I’ve continued jotting down some of the interesting things I’ve seen since writing the first and second “people watching” posts. Just like I mentioned last time… Every day I am reminded of just how wonderful many strangers are around me. I am given examples that I am able to learn from and live up to. I’m also reminded just how far we all have to go.

MADE ME HAPPY: I was at the movie theater and I watched as a little girl laid her cheek on her daddy’s head while riding on his shoulders in the line to buy popcorn.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I was at the movie theater and I watched as a man dragged his small child into the bathroom stall and gave her a spanking while scolding her about talking during movies.

MADE ME HAPPY: I received an email from a reader telling me he was so thankful for The Real Dad Rules because of the greatly increased motivation he has found after reading it.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I received an email from a reader telling me I know nothing about parenting and have no right to write a book and that he’ll never read a single word of it.

MADE ME HAPPY: I watched as a grandpa pushed his granddaughter on the swings at the park.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I watched as a dad sat with his laptop open while his kids played at the park.

MADE ME HAPPY: A friendly reader approached me at the grocery store and I got to know a little bit about her and her life as a single mom.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I was at a different grocery store with Noah and when I looked over somebody was taking a picture of us with their camera phone. I smiled at the woman, and instead of smiling back, she shoved the phone in her purse and disappeared around the corner.

MADE ME HAPPY: I was at the airport with Noah asleep on my shoulder, and there were no seats left. Another passenger could tell he was getting heavy for me and he insisted that I take his seat.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I was on an airport shuttle and decided I was “too tired” and “too worn out” to give my seat to any of the standing women.

MADE ME HAPPY: I was walking through the mall when somebody approached me holding a five dollar bill that had fallen out of my pocket as I had reached in for something else.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I couldn’t help but laugh as a group of teenagers wiped poop on the bottom of a dollar bill and stuck it to the ground.

MADE ME HAPPY: I made good enough friends with a waiter that we all decided to hang out sometime and we exchanged contact information.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I was rather rude to a persistent door-to-door salesman who wanted me to buy some meat from the back of his truck.

MADE ME HAPPY: I watched as a man gave each of his six kids a dollar bill and let them take turns putting the money in the collection box for the local children’s hospital.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I listened as a woman in front of me became insulted when asked to add a dollar to her order for the local children’s hospital. She reprimanded the cashier and “educated” her about how corrupt and wasteful such charities were.

MADE ME HAPPY: I watched Noah pick his nose and for the first time (without me telling him to), put it in a tissue instead of eating it.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I gagged as a grown man in the car next to me, after digging to China, pulled something out of his nose and began flicking his hand repeatedly trying to get it off, laughing while the woman sitting next to him was screaming in hysterics.

MADE ME HAPPY: I went to a drive-in movie and saw a mom snuggled in the back of a pick-up with four of her kids, eating snacks and laughing while we waited for the movie to start.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I went to a drive-in movie and saw an older teenager repeatedly and “playfully” grab at his girlfriend’s breasts even though she kept demanding that he stop.

MADE ME HAPPY: I moved things around on my calendar so that I could go to a little school thing for Noah even though I really wanted to be doing other things for work instead.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I purposefully scheduled things on my calendar so that I wouldn’t have to help an acquaintance move.

MADE ME HAPPY: I put aside an entire day with no electronics, no work, and no phone to spend with my son doing happy things.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT: I spent the better part of an entire day ignoring Noah, nodding my head when he talked to me, and not really listening to much of what he said to me at all.

Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing Observing

PS. Using this same format (just for fun), what are some of the beautiful things you’ve seen lately, and what are some of the things that need a little improvement?