Yesterday it was reported that a #PayItForward chain at the local Starbucks here in St. Petersburg, FL was stopped by a local blogger. After reading this story I got pretty angry. I don’t usually let stuff bother me but as a parent and a blogger I was down right pissed. So I googled the “blogger” (I use this term REALLY loosely). It turns out that he was under investigation for extortion of local politicians & medical professionals. While charges were ultimately not pressed this “blogger” did state in email
“If you want to send me a list of stories you find objectionable, I’ll take them down,” Schorsch responded, “so long as you renew your ad package.”
So maybe it didn’t meet the burden of proof to warrant extortion charges but it definitely is an example of blackmail, un-professionalism, and a bad blogger/journalism (if you want to call him a journalist or a professional blogger, which I don’t). I digress so let me get back to yesterdays story and why I think it’s important for parents to #Payitforward.
After I read the story yesterday about him breaking the #PayItForward chain I confronted him on Twitter because I refused to give him pageviews (Which is why I feel he did this stunt in the first place.
— Peter Schorsch (@SaintPetersblog) August 21, 2014
The problem with him is his logic and lack of human decency. First of all Starbucks did not start either of the #PayItForward chains. It was thoughtful generous people who decided to #JustBeNice. These simple acts would be referred to as random acts of kindness. Which by definition require them to be random. Are ya with me so far? 🙂
The story goes on to say:
The Times has previously reported that the baristas at the window handled the chain like this: People ordered a drink at the speaker. When they pulled through to the next window, the barista, Vu Nguyen, 29, leaned through and said with a smile that their drinks had already been paid for by the person in front of them. Would they like to return the favor?
This my dear readers is when the Random Act of Kindness was turned INTO a #PayItForward. Paying it forward does NOT require randomness. And if what the Times reported that the barista’s were saying to the customers is true EVERY person had the option to say NO! but they chose to #PayItForward. The “blogger” was quoted by the times saying:
What is not an act of kindness is what was happening today at the same Starbucks, where customers were being told that they had had their drink paid for and then asked would they like to pay for the drink of the person next in line.
That’s not generosity, that’s guilt.
When a new ‘Pay It Forward’ chain started today, I had to put an end to it.
(Guilt you say “blogger”? Hmm that is the cat calling the kettle black don’t ya think?) I don’t believe ANY of those that participated would say that guilt was their motivation to #PayItForward! As for him calling it a “marketing event”, I do not know how the first chain was leaked to the media but the second one was leaked in a comment to the Times the next day by a women who mentioned that she was #37 in the new chain. Sure other local media picked up the story and were reporting on it. Why shouldn’t they? In a time where there is so much bad going on in the world showcasing a story that restores faith in humanity is what our country needs most. Maybe said “blogger” needs to take a personal inventory of his motivations for his daily actions and let go of his own guilt and hatred. I stand by my original response that he only did this for attention and pageviews on his blog, which by the way I haven’t mentioned nor have I visited. HOWEVER, it doesn’t matter to me what his intentions were or What he hoped to get out of the resulting nastiness that he posted on his blog about the #PayItForward chain. You know why?? Because it ultimately turned into a life lesson for my daughter Emma.
Why It’s Important for Parents to #PayItForward
This morning after I dropped off my son to school I stopped by the Dunkin Donuts to get myself a Pumpkin Iced Coffee (Yes they have the Pumpkin flavor EARLY!! Yes I am #PumpkinObsessed ) and to get my daughter Emma a Powerade and a Donut. I decided because of the other “blogger” stopping yesterday’s chain that I would #PayItForward to the car behind me. So when I got to the window I told the employee that I wanted to pay for the car behind me. Emma looked at me and said “Your paying for the person behind us?? Aww that’s such a nice thing for your to do!” To which I replied “You should always do acts of kindness for others when you can!” She then leaned over and kissed my cheek. (Gosh I love her <3!!) When I decided to pay for the car behind me I didn’t even take into account that she would notice. This goes to show you what we do in front of our kids matters and why it’s important for parents to #Payitforward or do random acts of kindness when you can.
I’m not telling you this because I want a pat on the back or recognition. I’m tell you this because after the first time it felt so good to #JustBeNice and make someone’s day a bit better that I wanted to do it again. After the first #PayItForward, my husband asked me to bring him coffee at work so I went to 2 more Dunkin Donuts and did the same thing. It doesn’t take much of your time or your money to make a difference in someone else’s life. My small acts of kindness hopefully will have come when they needed it the most and give them the desire to Pay It Forward to someone else. One of my favorite quotes is:
“Be the change you want to see in the world” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
I hope that my example to my children will inspire them to #JustBeNice and #PayItForward for the rest of their lives thus creating a better world!