89 Random Acts of Kindness

Two NFL players have ‘come out’ in support of the LGBT community. This doesn’t mean they’re learning the lyrics to I Will Survive nor that they’ve submitted their applications to drive the Pope’s little bulletproof Cinderella cart. It just means that they respect the humanity in you and I because each respects the humanity in himself.

Brendon Ayanbadejo and Chris Kluwe were born and raised in homes with parents who taught them to think for themselves, treat everybody fairly and defend their opinions with gusto. It’s a bitter-sweet celebration because this shouldn’t really make headline news – it shouldn’t have to. But until we live in some sort of tolerant Utopia, we will always need stories like this to protect the bashed and defend the brave.

To prove his unwavering support for equality, Brendon donated a pair of tickets to a gay marriage fundraiser, which made a fourth term Maryland Politician go all Mel Gibson on his efforts. The oh so honourable Emmet Burns sent a letter to Brendon’s team manager demanding that he “…take the necessary action … to inhibit such expressions from your employee,” before ending off his love letter by adding: “I know of no other NFL player who has done what Mr. Ayanbadejo is doing.”

I know of no other person that thinks fishing is sexy but that doesn’t mean this glorious pastime doesn’t exist. Ergo, this unwitting Emmet is the same guy who got into a fight with a tow truck driver in 1999. Now I’m not down with the sub culture of tow truck drivers in the US, but let’s just say that here in South Africa, anyone who picks a fight with a tow truck driver is just stupid. So is anyone who names their child Emmet. So, perhaps it’s not all his fault that he grew up to be a complete boil.

But fret not for Emmet. I think I’ve found him someone to hold hands with on the straights-only playground. This talented tulip posed stoically in the lush forest of loserville, dressed in her hardcore K-mart tee and delivered her best Eminem impression.

She and “author” E.L. James should hang out together and fall into an open manhole. They’re as progressive as our very own fearless leader, the turtle, who said this week that we “…should not lose faith in our own humanity and collective ability to correct the wrongs we see in our country.” I think he’s onto something there. The murder, rape and hijacking statistics sure prove it.

So with cupcakes like these, it’s an absolute pleasure to hear good news stories about people committed to doing and being good examples. Samantha Manns is an 18 year old Ohio teen who since the passing of her 89 year old grandmother, is committed to honouring her memory by performing 89 Random Acts of Kindness. Her first was to pay the bill for the car behind hers in a drive through.

They cried.

Times are hard.

Who knows what their story is or what happened in their day before they got into that queue for food.

We need more random acts of kindness, South Africa. Could you think about yours – maybe even doing just one a week? It makes what Emmet and that poetic poepol fill their days with look like an absolute waste of time to me.


© Dylan Balkind

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