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I met a man who’s in a sad mood ( Archived) (12)

Oct 30, 2008 8:06 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
PietroPaoloV
PietroPaoloVPietroPaoloVGöteborg, Vastra Gotaland Sweden113 Threads 5 Polls 1,509 Posts
The Star Thrower is an essay.
By whom it is written I really don’t know. To much of a shame of mine, I must admit.
To many it will most likely be familiar or well known.

Sometimes, you steal a story, and you make it your own. Such is the case here.
I will tell it as I have remembered it in my mind, but it is not mine, let us be very clear about that, it is only inspired by someone who owns the idea, who should be praised entirely.

I was sat - right before the two women approached me in that other story which I’ve told here much recently - by a young man who is in an obvious state of dissatisfaction and with a stature expressing gloom. I speak with him from time to time. We share smiles, yet behind the music of his ever so often laughter allowed I manage to provoke, there is an evident sadness. He is sad.

A life is very short. And the people you meet in your life are not really that many. It is worthwhile, mostly, the time you spend with the few people you meet in your short life. And it is not a great sacrifice of yours to reach out and ask those quite few you meet in your quite short time, when you sense they are feeling weak, alone and sad, and ask why they are sad.

I’ve often thought about asking him, this man, but didn’t want to pry, because I could make him laugh, and perhaps make him forget, for the moment at least, I think.
So I didn’t ask, but today I did, because today I couldn’t make him laugh.

As it turned out, the man was sad because he felt he didn’t do enough for his young children. He was divorced, his former wife had custody, as it mostly ends here, and he simply felt the once every second weekend with them, that he couldn’t provide enough of what a father should provide to his children, during such short spells with a vast divide between them spells.

On top of that, his ailing father was dying, and he couldn’t find time to visit as frequently as he wished, and he knew his father wished his only son could find time to do so, more.
Funny how we grow aware of things that matter most as we approach the days of knowledge that end is near.

And, on top of that were several other things into which I will not go into. Both because the feeling I have of wanting to keep it a matter between him and I, but also because I couldn’t explain them without paragraphs I can’t estimate the length of at this point.

The main reason for his sad state was that he felt… inadequate, I think that is the word. That he was in a state of mind where he felt he wasn’t enough, that he didn’t do enough. Teary eyed, he became once I asked.

I didn’t know how to tackle that, didn’t know how to help. It’s not a moment when you can put a sincere palm of caring on the person’s shoulder and it will make the shoulder rise back to proud, instead of weighed down by grief.

So, in my somewhat caught off guard state, and not knowing what to do, I stole. I remembered this story.
And in this clumsy way, I tried to cheer him up….

I told him the story.

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Oct 30, 2008 8:07 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
PietroPaoloV
PietroPaoloVPietroPaoloVGöteborg, Vastra Gotaland Sweden113 Threads 5 Polls 1,509 Posts
........


An elderly man, a writer, a philosopher and teller of good stories, he used to visit the ocean’s shores. To find inspiration, to allow the freshness of salty air cleanse his mind from troublesome distractions, and to invent instant stories about what adventures a simple item as driftwood had landed from on his land.

On a bright blue-skied summer day, as he was approaching one of his favorite parts of the miles long stretch of beach, he notices a character, merely a dot in the distance at first, the character was. White shirt waved by the invisible hands of a breeze, black trousers, running about on the beach in the far distance, in midst of a dance set towards the choir of waves rolling in behind him, most intriguing, it was, the elderly man found.

A new scene, a new inspiration for a new story to be put in the elderly man’s notepad.

Curiosity brings pace to his legs, new stamina to old weakened feet, and he walks faster down towards the man in a white shirt and dark trousers.

As he draws closer, he notices the man is young, and the young man is bowing towards the sand, looking, as if he is picking up items off it, then throwing moves towards the ocean. And that is exactly what he is. Looking, bowing, picking up, then throwing out into the waters.

Closer more, the older man see’s what the younger man does. The whole beach if full of stranded starfish, thousands of them washed ashore by the waters, drying, dying under the sun.

The older man, who’s past the years of shyness and unnecessary hesitations, he asks:

- Young lad, good morning, to thee, but if you don’t mind me asking, what on earth are you doing?

The young man responds:
- I’m throwing starfish into the ocean.

Wise is the old man, has his share of wisdom to share, but at this reply he hesitates and finds few words to reply with, except another question:
- But, why? There are thousands and thousands of them stranded on this miles long beach, what difference does it make if you effort yourself like this, it makes no sense?

The young man replied:
- They are drying under the sun on this shore, and if I don’t throw them back they die.
At this point the young man bent down, picked up another starfish, threw it out into the ocean, and following that move of his was a look back towards the old man, and the young man said:
- It made a difference to that one!

I my clumsy way, with this story, not my story, I tried to tell this bloke that he did make a difference, a big difference for his kids, for his ailing father, and whoever he met, because he is a very good man, a very fine heart.

And on that thought, upon those words he wasn’t teary eyed stood before me, instead a tear he allowed, which fell out his eye and found its path down towards the edge of his chin, and then he thanked me.

These are the moments in life that matter!
Allowed to enter inside the most intimate world of emotions of people you barely know.
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Oct 30, 2008 8:58 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
trish123
trish123trish123Macclesfield, Cheshire, England UK231 Threads 6 Polls 19,911 Posts
Nice reflections........... thumbs up
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Oct 30, 2008 9:01 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
BarrenPneuma
BarrenPneumaBarrenPneumaGolden Staircase, Ontario Canada121 Threads 4 Polls 2,496 Posts
My brother that touches me in ways I can never express. Thank you very much.hug
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Oct 30, 2008 9:09 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
Sommerauer71
Sommerauer71Sommerauer71Salzburg, Austria164 Threads 4 Polls 19,249 Posts
I too met a man in a sad mood.

It was one of my students, very sad, you see, he is lonely, misses his friends, that are not with him...

So I spent time with him, he asked me to.

18, he is. Smart, intelligent, yet is far away from home.

Struggling, which makes me struggle.

Coz, his friends were expelled, for something that was not pretty or nice.

But he is the one left behind. And I am there, it truly plays on my heart when I leave him.

I do grown up life, a grown up job, I come here for some fun.

A sad person touches my big heart, I am there.

But then I arrive home to a squabble, to women fighting, it just makes me want to go right back to my 18 year old and hug and state it is ok. WE will get through this.

And he is the one that I want to bake bread with right now. Just to see him smile, just to have a good time.

I will knead my dough just to make him feel better.
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Oct 30, 2008 10:01 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
trish123
trish123trish123Macclesfield, Cheshire, England UK231 Threads 6 Polls 19,911 Posts
I met a man who looked a bit sad one time - three children later I actually recognised that sadness as a sardonic sort of smile........... and the joke was on me..................
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Oct 30, 2008 10:10 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
trish123
trish123trish123Macclesfield, Cheshire, England UK231 Threads 6 Polls 19,911 Posts
Another time, and I still dont know if I did the right thing, I was on my way to collect my dole and had actually done pretty well that week as I still had a half ounce of tobacco which I had opened just that morning - in those days, that was a lot of material worth in my world...........

There was a 'less fortunate person' - a 'tramp' for want of better words, he was begging on the streets so I gave him the pack of baccy - it meant a lot to me and I have often wondered if it meant anything at all to him - I guess the lesson learned there is that the giving was the important thing rather than the judging of the acceptance............
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Oct 30, 2008 10:13 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
druidess6308
druidess6308druidess6308Aliquippa, Pennsylvania USA99 Threads 20,283 Posts
Yes...we make a difference in the lives we touch if we're lucky. I'm grateful to know that I have done that for some. And I'm very grateful for the ones who have touched my life and made a difference in it.

That was a beautiful story, and it touched me deeply. hug
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Oct 30, 2008 10:14 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
druidess6308
druidess6308druidess6308Aliquippa, Pennsylvania USA99 Threads 20,283 Posts
trish123: Another time, and I still dont know if I did the right thing, I was on my way to collect my dole and had actually done pretty well that week as I still had a half ounce of tobacco which I had opened just that morning - in those days, that was a lot of material worth in my world...........

There was a 'less fortunate person' - a 'tramp' for want of better words, he was begging on the streets so I gave him the pack of baccy - it meant a lot to me and I have often wondered if it meant anything at all to him - I guess the lesson learned there is that the giving was the important thing rather than the judging of the acceptance............


hug
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Oct 30, 2008 10:27 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
rwantin
rwantinrwantinRoyal Oak, Michigan USA21 Threads 11,127 Posts
That was wonderful. My sincere thanks...tip hat
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Oct 30, 2008 11:07 PM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
constanza
constanzaconstanzaLA, California USA30 Threads 1 Polls 6,489 Posts
I once knew someone who was sad....it was a way of living life....or refusing to participate perhaps.....a safer feeling.
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Oct 31, 2008 7:08 AM CST I met a man who’s in a sad mood
ladyinwaiting
ladyinwaitingladyinwaitingAmwaj Island, Bahrain21 Threads 288 Posts
hug
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by PietroPaoloV (113 Threads)
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