February 12, 2011

Always Make ‘Em Smile

Day 43: 27.8 miles/1:37

“It only takes a moment to be pleasant to someone; but, it may be the smile they needed to change their day.”

My children have always gotten a kick out of how easily I can simply say something to a stranger to briefly and simply engage them. It is something I have always done and I enjoy it. I like to make people smile. It makes me smile and I like being happy.

This thought was prompted by a positive exchange I had with a motorist at a traffic light on today’s ride. We both pulled up to a red light in the left turn lane. He was in his convertible with the top down and me on my bike. Here’s how the conversation went:

“Good morning”

“How you doing? Great day for a bike ride.”

“It is. Great day to be riding with top down. This is why we come to Arizona.”

“True. Where you from?”


“I’m from New York” (light turns green, he smiles and waves) “Have a great day”

How hard was that? I could have minded my own business. Instead, I exchanged a few positive, friendly, energetic words. And, it resulted in a smile and a wave. Mission accomplished.

Here are a couple of other examples:

  • On one particular route I ride, there is woman, easily in her eighties, riding her big, old two-wheeler usually wearing some scarf and big floppy riding hat. Every time I ride towards her she greets me with this big smile and happy wave. I always wave and smile back. I look forward to seeing her. Her energy is contagious. She always makes me smile. Mission accomplished.
  • Yesterday I was at one of my favorite coffee places. One of the younger girls there was wearing her hair in a manner that woman do when they didn’t have time to mess with it, yet need to make it look decent. (Guys if you pay attention, you would know these things.) Anyway, she pulled it off. She had a cool bandana with a nice, big plastic daisy. She looked great. So I quietly called to her as she walked by, “Caitelyn, I really like your hair today.” A big smile, a thank you and off she went. Mission accomplished.

A smile, a wave, a pleasant good morning to people I pass on the sidewalks or running while I am riding are all ways to share a little positive juice. It only takes a moment to say something nice or to be pleasant. But, it just may be the thing they needed to get their day headed in the right direction. Make someone smile today, you will feel better for it.

About Dave Cooke

Dave Cooke is a dad on a mission. His mission is to help parents get control of their lives over the powerful, destructive influences of a child's addiction. As the father of a son in a ten year heroin battle, Dave knows all to well the challenges parents and families face. He also knows there is a way to find peace in the chaos. It is his mission to help parents discover their path to a healthier, balanced life even if a child's active addiction is still part of their daily journey.