I showed up to the first tryout on a Saturday and was amazed by the amount of people who were trying out. There had to be like 80 kids there, but I wasn’t gonna let that distract me from my goal: I was going to make it.
I went through all the drills and did pretty well, if I do say so myself; so well that I made the first cut and was invited back for the second tryout! I was hyped, but this was what I expected. I didn’t put in all that work for nothing.
The next day was the second tryout, and let me tell you, I went in and killed it! It felt like no one in my position could guard me in the one-on-ones. In the scrimmages I had a few hiccups, but nothing drastic enough to keep the coaches from picking me. In my head, there was no way I was not going to be on that team.
At the end of the tryout, the coaches announced who made the team, and who didn’t in front of the whole group. It’s pretty simple, if they said your name, you made the team. If they didn’t say your name, you were cut.
Knowing how good I did, I sat back and waited for my name to be called. One name came after another, and I started to get concerned. I figured they would’ve said my name by then, but I kept it cool and waited. Then suddenly, the coach stops saying names, and starts thanking everyone for trying out. I figured they must’ve forgot to say my name somewhere in the middle, or maybe his thumb was covering it on the paper or something. I was wrong, I just simply didn’t make the team.
I was hurt on that long car ride home. My mom could tell, so she drove me to one of my favorite places to eat, Chipotle. She gave me her card, and told me to get something to go. As I was walking toward the building, another guy, with his hair cut in a bowl shape, approached the door at the same time as me. I let him go first and he said, "thanks."
It was late, so Chipotle was close to closing, we were the last two customers of the night. He ordered his food, then I ordered mine. As I was finishing my order, for some reason, the lady behind the counter asked, “Are your meals together or separate?” I was thinking, “What? Do we look like we know each other? I haven’t even made eye contact with this dude more than once, I don’t know this bowl cut dude.”
Before I could say anything, bowl cut guy looked at me, smiled and said, “It’s together.” He paid for my burrito. I was shocked. I told him thanks, and he said, “don’t mention it.”
We both left the store and went our separate ways. To this day, I’ve never seen that guy again, but that small gesture brightened up my night. I’ll never really know why he bought my burrito, but that moment really impacted me. After that, I didn’t feel as sad. It was as if something was telling me, “Cheer up, everything’s going to be ok.”
It just goes to show you that one small act of kindness, can have a huge affect on someone. God can turn something small like that, into a powerful story.
To that bowl cut guy, if you’re reading this, thanks again! You taught me a valuable lesson, that I’ll never forget.
A message from the foundation of small acts of kindness,