I work as a part-time waitress, and it was a really busy evening on a night where I really needed to be studying for a midterm the next day. Needless to say, I was very stressed out, and the presence of a very annoying customer did not help at all. She complained that there was too much ice in her drink, then there was too little. Her son “spilled his burger” and required a free replacement burger. THIS IS NOT A DIET COKE IT IS A COKE!! (I was positive it was a diet the third time a brought one to her). Then, my apparent slowness in getting more dip for her table set her off when I brought it to her table.
She unleashed a tirade on me, calling me all sorts of things, stereotyped my hair color, claimed I was only working there because I was too stupid to go to school and get a “real” job, and a lot of other stuff. I was more stunned than offended, and I kind of just stood there in shock. Suddenly, someone tapped that customer’s shoulder. It was an old man who frequented the restaurant by himself, and who I had served multiple times (honestly, I thought he was cold and a bit grumpy). I still remember his words. They were something like this:
“Excuse me, but some of us are trying to enjoy our food, and if you have a problem with this nice young lady, then you’re gonna have to get through me, you disgusting person.”
With that, he tipped his hat to me and went back to his table. The customer just sat there with her mouth agape, and after awhile quietly paid and left. I went to thank the old man, and he said “When you have as little time as me left in the world, you take every chance in the world to help someone else” and left me a large tip, which I tried to refuse but he wouldn’t take back. My sister later asked me why I was so quiet when she picked me up that night; I was just thinking about the meaning of life…
I suppose this wasn’t really an “extreme” act of kindness, but it was still something I appreciated very much.
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