Unbagging the Cats 1

Unbagging the Cats 1

Sunday, October 23, 2011

One Good Turn

Our local paper has a regular column about people who do good deeds. Kind of like a Caught Being Good list for adults. Sometimes the acts of kindness are heartwarming, like folks helping stranded motorists, or lending money at a tough time, or cheerful, shelf-stocking teenagers assisting septuagenarians with items on the top tier at the grocery store, or a 9-1-1 operator making sure a lady about to lose her speech got a free land line so a call for help could be traced in an emergency.

But other times, the good deed is a stretch of the imagination. Take the week that a woman was commended because she paid for a newspaper she accidentally picked up. I'm not mocking her. ME, of all people, who just happened to let it slide when the Walmart checker forgot to ring up my DVD of Bridesmaids (Blu-ray edition), and a computer game that The Pony had picked out. I can't help it that she unstealified it and then forgot to charge me. It's not something I make a habit of, ripping off The Man. My momma didn't raise me to be the black sheep of retail customers.

My questionable moral fiber aside, Paper Woman did not use good sense. She stopped to buy a copy of the local newspaper out of a machine. She put in her fifty cents, scooped up her flimsy latest edition, and let the door of the dispenser slam shut. After perusing the headlines, she noticed that she had picked up TWO papers. So she got in her car, drove to the newspaper office, and handed the counter person the extra paper. She explained that she did not want to steal, so she returned the surplus copy.

PUH-LEASE! How much did it cost Paper Woman to drive to that office? Obviously, she had not purchased her paper at the machine out front, or she would not have needed to drive to the office. Around these parts, it could have been a twenty-mile round trip. For a fifty-cent newspaper.

I commend Paper Woman for her honesty. But pity her for her lack of foresight. How about simply putting two more quarters in the machine? Or better yet, putting in two more quarters, then returning the extra paper to the machine? That way, she could be a double do-gooder. Decree herself Doubly DoRight. And later, she could call the office and tell them what she'd done. She could still be a small-town celebrity. But with less hassle, and more money.

There you go. Problem solved. You're welcome, Paper Woman. Maybe I should call the newspaper office and tell them of my good deed.

6 comments:

Sioux said...

Val, you're right. They really scraped the barrel for good deeds that week.

What will it be next? Someone is cutting their thick, claw-like toenails in public and when one clipping flies out and blinds a person, the clipper apologizes? A person refrained from honking their horn the instant the light turned green? Someone did a good deed for EVERYONE and wore a white thong with their white stretched-too-far sheer stretch pants? Let us know...

Linda O'Connell said...

This particular woman wasn't using her noodle. They used to have Believe it or Not in the newspaper. This one still has me shaking my head.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

You know, it has to be hard to fill these weekly papers in small towns. I am only assuming yours is weekly. I mean, how many good deeds can they find if it is a daily paper? My sister used to work for a weekly paper in a small town in Georgia. In addition to their "Caught Doin' Good" feature (complete with a grainy photo of the award recipient), they had a whole page full of the comings and goings of the local residents. Really, reports of who went to eat lunch at which restaurant after church on Sunday. I was visitig once and went to work with her. She put me on the phone, calling folks to see if they had an item for the paper. I dutifully wrote it all down with proper spellings of names and then offered my writing skills to put a little twist on it, but the "editor" declined. I can guarantee that my stories would have provided much more entertainment than what was printed.

Val Thevictorian said...

Sioux,
Urp! I'm doing my own good deed by not letting that little bit of mouth throw-up past my lips. I LOATHE feet! And toenails! Even more than Jerry loathed Newman.

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Linda,
If this woman had a noodle, she would boil it, top it with a nice red sauce, eat it, and go about her business of accidentally stealing papers and returning them for praise.

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Kathy,
Actually, my metropolis is so large that it supports a DAILY newspaper. But the DoGooder column is only once a week. Because apparently, we're not all that good.

Your tale reminds me of another small town where I worked, with a weekly paper and such an Out and About column. It wasn't nearly as interesting as the Legal Eagle we used to read, which was pretty much a county arrest docket.

knancy said...

Well, I think you should contact your local news station. Where I live (Charleston, WV) we have two daily newspapers for 50,000 citizens. The papers have a good person section called "About Town" (socialites dressed in finery at expensive sites contributing to great causes) and a bad person section (Police Blotter) regaling the antics of the crazy, drugged and drunken imbeciles. So I think you should contact your local news station. Our local news station has a “Home Town Hero” award. You get air time, a little party, and a flimsy paper award decorated with pseudo calligraphy and clip art gold medals. You know you want it….

Val Thevictorian said...

knancy,
Yes. I definitely want it. I want to be a small-town celebrity for my questionable good-deed actions