This picture on NBC News rattled our collective conscience. How could there be a man living on the streets of New York without food, or a pair of shoes? New York Police Officer Lawrence Di Primo could have run him off, or had him picked up for vagrancy.He made a very different choice.
This EXTRAordinary man went to a shoe store, found winter boots to fit the homeless man and then forked over his own money. He was heralded as a hero. Many called what he did “a random act of kindness”.
I believe kindness is never random. It is at the center of who we are, who we choose to be. Di Primo made a quick choice, clean up the streets of New York, or be a kind caring person who helps others. He instinctively was kind. If we check into the deeds of Di Primo I am sure we would find that this is not the first time he has reached out to help someone. He made a choice to be EXTRAordinary long ago. (Yes, I know, the man has hidden the shoes because he thought they were worth too much money to wear. That does not diminish how one policeman did an extraordinary thing.)
We celebrate Di Primo’s example, his willingness to give and take care, when it is accepted that we just walk on by, or shudder at the sight. Di Primo is extraordinary. It is a life choice, not a random happening.
Connie Timpson is the author of “You Are EXTRAordinary – 3 E’s to an Extraordinary Life now available on Amazon.