion. As a result, my attire occasionally includes bowties. We are at the computer lab working on research papers when a student of mine – a star athlete at the school – calls me over.)

Me: “What’s up, [Student]?”

Student: “So, I notice that sometimes you wear bowties.”

Me: “That I do.”

Student: “I was actually wondering if you could teach me how to tie a bowtie.”

(I find this to be very sweet, but I also can’t help chuckling.)

Me: “I actually have a confession to make: I don’t know how to tie a bowtie, either. Almost all of my bowties are pre-tied or clip-on.”

Student: “Oh, really?”

Me: “Yeah. You wanna know the funny part, though? My fiancée can tie bowties, and she doesn’t even wear them.”

Student: “No way. So she ties them for you?”

Me: “Yep! I mean, I only own a couple of bowties that I need tied, anyway. Like I said, the rest are clip-on.” *jokingly* “Sorry that I’m kind of a phony when it comes to that!”

(My student and I both laughed before he went back to work. Sometimes I feel like teenagers are more accepting and tolerant of others’ appearances than adults are!)


A Couple Of Couple Encounters

| Italy | Awesome, Travel

After working in hospitality for over ten years, you can believe me that I have seen a lot, but this takes definitely the cake.

At this time I am 20 years old and working as a waitress in a hotel in northern Italy. I am always assigned the same section of the restaurant and as most guests were on half board, I usually serve the same guests for one or two weeks, at least for both breakfast and dinner. One elderly, German couple stood out the most: always polite, always ready to joke with me, and just generally pleasing.

However, I only work there for one year and then leave.

Five years later, I move to Dubai to work at the front desk in a five-star resort and after a couple of months, low and behold, I notice an elderly couple that seems familiar. Yes, you guessed it, it was the same couple from the place I used to work back then, and they still recognized me! They brought me German chocolate and passed by every evening for two weeks to chat. The husband even brought his slippers from his room, showing me that he had “stolen” them from my previous hotel, and we had a laugh.

Another two years pass by and I am on vacation at home, in Italy, when one day my mother decides she would like to visit her parents, who live in Germany. We drive to Germany very early in the morning and when we arrive, my grandparents decide to invite us all for lunch in a nearby city. While walking through the city centre, I see an elderly couple from behind and start smiling, because they remind me of the elderly couple I knew. Well, they turn around and I must have made a rather startled sound, because they look at me and just stand there, shocked. My mother gets really worried and asks what happened while I and the elderly couple are just staring at each other.

I explain the situation, and we hug and take pictures — the husband saying that he has to take pictures, otherwise no one is going to believe this — and my parents and my grandparents can not stop laughing.

I have not seen them since, but I am sure that in a couple of years, we will meet again!


Giving Them Paramedical Attention

| USA | Awesome, Family & Kids, Health & Body

(I’m a fifteen-year veteran paramedic. I’ve just come into work to pick up my ambulance and start my shift when my supervisor informs me that I have been scheduled for a meeting with both Human Resources and Quality Assurance the next morning. These meetings are usually a very big deal, meaning that somewhere a policy or procedure in treatment wasn’t followed, and disciplinary action is usually involved. So, not the best news. I spend my shift talking to my paramedic partner about every call we’d run in the month prior, trying to figure out what might have happened, but nothing pops on our radar. Skip to the next morning. I show up for the meeting and everyone is pleasant and there are some people there, with a small infant, that I don’t know.)

Quality Assurance Manager: “[My Name], do you recognize any of these folks?”

Me: “No, sir. I’m afraid I don’t.”

Woman: *holding baby* “My husband and I were involved in a very serious accident three months ago while I was pregnant… a week away from my due date. You and your partner were the first people on scene; they told us later that you drove up, and dove right in without any hesitation whatsoever. You put me onto a helicopter because I was pregnant and sent my husband by ground ambulance to the same hospital so we wouldn’t be separated. After my surgery and emergency C-section I have a healthy me and a healthy, happy child. The trauma doc told us that your decisions on the side of that road saved both me and the baby. Would you like to meet her? I can’t think of any better way to say thank you.”

(I held that darling little girl for the better part of an hour, cooing and feeding her and getting to know her amazing parents. After a round of hugs and many thanks all around, I was absolutely floored that these people had taken the time to hunt us down to say thank you. It doesn’t happen often in my line of work, but the times it does mean so much.)


Dollar Of Kindness

| Tullahoma, TN, USA | Awesome, Holidays, Kind Strangers

(Today is Thanksgiving. Some stores close for Thanksgiving, like the convenience store down the road, but our store is open from 7 am – 10 pm. The phone rings and I answer it.)

Me: “[Store], this is [My Name]; how can I help you?”

Customer: “Hi, I was just calling to ask what time y’all are open until today?”

Me: “We are open until our normal time, 10 pm.”

Customer: “Wow, really?!”

Me: “Yes, ma’am!”

Customer: “Well, this is [Customer]; I live across the road from your store, and I was just wondering how many of you are working today?”

Me: “Well…” *hesitating, not sure how EXACTLY to answer as this question is a little out of left field*

Customer: “I am asking because I’d like to fix y’all a plate of Thanksgiving dinner to thank you for working today.”

Me: “Oh! Well, thank you, that’s very kind of you, but you don’t have to do that! That isn’t necessary, though the thought is appreciated.”

Customer: “You sure? I really don’t mind, since you have to work! What time do you get off?”

Me: “My cashier and I both get off at three, and that’s when the next shift will come in.”

Customer: “Oh, you get off at three? That stinks. Well, thank you for working today, and have a happy Thanksgiving!”

(I was so shocked and happy the rest of my shift. That someone would want to do that for us to thank us for working today, and show how appreciative they are for us working, was just more than I could have expected!)

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