Unknown — A number of years back…

A number of years back, my six-year-old son and I had gone shopping at one of those giant discount toy stores with toys piled to the ceiling.  We had just come around the corner of an aisle when I saw a young, long-haired bearded man in a wheelchair.  He must have been in some terrible accident because both his legs were missing and his face was badly scarred.  Just then my six-year-old saw him too and said in a loud voice, “Look at that man, Momma!”  I did my normal mother thing and tried to shush my son, telling him it was not polite to point; but my son gave a hard tug, broke free from my hand, and went running down the aisle to the man in the wheelchair.  He stood right in front of him and said in a loud voice, “What a cool dude earring, man!  Where did you get such a neat earring?”  The young man broke into a grin that lit up his face.  He was so taken aback by the compliment that he just glowed with happiness, and the two of them stood there talking awhile about his earring and other “cool stuff.”
It made a life-long impression on me.  For I had seen only a horribly scarred man in a wheelchair, but my six-year-old saw a man with a cool dude earring.

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