A Story from The Costco Gas Pump

As anyone who gets gas at Costco knows, the wait is long and people’s patience often wears thin. I’m third in line now, with the two cars in front of me each pulling up to their respective pumps.

The first guy gets out. He’s young, black, and wearing a mask.

The second, I’m frustrated with because he’s taking much longer to get out of his car. I see his door open and two feet slowly touch the ground, one and then another. He’s at least 90 years old, white, and contrastingly, not wearing a mask. 

The first guy is noticing him too. He doesn’t exactly look steady.

Then the first guy begins emphatically waving down a gas station attendant. I know he’s seeking help for the older one because I watch him peek around the pump for an attendant and then quickly back to the guy. As we both now wait for assistance, he appears to keep his eyes on the older gentleman, as if standing at the ready, should he need some help. 

My own eyes start to well up. The first guy isn’t in a rush to get gas and get gone, like I am. He’s present, and caring for a fellow human being. He doesn’t care that the guy is white. He doesn’t care that he’s not wearing a mask. He cares because he sees a man in need. 

If I were a news journalist, perhaps my headline would be, “Young Masked Black Man Comes to Old Maskless White Man’s Aid at Costco Gas Pump.” 

But do any of these details really matter? In today’s times, yes. They shouldn’t. But because we’ve been so increasingly divided over the past 18 months, we rarely hear these stories. We see them all the time, but we barely acknowledge them, and we certainly don’t hear about them. Sadly, these stories don’t sell. 

I think they should, though. Because to me, this story is what America (and humanity) is all about. 

Dragonfly (A Poem)

He says, “I hope you’re doing better
then the day the good Lord called me up.
You’ll be alright.
I’m at peace. I’ve joined forever.
You’re gonna love it here.


I never left you.
No, you were never left behind.
See, now I’m always by your side.”

How to Make My Sister Happy (A Poem to Her Fiancé)

With my sister’s wedding now just ten days away, I wanted to share with you all a poem I wrote for her Fiancé, my future Brother-in-Law, on how to make her happy. I think you will find this poem is applicable to many relationships, not just theirs. And perhaps, at the very least, it will warm your heart.

How To Make My Sister Happy

First off, she loves you,
so just stick around.
When she gets carried away,
you hold her down.

She likes fancy things
so every once in a while,
splurge a little on her.
Gifts make her smile.

Listen to her.
Consider her needs.
Put yourself second
and remember to breath.

When she asks for space,
respect and believe her.
The love you will gain
is based on how you treat her.

So treat her with kindness
and forgive her with ease.
Enjoy every moment.
Love her good for me, please.


Why Nice Guys (and Girls) Really Do Finish Last

Have you ever wondered why you’re always the first to apologize after an argument, even when you know you’ve done nothing wrong? Are you baffled by the fact that the manipulative guy who sits next to you at work got the promotion when you didn’t, even though you know you deserved it? Why are you the one who was always bullied at school? Why have you once again allowed your “friend” to borrow money knowing darn well they will never pay you back? I think we have all, at some point or another, asked ourselves these questions. The fact is, in our rapidly changing world, nice guys (and girls) really do finish last.

It’s been a hard realization for me to come to. The world isn’t a nice place. Sure, it’s lovely and certainly, it can be romantic, but nice? Hardly. As a self-proclaimed nice girl in my mid twenties, I’m just now learning to face this difficult reality and I sincerely believe it’s one of the most important truths we have to face coming into adulthood.

I’ve spent much of my life living out traditional values such as, work hard and be rewarded; be honest and loyal; be patient, caring, and giving; good things come to those who wait; trust in human nature and the goodness of your fellow man; give people the benefit of the doubt. Sure, these are all ways that the world should work, if everyone had a clear moral compass. But the fact is, many people do not, and this number is increasing daily.

Perhaps you’ve been like me, living with rose-colored glasses that are distorting your view of what’s really happening around you and to you. It’s time we take our blinders off. Without vigilant awareness of our surroundings, we will get mugged (metaphorically or literally). And so, we must be realists. Kind realists.

  1. Life is a game: be a player or get played. Whether it’s life experiences, mental illness, drugs, greed, or a score of other reasons, there are people in this world who operate from a place of exploitiveness. And you will undoubtedly cross paths with many of them. In fact, chances are, there are people in your life right now who will hurt you if you let them. The key is watching out for people like this. Don’t take everyone for face value. Search for what drives the people in your life. And surround yourself with those who share your moral compass.
  1. Competition at work, in relationships, and even in families is inevitable, so you better get your game face on. So much of life is a competition. We may wish that it wasn’t, but it is. If you step back and look at it, it’s clear. You’ve competed for your mate, your job, your friends, and social position. And now, you must fight to protect those things. Like it or not, we must continually and boldly confront our world head on, even the ugly and nasty sides of it.
  1. People are looking out for their own interests. And you should be too. Do you know what the most glorious word in the human language is to anyone alive today? According to relationship and life skills expert, Dale Carnegie, it’s their own name. People like themselves. And as a whole, humanity is selfish. While some people are wondering why life isn’t fair, others are seizing the moment. They’re not timid. They’re bold enough to step up and ask for what they want. And they ask again and again until they get it. The point is, if you don’t look out for your own best interests, who will?
  1. You train people how to treat you. In other words, people will treat you how you let them. In relationships, and life, you have to hold your own. You can do this while still being as sweet as a peach. Just remember, inside every peach there is a strong pit. And there is no way to hold your own while simultaneously accepting rude behavior. For example, there is no need to explain the obvious when someone is disrespectful towards you. In the words of Sherry Argov, “Truly powerful people don’t explain why they want respect. They simply don’t engage anyone who doesn’t give it to them.”
  1. Doing unto others as you wish they would do unto you doesn’t always get you what you want, need, or deserve. Again, this relates to seeing the world as it is and realizing that not everyone is as nice as you. Let’s replace the old adage with, “Do unto others, after they have proven they are worthy.”
  1. Only in a fairytale world does love conquer all. It’s a good story to tell, and it’s how we all wish the world was, but it is not the world we live in. A more accurate and relevant depiction might be, “Love conquers you, when you give all.”
  1. We are all taught to “love thy neighbor,” but perhaps, you ought to love yourself first. Then your neighbor will be much happier living beside you. You are no use to anyone unless you first help yourself. So remember this the next time you find yourself bending over backwards to meet others’ needs while neglecting your own.
  1. It is better to give and receive. Ever notice how nice people seem to give, give, and give yet they get nothing in return? This is because nice people invest in others, even when others aren’t investing in them. The result? They feel depleted, used, drained, and exhausted.

There are all kinds of people in this world, ranging from the sheltered and naïve, to the savvy and street smart. I want you to be the latter. And power begins by having a crystal clear view of how this world really works, while acknowledging that the world rewards action. We need to learn the actions that will help us to get what we want out of life and then, protect it.

Does this mean that you have to be a jerk in order to survive and thrive in our world? Of course not. But it does mean that you have to be selective with your time, energy, and kindness. The fault is not with you, nice folks, but with the world. To create the loving, respectful life that you desire, you have to know the rules of the game, and play by them. So let’s learn from the jerks without emulating them. They say, “All is well that ends well.” But reality is, all is well for those who cover their ends well. Happy playing!


The crisp, sweet smell of fall reminds me of this time a couple years ago; a uniquely sweet period of healing in my life. I am reminded that stillness, presence, and grace are all powerful tools of healing that we should routinely practice, even (and especially) if we think we don’t need to.

A Poem About How God Loves Me Through My Dog


So cute and cuddly
How I’m blessed by such a thing
A fuzzy ball of fur and joy
Who gives me cause to sing
A funny little love bug
Who stares at me for clues
Yet in his eyes, I see No Thing
‘Cause in his eyes, is You.

A Letter From My Mother

My most precious child,

If there is any lesson I would want to leave with you, it is to love yourself. Find peace with who you are and don’t look outside yourself for acceptance and love. Find it deep within yourself and treasure it always. When you love yourself like that, you will know the kind of love I will always have for you.

Love, Mom

He and I

When words run dry,

he does not try,

nor do I.

We are on par.

He just is,

I just am

and we just are.

-Lang Leav

A Poem by Christopher Poindexter

“They say

love will not


that it has no

happy ending,

but I say the hell

with what they say,

let us burn

these fears down

to the ground and

we will dance

like children

in the ashes.”

-Christopher Poindexter

A Love Poem

I knew

as soon as I saw him

that I’d spend

far too long

trying to write a poem

as beautiful as him.