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A Seizing of Giving
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Norm and I went out to dinner last night to celebrate my birthday and just to have a night out for the first time in months.

Our waitress was young, with an intelligent alert air, the kind of presence that is very attractive, no matter the physical attributes nor the gender.

I asked her how it was going (old fogies that we are, we were early enough that there was time for conversation). She said she was in college; today had been the last day of classes; and Monday was the start of final exams, so that's how she was. Busy. I said too bad you have to work and she made some comment about having to pay the rent.

Norm asked her what her major is, she said veterinary school, so of course I had to say Woof. She laughed and said, yes, exactly.

Her service was excellent--and accurate--in spite of the fact she was obviously very tired.

When we left, I was seized by the impulse to slip a gift into her apron pocket (sleight of hand) -- it was the one hundred dollar bill from a refund check I had just cashed. Her face lit up like a Christmas tree as I said, "For the education fund--I'll leave a general tip on the table."

She thanked me twice more before we managed to shuffle our way to the exit (Norm walks very slowly). It gives me great pleasure to be in a position where I can help someone. I, too, worked full time while going to school full time and I know how exhausting it can be, especially waiting tables and getting very little sleep.

I wish I were wealthy enough to do unexpected acts of generosity more often. It gives me a deep sense of satisfaction, to be able to help, especially where the person is so obviously working so hard to make ends meet. You don't wait on tables for the fun of it and jobs right now are hard to come by.

A seizing of giving is a joyful act.

Eric's comment reminded me that I often used to wonder (and still do) what it would have been like to have been a student without having had to earn a living at the same time. Just think of all the time I'd have had to really learn and think and read! Not to mention sleep.

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