Tag, you’re it!
It happened to me last night at Shop Class listening to Patience Salgado, my hometown’s own Kindness Girl, talk about how she discovered her purpose in life to be a “Kindness Worker.” And you can’t help but immediately love Patience. She’s real and gentle and beautiful and so very funny – and then she opens her mouth and wisdom comes humbly tumbling out.
What exactly is a Kindness Worker? Patience is a mother of four, a blogger, writer, birth photographer, and an instigator of large-scale happiness mayhem. Through her blog and Guerilla Goodness website, she organizes public projects to bring kindness to those who need it. Like playing ding-dong ditch, leaving flowers and gifts on doorsteps only to “ring and run.” Like leaving love notes thanking garbage men all across the country. Like anonymously writing encouraging notes in sidewalk chalk to ease the nerves of students walking the plank to the first day of school. And like last night at Shop Class, when we launched the latest project: a gigantic, manic, city-wide game of kindness tag, called Tag, You’re It RVA.
Each of the 40 Shop Class attendees left with a few gift tags. In the days and weeks to come, we’ll use those tags to make small acts of kindness in the community: flowers and chocolate on a doorstep or paying for someone’s coffee, leaving with the kindness a numbered gift tag driving back to the project’s Facebook page. Just as in the game of tag, the recipient of the kindness is becomes “IT!” and must then pass both the kindness and the tag to someone else. As more people get tagged, more tags will be handed out around the city and downloadable online. We can track the progress and journey of each tag as they loop back and forth through our city spreading kindness like wildfire.
The acts of kindness will be small and grand and known and anonymous. Some will be planned and some spontaneous and serious and snarky and ridiculous and wonderful. Just imagine those small individual acts are like the flapping butterfly wing that causes a typhoon on the other side of the world.
Talk about creative inspiration! Best. Idea. Ever. Thanks, Kindness Girl!