Woman Dying Of Cancer Pays Tab For Unsuspecting Restaurant Patrons
So much of the news we consume on a daily basis is negative. Scandal sells and dating back to ancient times, humans possess perhaps an intrinsic craving for drama. Instead of rehashing yet another depressing current event (although I reserve the right to do just that at a later time…duh!), let’s get the weekend started on a positive note.
This uplifting tale comes to us care of a childhood friend of mine who has asked to remain anonymous.
She has been a server at the popular up-all-night diner in the Los Angeles area for several years. She uploaded the photo and written post below to her Facebook page. It is re-posted here with her permission. Enjoy.
A story I’d like to share with everyone in honor of a customer who touched my heart….. Last night I worked the late late shift, meaning I don’t get out until past 3am. At around 1am I always start to lose my patience. Everyone is demanding. Many are drunk. It can be hard to keep our spirits up. Last night right around that same time, an average looking woman sporting a baseball cap and jeans comes in and sits at the counter. She’s chatting up the staff, looking around the restaurant a lot. I make a mental note that she seems a bit weird, like a lot of lonely people who come in to chat with wait staff are. But I keep going about my business. Toward the end of her meal I notice her counting every single person in the restaurant. She silently mouths “One, two, three” while keeping track with her pointer finger. Just another odd ball I think. I wish I could go home already. This night is never going to end. Mid-way through taking an order, my co-worker stands in the middle of the restaurant and says “Excuse me everybody. Can I have your attention for a moment?” She points to the woman at the counter and has a warm smile on her face. “This amazing woman has purchased a cupcake for everyone in this restaurant. She is fucking awesome and I wanted everyone to know that.” My co-worker begins to clap, and the restaurant erupts in applause. I’m applauding too. The woman’s kindness melts away my annoyance, my fatigue, my frustration at working these awful hours. It is such a bright spot in a night that has otherwise been a disaster. I begin putting cupcakes on plates, 30 total, asking each customer to come up and pick one. They look like little kids at a birthday party trying to scope out the best slice of cake. I look for the woman who purchased all these cupcakes for complete strangers, only to discover she has already left. My co-worker comes up to me as I’m looking for extra plates. There are tears in her eyes. “That woman wanted to buy everyone cupcakes because she is dying of cancer.” I stop for a moment, take a breath. The problem with waitressing is that I never quite know who I’m waiting on, even when I think I’ve got the person pegged. The teenagers who I think are going to leave me a nickel end up tipping ten dollars. The man who looks untrustworthy gives me a smile at the end of the night that lets me know he is okay. The woman who won’t stop talking at the counter, making a careful tally of every customer in the restaurant. She wants to buy everyone a cupcake before she goes. So here is to this woman, to her life, to her small act of kindness in the form of 30 cupcakes. She gave me a night at work I will never forget.
If you live in Southern California, you should strongly consider participating in the upcoming Adult Color Wars weekend in Malibu. Remember when we were kids? Playing outside with friends, laughing, being goofy and carefree? Adult Color Wars is a unique event that lets us grown ups feel like kids again. If you are into making new friends and friendly competition, this event is for you!
Aside from having a great time, one of the best aspects of this event is that some of the proceeds will go to a scholarship fund that helps kids and teens to afford sleep-away camp, which, from personal experience, is priceless.
The San Antonio Spurs today announced that Becky Hammon has been hired as an assistant coach. Per club policy terms of the contract were not announced. Hammon, who is currently in her 16th WNBA season, announced on July 23 that she would retire as a player at the conclusion of the 2014 season. Named one of the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All-Time in July of 2011, Hammon ranks seventh in WNBA history in points (with 5,809), fourth in assists (1,687) and sixth in games (445).
This is spectacular. After working with the team last season, the San Antonio Spurs have hired former WNBA player Becky Hammon, making her the first-ever female assistant coach in NBA history. Kudos to Spurs ownership and management, Gregg Popovich, commish Adam Silver and the NBA for taking this progressive step.
With the hiring of Hammon, the NBA once again proves that it isn’t afraid to take a stand on social and political issues, which is a risk that many professional sports leagues and teams are too afraid to take (for obvious reasons).
Man In The Mirror: An Honest Look At The Donald Sterling Saga
Today is proof that progress is and always will be an evolutionary process.
"We are one." If only this rally cry posted on the Los Angeles Clippers website in response to the scandal involving owner Donald Sterling were a universal truth, well, we wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place.
While actions are now set in place to ban Sterling from the NBA for life, the incident prompting “we are one” should remind us that Sterling is not the end-all, be-all face of discrimination. There are millions of other individual and institutional bigots around the globe.
For those of us who follow the Clippers and the NBA, as well as anyone who reads the newspaper here in Los Angeles, we’ve known all too well about Sterling’s rap sheet. ESPN wrote a horribly damaging piece back in 2009 which detailed lawsuits filed against Sterling by both the Justice Department and basketball great Elgin Baylor, claiming disgusting instances of illegally bigoted business practices and workplace discrimination.
Other NBA owners, the league office, and advertisers were also aware of these allegations throughout the years.
I’m guilty too. As a young adult, I became conscious of Sterling’s reputation when lawsuits against him were covered by the Los Angeles Times and other news sources I followed. I remember discussing Sterling and his nauseating practices (both in his other business ventures and running a basketball franchise into the ground) with my friends, family and co-workers. For some reason my distain for the man never stopped me from watching Clippers games on TV or buying tickets and merchandise. Why didn’t I - as someone who comes from a family of activists and Holocaust survivors, and has had the pleasure of spending time with people like Tommie Smith and John Carlos - take any proactive measures to voice my views in such a way to make a tangible difference? Why didn’t I put my money where my mouth was, instead of straight into Sterling’s filthy, sexist, racist pockets?
Actions speak louder than words and Sterling’s actions were heinous long before the words on this tape were recorded. Sterling’s actions were far more harmful to our society than Sterling’s words. Shame on us for taking the easy way out and doing nothing while leaving people like L.A. renters hoping to live in safe, healthy residences and Elgin Baylor to fight the good fight alone.
It’s a shame that many of us ignored Donald Sterling’s discriminatory actions for so long thus further enabling him, but today is finally a step in the right direction.
Finally, we can, in a way, pay homage to the struggles and sacrifices made by so many in the sports world over the last 65 years. Hopefully the NFL will take a page from the short-but-brilliant Adam Silver playbook and get its ass in gear to change a racist team name that has been tolerated for way too long.
Thankfully, the Sterling debacle doubles as a teachable moment in which we can learn valuable lessons about history, justice and ourselves. This is the evolution of progress.
Watch a live stream of Going Roggin, Sundays at midnight.
Are you still up? If so, tune into KNBC ch. 4 here in L.A., or click the link above to watch the live stream of Going Roggin. I’m on with the man, Fred Roggin, and am570’s Tim Cates debating the hottest topics in sports. Up next? Clippers, and the always exciting, Rapid Fire segment. Tune in ASAP and tweet me @jackie_pepper. Thanks everyone!
Jackie Pepper reports that, despite the tragic death of Reeva Steenkamp and Pistorius’s subsequent fall from grace, fellow paralympic athletes still find inspiration from his rise to fame as they carry the torch for the next generation.
*Click the headline/link above to read the original article
February 14, 2013. Valentine’s Day in Pretoria, South Africa.
Late Wednesday evening, I sat at my computer and saw a tweet on my timeline that made my heart sink and momentarily stop beating. Reports out of South Africa were that the Olympic star Oscar Pistorius had mistaken his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp for an intruder in his home, shooting her to death.
As a sports reporter who has been around athletes my entire life and has worked with them professionally for a decade, I am cautious when it comes to believing public images fed to me by publicists, media outlets, etc. Looks are often very deceiving and being a victim of deception is the kind of humiliation I loathe suffering.
That said, I let my guard down when it came to Pistorius. I threw the book at my usual cynicism and allowed myself to digest at face value the countless human interest stories about the double amputee defying the odds athletically while inspiring millions worldwide.
Feverishly, I refreshed my Twitter timeline hoping that what I had read was yet another sickening online rumor or prank. After several minutes and various stories emerging from mainstream media outlets, I was reduced to tears coming to the realization that something so heinous had happened on account of someone who I believed to be one of the rare, true sports heroes to walk this earth.
Deeply moved by the news coming from South Africa, I decided to reach out to those who knew Oscar Pistorius and one person, in particular, a former UCLA football player who had recently lost a leg, who was inspired by the blade runner while suffering the trauma of amputation.
Regardless of the outcome of the Pistorius trial, there will be no positive results in this case. An innocent woman lost her life at the hands of her boyfriend who either killed her purposely, or by accident. Either way, one life was lost and another ruined by a Valentine’s Day tragedy.
The interviews you’ll read in my article, published by The Good Men Project, were conducted within a week of the shooting death of Reeva Steenkamp. I hope you find the insight offered by those who know Oscar Pistorius as fascinating as I did.