Thursday, December 11, 2008

Random Act of Kindness #9

Random Act of Kindness #9
Anonymous to my acquaintance

I’d save this act of kindness to post after our Ethics Class has ended to make it completely anonymous to the very end.
If there are those who read this and were in the Ethics class that started at 9:00 am to 9:50 am, MWF in Fall 2008 at Drake; then you’ll be surprise to know that it was me, Tan, who organized the tables every morning before our Ethics class started for our individual group discussions.

I got the idea after the first three class period, where Professor McCrickerd always wanted us to get together into our small groups of four to discuss about our opinion about the readings and theories. If the classroom wasn’t set up; it usually take about five minutes or even more for everyone to get organized and move the tables for Professor McCrickerd’s activities. I thought that was a waste of our time in the class to discuss and learn about philosophy.

So, I took action. Every day, (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) I would wake up early, despite the fact I wanted and needed more sleep, at 7:00 am to drive to Drake and set up the classroom for our group discussions. And then, I usually sit down and relax, until everyone came and started the class. At the time, I wasn’t considering this act as a random act of kindness. Instead, I was more concern about the time that I and the rest of my classmate had in the class to understand what Professor McCrickerd wanted us to understand; every minute count for me to understand philosophy. After a while, I thought that this natural act to learn and to use all of the time in effectively, could be part of Professor McCrickerd’s anonymous random act of kindness to others requirement. So, for everyday that we had class, I would always set up the classroom for our discussions.

However, I noticed that if I was the only person to be first in class, then my classmates and even Professor McCrickerd will suspend me in doing this act of kindness and then it won’t be anonymous. So, I decided to set up the classroom for our group discussions and do my disappearing act. I would often go to the library to do some research or go to the Olmsted Building and have a cup of coffee and/or eat something and relax until class started. Around 8:40 am is usually the time where my classmates start to arrive to class. So often, when I am late, I would park for 15 minutes in the Drake visitor parking lot, set up the classroom, leave the parking lot, and park my car at a student parking to avoid parking fees, at the same time, set up the classroom for our group discussions without anyone noticing me. However, the two lady janitors did notice me, one day, and I told to keep this as a secret from my classmates and professor. They agreed and returned doing their job, knowing that I was a kind person for doing such a good deed for my classmates and professor; knowing that they could’ve set up the classroom themselves, if they had known to do so.

The best part of it all is that no one actually suspended me in setting up the classroom. I felt excited, happy, and great about myself and my classmates’ curiosity about the classroom being set up. I could barely hold back my smile and excitement, when one day, Professor McCrickerd paused and asked everyone the room, “Was the class set up like this when all you got?” Everyone respond, “Yes” and Professor McCrickerd thought that the other classes liked how she wanted the classroom to be. In addition to this, what better way to not be suspended to setting up the classroom, if I had some of my classmate who saw at Olmsted, before class started or arriving late; that is exactly what happened and it was totally unexpected.

Nevertheless, if there those, who were my class in Ethics MWF 9-9:50am, it was me, Tan, who set up the classroom, every morning, for our group discussions. I guess those who don’t read this, will never find out who set up the classroom in Professor McCrickerd’s Ethics class Fall 2008.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Random act of Kindness #8

Random Act of Kindness #8
To a person who I see, but know very well

Once again, the only person who I see very often, but don’t know, is Marlian. So, I thought that I should give her something for the holiday season. I bought a gift card and a gift card holder for Marlian. This was an easy act to do; however, to keep it anonymous, I had to be clever. I could not trust anyone to deliver the gift card to Marlian personally. No one, that I know, is very good at keeping secrets. Plus, they mostly likely keep the gift card for themselves.

So, I decided to ask the mailman to deliver the letter, not to her personally, but with the family’s mail. The mailman was confused by request; however, he did understand that I wanted this to be anonymous. I made sure that I wrote Marlian name clearly for Marlian’ family to understand that the gift card envelop was for her. And just for kicks, I drew in a heart after her name. I wonder how Marlian would act after receiving the gift card. Of course, I can never claim to have given it to her, because this is suppose to anonymous.

Nevertheless, I feel so good about myself, regardless of what Marlian may think about the gift card. And I see now, that no one can say that I did, because I don’t show any reason to anyone, why I would do should a thing.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Random act of Kindness #7

Random Act of Kindness #7
Anonymous to stranger

Before the Drake fall semester start, my instructors, send out a list of books to buy over the internet than in the Drake University Bookstore. It seemed like a great idea because some of my book cost less over the internet than in the bookstore. So, I order most of my books in Amazon and the transaction went smoothly. I received my book with 3-5 weeks. However, there was one book that I never received and that was my sociology textbook. Classes were about to start and I needed to act fast if I was going to have a textbook for sociology. I e-emailed the seller about the textbook, that has not arrived. He e-mailed me back and wrote that he already shipped the textbook a long time ago and will arrived within the next day.

It never came….

So, I needed to cost my losses and buy the textbook in the University Bookstore, which cost a little bit more than what I paid the seller for his. Normally, a person in this situation would demand their money back and write a bad report about the seller. However, as the semester start, I was more concern about the wonderful opportunity I had to go to Drake. So, then I thought, I am not going to demand a refund and I am not going to write a bad report on the sell. This is college; I have to make some sacrifice and it is expensive. So, I e-mailed the seller and wrote “Thanks” then left this whole ordeal alone.

Random act of Kindness #6

Random Act of Kindness #6
Anonymous to a friend

Wendi Muir has been my friend for three years, now. One day, she asked me to find an elephant piñata for a party that her sister is going to host. I didn’t understand why she needed, specific, a elephant piñata; all she’d said was that she needed one and she couldn’t find one in West Des Moines. So, she asked to find in Des Moines in the Mexican Stores. So, I did. I stopped whatever I was doing that day and search for an elephant piñata. After going to store to store, I finally found a piñata store. I was quite surprise to find one. In any case, I explained my situation to the store owners and agreed to prepare an elephant piñata by tomorrow, which was perfect because Wendi needed it by tomorrow.

The next day, I came to store and brought the elephant piñata for $35. It was big elephant piñata that could hold up to 30-35 pounds of candy. So, I thanked the store owners for making the piñata and carried into my car. I, then, went to meet Wendi at a restaurant, to have lunch and give her the piñata. I explained to her that it was $35 for the piñata and she suddenly got a little depressed.
She said that all the party’s games for her sister party didn’t cost more than $5 and said that she didn’t have the money, now, to pay me back. So, she gave me check and told me to cash it right away. She, then, explain that the elephant piñata was for the Presidential Election Party that her sister was throwing. The Democrats would play a game of pit-the-tail-on-the-donkey, while the Republicans would hit and bash the elephant piñata. She invited me to come, but I declined and said that had to do homework.

After lunch, we both went to car to see the elephant piñata. I opened my trunk and all of a sudden, Wendi burst into joy. With her eyes and month wide opened, she stared at the piñata and said that the piñata was incredible and big. She could not believe that I was able to find a big elephant piñata within short among of time, but I did and she was grateful. I carried the big elephant piñata to her car, while people, who came out of the restaurant, stop and stared at the big piñata. Wendi said that I should put the elephant in the front passenger seat of the car and put the seat belt on as if it was a child. She thanked me once again and left the restaurant’s parking lot. I waved good bye, then hopped in my car and looked at the check that Wendi gave me. And then decided, I wasn’t going to cash it. As farther as I am concern, Wendi found and got the elephant piñata free.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Act of Kindness #3

Random Act of Kindness #3
To a Stranger

One day, I needed a quiet place to study for a test and eat lunch on the road. So I decided to stop in at a Village Inn restaurant. The host sat me near the entrance doors. The server quickly took my order and within a couple of minutes, she brought out my lunch. However, it was during the middle of my meal, where I notice two old ladies slowly walking towards the door, one had a walking cane and the other had walker. The two ladies were struggling opening the door; I quickly glanced around me to a couple and a family eating calmly. I also saw the host and two managers behind the counter, talking among themselves, not noticing the two old ladies struggling with the door.

I hesitated little, then I had the nerves and strength to get out of my sit and quickly ran to help the two ladies. I made it in time to hold the door for the two old ladies. The ladies looked at strangely and surprised to see a young person to be so nice to hold the door for them. And the only thing they said to me was “Thank you” and slowly walked towards the host. A minute later, the host noticed them and sat them at a booth. However, I pretty sure the two managers and the host didn’t see notice me helping the two ladies. Nevertheless, while I was walking back to my table, I noticed from the corner of my eye that the couple and the family were looking at me strangely. At the moment, I could read their expression and question that they had in their head, “Why did that young man help to the two old ladies?” “What does he hope to gain from being nice to strangers?” Regardless, in how the couple and the family thought and looked at me, I continued to walk towards my table, finish my lunch and study a little afterwards. Then, I noticed that everyone continue to finish lunch and move on with their lives, including the two old ladies.

Act of Kindness #5

Random Act of Kindness #5
To a person I hate

The kind of people who I hate to know, talk, and see are people, who are ignorant and take serious pride in who they are base on race. There is teenager in my neighborhood, who is exactly like that. His name is Kevin and he has taken in the image of what a young Mexican-American, who lives in the ghettos. The problem I have with that is that he doesn’t live in the ghetto. Not only that, he has also shaved his head bold, wears long, loose, bagging clothes, hangs out other Mexicans who act the same as him and smokes pot. It is the image that Kevin has adopted; that most of the public see all young Mexican-Americans to be. And that is the exact image that I have to fight and proof people that all young Mexican-Americans are not like him, including myself. So I hate him for what he has adopted.

So one day, while I was clean and planning to sell of my some of books, music CDs, and video games. I decide to be nice to Kevin by give one of the last video game that I ever brought, that he never played. Of course, the last time I ever brought a video game was this spring. However, my grades and education were on the line and I needed to clean out my room and get rid of anything that could interfere with my studies. So I caught Kevin outside that day, and gave him the video game with no explanation or questions asked and walk away. I never looked back to see his expressions and even now, I still don’t know his reaction or talk to him about it.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Keeping a Promise

To keep or not to keep

To keep a promise or to determine that keeping a promise is moral is not something that as a group can decide upon. A group makes decision base upon a majority of the votes, thus minority of the voters are there to criticize the decision. This is peoples’ individuality at work. Even though, the group has decided on their decision on the moral issue of keeping or not keeping promise; the group, then, has force those who are not of favor of the decision to convert. Thus, people will deal with another moral issue of force people to accept the decision.

Groups, I think, are not all bad; however, the first step is for people to decide upon themselves to make keeping a promise moral or immoral. From there, it can be reasonable to find other individuals with the same values, to join in a group to make the decision process easlier. The decision can be made base upon an individual’s happiness. If a person feel happiness by keeping a promise to another, and enjoys the kindness received from other for doing a promise; then that individual will value keeping a promise and called it immoral for not doing so and vice versa. Therefore, rather an individual must make the decision to keeping a promise moral or immoral; the decision is made by one’s own will of happiness and means. Thus, keeping a promise opens a channel to make more rights to obligation that are promised, at the same time, holding on to the individual's will of happiness.