Grateful for … silence

Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. … Matthew 6:1-34

I had a friend who threw a couple of ugly-looking plates of food at the homeless on Thanksgiving. Plates made by his wife who couldn’t cook anything pretty to save her life. A wife he complained about every minute of every day. One he had no problem cheating on.

We aren’t friends anymore. I suspect a lot of those stories about her were lies anyway. In any event, I’m not concerned about them. But I am so glad I do not have to hear about the fucking four plates of ugly-looking food that he bravely walks outside and delivers to the first four people he sees on the streets.

The first time he told me he liked to give out Thanksgiving meals to the homeless, I was charmed.

Wasn’t sure why he told me, though. As I don’t really tell anyone when the spirit moves me to do a good deed. Although I did tell him about a good deed I did around that time. You know, to bond over being raised right.

But this one, man. He wrote blog posts about it. Odes to himself. Not a word about the wife slaving away in the kitchen to make that ugly-looking stuffing and dry turkey and canned cranberry. But reams of poetry and social media posts and photos of the ugly meals.

I mean, yeah, it’s noble. Like I said, I was charmed. Mom makes me pretty meals but we only cook enough for the two of us and the cat. And the cat ends up eating off OUR plates, so there are no leftovers. I mean, you can only make a half-pound tray of ham and a half-pound tray of turkey from Honeybaked only go so far.

And most of the homeless in my town are junkies fresh off a heroin high because they probably live in one of those fake recovery houses that only wants their insurance money. But still. Even if I did do something nice for a human (I prefer ducks, squirrels, cats and turtles, and pretty much anything with a beak), have you heard about it here? Nope. And you never will.

In any event, I used to try to say to this person, hey, I like to keep my charitable whims private. (Hint.) Or, gee, that’s really special and something that can make you feel good inside about because it’s your little secret. (HINT.) Or if you want to go all biblical and shit, the giving it reward enough.

Yeah. Whatever.

In any event, today I am thankful for not hearing that annual pat on the back for something he probably hasn’t even done in a couple of years.

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