No Stupidity in Sight

‘Twas a fortnight before Christmas when all through the city, lots of people were stirring with no sign of stupidity….

It’s rare, but true. Sometimes this happens. Like the Perseid meteor shower, a Pitt-Jolie-Aniston-free headline day, a clearance sale on last season’s Louis Vuitton wallets or my successfully writing poetry. I went out among the masses, or at least among a scattered, but determined crowd, without any run-ins with stupers (short as you know, for unfalteringly stupid persons). And I liked what I found.

As many of my long term and especially dear readers know, I am an errant public library volunteer. I really do want to help. Really. However, I have trouble getting myself in there to nobly display my willingness. So today I did triple time to make up for my absences. Each and every time the wonderful librarians see me (none of whom is a spinster or even remotely spinster-like), they act wholeheartedly delighted, making me feel like they’d been awaiting my arrival with bated breath and fingers crossed. As I helped with the check-in of books (I am not allowed to check-out; that requires sweeter, more specialized skills), I overheard the young (twenty-three-year old) librarian, Marcia, conversing with an elderly, friendly chap, Herbert, who asked her what she wanted for Christmas. She hesitated a moment and replied,

“I’d like a pair of socks.”

Herbert looked astonished and asked, “What else?”

Marcia explained that was all. When pressed, she added that two pairs would be nice. She said she felt like she had everything she needed already. Marcia does not come from a wealthy family. She lives with her parents (yes, she still lives at home and yes, I am still slightly bitter over my last post) who work on a large ranch.

In this day of excess, superficiality and perpetual need, it was sobering and comforting to find a person in her twenties not longing for the latest designer purse or diamond earrings to show off to her friends (note to self: do you really need to have that Ferrari Scaglietti?). The best part about Marcia is that every time I see her, she looks and acts like the happiest person on earth. This is not to say that wanting things is wrong or makes for unhappiness. It’s imperative not to be consumed by wanting or we may become shortsighted, even blinded, missing opportunities to seize happiness.

I assisted also in the library book sale, where everyone gladly, enthusiastically insisted on overpaying for books in order to help the library. I didn’t come across one stuper attempting to stiff the library or argue that they were being overcharged. I was overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of all buyers, no matter their ages, shapes or sizes.

When we intentionally set out to do good works by helping others, we not only help ourselves become better persons, but we set the stage for our personal happiness. If ever we feel overwhelmed by obstacles, I suggest finding a person or organization who could use some assistance and chipping in. It revives and clarifies our purpose in life and provides tremendous satisfaction. Most importantly, it ensures the virtual absence of stupidity.

Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting a few drops on yourself ~ Emerson

We are formed by our thoughts.


Stupidity is a thief to the mind, robbing it of careful thought.

7 Responses to “No Stupidity in Sight”

  1. Sarah says:

    It’s so nice to read of people who are kind and generous. Setting a good example for stupers!

  2. Jessica Bern says:

    This is exactly why I volunteer in an ER at a local hospital. After a very long weekend, single parenting a toddler, all I want to do is sleep but I get way more out of going there and giving back. People always ask my why I do it and I can only think, why not?

  3. Ferd says:

    This one goes into my “Keli’s Greatest Hits” folder.

    “Wanting,” lusting, obsessing, and addiction are scary words for me, and things I work hard at avoiding.

    You wrote BEAUTIFULLY about the opposite, a sense of generosity, and the happiness that comes from giving without expecting anything in return.

    Thank you once again for your example, and for the clarity and purity of your thinking!
    Keli, you’re the greatest!
    : )

  4. Rebecca says:

    This is very true. I volunteer at the Humane Society and each and everytime I’m not only making the animals happy, but myself too. And the shelter is basically stuper free (at least the animals are. I’m not so sure about a couple of the people)!

  5. New Diva says:

    What a lovely post. Good for you for managing a stuper free day! My son asked for very little this year too. He is 10 and basically said, I kind of have everything I need, so I’m good. It made me smile very big! We are also doing a project in both kids classes for the local food pantry, it is also making me smile and the kids are really excited too!

  6. Annie T says:

    I hope Marcia has a wonderful Christmas and gets all the socks she wants!

    This was a beautiful post, Keli.

    I hope you and your family have a marvellous Christmas. XX

  7. Keli says:

    I know. I love hearing of kind words and deeds!
    It feels good, doesn’t it?
    Thank you so much for your kind words! I always feel a little lift when I read your comments. I appreciate it!
    When we help others, we’re really helping ourselves, aren’t we?
    New Diva:
    Thank you! What a wonderful young man you’ve raised! I’m sure your project will be a big success!
    I do too!
    Thank you, my dear. I wish the same to you – May this be your best Christmas ever!

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