Monday, February 1, 2010

Just a Banana?

Today's the day: I've gotta make three sales or this job isn't worth it for me. Why bother? Because you never know what can happen if you just keep trying! I'll go check out those big apartment buildings down the street....

Figures, they don't pay their electric bills so I can't sell them Direct Energy. That bench here in the courtyard looks comfy; I think I'll take a break and figure out what to do next....

The tall, black woman jolts me out of my reverie. "Are you a Jehovah's Witness?" she asks. I guess I look like one from the way I'm dressed, all in black with a businesslike coat, skirt, and hat.
"No," I answer. "I'm Jewish."

We get into a very pleasant conversation, and I even take a look at some literature. See, I take to heart the words of Pirkei Avot (Chapters of the Fathers) that say: "Who is wise? The one who learns from every person." I obviously don't agree with their Jesus thing, but perhaps there is something I can learn from this encounter. She tells me that at Jehovah's Witnesses' conventions, everyone greets each other like they're family. She says that Jehovah's Witnesses can always count on each other when they need someone to do a kindness for them, such as a place to stay. I exclaim, "Wow, we Jews could really learn from you guys!"

Now we're sitting in the kitchen at her apartment discussing her electric bills. Turns out she has three separate accounts! Maybe I'll close three today miraculously! We have to wait for her daughter to come home, though, but in the meantime we chat some more and she offers me a banana. Just a simple banana, from a bunch sitting on the counter, but I very much appreciate it, because I of course can't eat any prepared food from her kitchen and I've been walking around all afternoon. So she practices what she preaches. Yes, it is polite to offer food to a guest, but in all my time doing residential sales, I was only offered to come in once (I didn't because I'm not really supposed to) and most of the time it was just the opposite. In other words, I'm much more likely to get the door slammed on my face, never mind a banana.

So I am wise this time and learn that there is, in fact, a group of people who are kind to each other because they believe that that is what G-d wants most of all from people. I do not get to sign up her and her daughter in the end, but I do get a banana and some good food for thought....

Over a week later, as I am making banana bread ( ) for Shabbat because I don't have a job to be at on Friday anymore, I smile fondly at the memory, hoping that I can learn to be a truly kind person ( ) and that I can really help people with my next job.


  1. you are a kind person already, and the job thing will work out, because you are a capable and caring person

  2. Thanks for your story Sarah. What you were told is true. I've experienced it many times. No matter where you are in the world, it's like an instant bond with a family member. Thanks for the links too. Very interesting. I hope you do well on your new job!

  3. HI Sara, I like your blog! Lovely story and all too true. I still go to Weight Watchers but on Saturday (when of course I wouldn't run into you unfortunately). Listening to everyone chatter about food before the meeting started, I just smiled. Here are people after my heart. We love food and we're not ashamed of it. The difference is learning how to love it in a healthy way. I'll check out your banana bread recipe. How many points per slice? :) - Amala

  4. You are a kind and very capable person, and the right job will come. Glad you are back to writing this blog, i really enjoy it.

  5. Thank you all! :)

    Amala, I don't know how many points. I just recently rejoined Weight Watchers (I wasn't allowed to do it while pregnant) but I've never been able to do the points thing successfully. I'm going to go back to Simply Filling, cuz that worked the best for me last time.