OMGabe

by Gabe Berman – the author of Live Like a Fruit Fly

I Met A Messenger Today – the sequel

“Shit. This fucking guy wants to talk to me?” I thought.

(Yes. There’s lots of cursing in my internal dialogue.)

I just wanted to sit there, upload pics to Instagram like a motherfucker (that one was just thrown in there for my own fun), suck on my venti iced coffee, and then, in between it all, dwell on the perfect flowers which encircled the man-made geyser/water-fountain at this outdoor mall I found myself at.

But this chubby old guy with a Brooklyn accent had to chime in with, “The sound of the fountain. It’s really nice.”

“Shit, and he’s autistic,” I joked to myself.

Be nice Gabe. Be nice.

I put my phone down. Established eye contact. Remembered I was a person. Remembered we’re all connected. Remembered I was here to serve a purpose. Kindness. Healing. Make people laugh. Etc. Etc.

We talked about the fountain. The flowers. The breeze. The adorable Asian babies in strollers.

“Do you follow the Mets,” he asked next.

“Nope, not at all. I’m sorry.”

I apologized because he seemed a little disappointed.

But it didn’t stop him.

He went on to describe a whole inning to me. Pitch by goddamn pitch.

Losing patience, the back of my brain said, “Excuse yourself and go to the bathroom.”

But I hung in there. Without even looking at my phone, which I was dying to do.

He was a sweet man and deserved some sweetness.

And then, out of nowhere, as if a switch was flicked in the universe, he said, “I’m a healer, you know. I do healings through Jesus.”

Matter of factly, but totally channelled, he spoke clearly about God and faith and love.

Not religiously, but beautifully. Divinely.

How bizarre. I wasn’t there for him, he was there for me.

He was a messenger.

But the message came with a test.

Would I be kind to a stranger? And would I continue to show kindness when I really wanted to cut and run?

Yes.

Thankfully, yes.

Because he finally said, “It ain’t never going to be perfect down here, you know. And I’m not afraid of dyin’. You’re going to see your mother and father and aunts and uncles again. Don’t you worry about it.”

He stood up and finished with, “Alright Gabe, it was nice talking to you. Time for me to stroll around and get my exercise.”

I gave him the respect of not watching as he walked away. Because I had a pretty good feeling he was just going to vanish.

Live Like A Fruit Fly

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8 thoughts on “I Met A Messenger Today – the sequel

  1. Wow Gabe, that was an awesome experience. Thanks for sharing, and for the reminder to be patient, kind, and nice, to others. You’re right, we are all connected. God bless you.

  2. This right here, is what life is all about darling. I love this so so much

  3. Natalie Sutherland on said:

    Hey Gabe it is wicked how you create empathy with the selfish reader, such as myself – I’d want to run as well. This kind of thing happens all the time to me, and it’s practice isn’t it? Sitting through people and their stories.
    But in the end genuine empathy occurs. Almost all the time.
    And you were exquisite the way you said you didn’t watch him leave. Sensitive to a point that it would be almost impossible for language to describe. But you did.
    Nice text. Congrats.

  4. Sherry Wyatt on said:

    We should all be so lucky. Sounds like this guy gave you a good uplifting.

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