Dustin DeTorres By Dustin DeTorres • September 3, 2013

When Paying it Forward Comes Full Circle

I'm going to break the marketing post repertoire that normally happens here to go off topic. Id like to tell you about something that happened this morning.

While I was going on my regular early morning run, I noticed an old grumpy man that I've seen for many mornings now walking his little dog. He never says "good morning" or "hello" to people walking or running by. I've never even seen him make eye contact with anyone.

It was early in the morning so the sunrise had just started coming above the buildings of downtown Orlando. So much so that it was almost blinding if you looked in my direction as I came up on him in a full jog. Especially blinding for an 85 year old man that just woke up.

For some reason, I purposely made more noise to get arise out of the old make him flinch or to possibly look up for once. He looked up alright. His squinty eyes with huge, overgrown eyebrows that haven't been trimmed in years. You could tell that he could only see a body there and not a person.

I looked in his eyes and said, with a smile, "good morning!". He gave a miniature smirk and gave me a "good morning" right back. Wow!

I rounded the corner and pretty much forgot about the situation. I ended up doing a full circle subconsciously around the block and all of a sudden the old man was in the distance again. This time the sun wasn't in his eyes and several other joggers were on the street in front of me. I noticed that the grumpy old man was saying "good morning" and looking at each person this time. This time he had a smile.

Was it my forceful interaction of kindness that caused the old man to act differently? I'd like to think so.

How many times do we purposely NOT say something nice or acknowledge other fellow human beings? Think about this one today.


Dustin DeTorres