Thursday, June 6, 2013

I Call Him Napkin Man

I know, I'm weird. You won't even understand from the pics why I came up with the name - I'll have to explain.

Some time in the last year or two, when we were driving around on the opposite side of town, we noticed something strange. It was a man standing on the corner at a busy intersection - waving & swirling his hands in the air - hands which held napkins {or paper towels? or handkerchiefs?}. He had headphones on and was obviously doing the swirling to the music he was listening to. It was a rather odd sight.

As we drive around in that area of town, we see him again...and again. And I call him Napkin Man. The more I drive to that part of town {kiddo started tennis classes}, the more I observe Napkin Man. I realize that he's not always on the same corner - he switches corners in an area of a few blocks. He's not just a crazy man who ends up on the corner waving his napkins around - he's there with a purpose. He rides a nice bike to his corner of the day and brings a backpack with food & water. When it's hot, he takes plenty of breaks and sits in the shade. He does not have anything out asking for money.

I've never spoken to Napkin Man, but I've made some assumptions just based on my observations. He considers his napkin-waving on the corner almost like a job, or a duty. He prepares for it, knows which corner he's going to, and stays there for at least a couple of hours, if not more. I believe he does this simply to spread joy to the busy people driving by.* If you saw the amazingly big smile and sheer joy on his face while he waves the napkins to his music, you'd believe the same.

This is just what I'm talking about when I say "stop and smell the chocolates" - take a moment to appreciate the little blessings right in front of you! Will you drive quickly by Napkin Man and mutter to yourself about the crazy person on the corner or will you take a moment to see the joy and smile back?

I always smile when I see him. And I still call him Napkin Man even though he's upgraded to streamers {even more awesome}. :)

*Gotta love the internet - found a story about him from last year. His name is Clifford and he's a disabled senior. He dances on the corner to alleviate his arthritis. Though the story doesn't mention it, I still believe he does it on the busy corners to spread some happiness at the same time!

Have a blessed day friends and don't forget to look for the little blessings all around you!


  1. How cool is that? I almost always wave to the people who hold signs and stuff out by the road. Especially when you can tell they are having a good time and not staring at their iphone or something.
    Big if you walked by and sneezed I wonder if he would offer you his tissue size hugs to you.
    Loved this story my friend. Keep em' coming.

  2. We have totally seen him driving around R! Our family always commented that he seemed so happy to be dancing with his napkins. And I am so glad you found out more info about him. Great story, Lisa!


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