Twice recently, I saw individuals in a public place and recognized them in these Facebook groups. In one case, she was a woman from a hobby group I belong to, and we were both in a hurry, but she also recognized me and made me smile quickly and wave (and i did the same).
The second case was a gentleman who is a member of several problem type groups. To be honest, he has earned a reputation as a troll.
He’s sarcastic and likes to play devil’s advocate most of the time, but I wouldn’t call him particularly derogatory.
I saw him in a fast food restaurant, and I wasn’t 100% sure I recognized him, but as he left, he turned to me, gave me a radiant smile and walked out. laughing. Later that day, when he did not name me specifically, he posted a message in one of the groups that even though some might say he was a troll, at least someone had now proof that he didn’t eat like that.
I just wonder if in the future I should say hello to a local colleague of a group?
Facebook baffled: Meeting someone in real life that you only know in the online world can be a surreal experience. I would compare him to meeting a local TV presenter. You recognize the person – but where? Once you can place the person accurately, it may be too late.
Yes, if you like mild online interactions, you should definitely say hello. I have been fortunate to make wonderful real-world friendships with people I have met online, and the beauty of community groups is that by the time you meet, you already know a lot about other person.
However, if your gut tells you to stay away, do it.
Dear Amy: My husband and I went to the restaurant. When we asked for the check, we were told that a family who had just left had paid for our dinner.
The waitress said, “I don’t know. They did it.”
I asked if they were frequent customers and the waitress replied no.
We asked for the name on their credit card so we could thank them and were told they had paid in cash.
We cannot understand it. Do you have any idea why someone would do this?
Diners wondering: The motivation behind this is simple: there are kind and generous people in this world who like to perform anonymous acts of kindness.
You and your husband may have reminded them of loved ones or other loved ones in their own lives.
Maybe they just received a little windfall and wanted to celebrate by being generous. Or maybe an anonymous person had recently picked up their check and wanted to “pay it in advance”.
I hope this gesture makes you smile. (It makes me smile.) I also hope you can accept this generosity with an open mind and heart. You can pay for this by performing an anonymous act of kindness to someone else.
Dear Amy: I read the signed letter “Survivor”, who wants to confront his bully.
Like the survivor, I was also a victim of sexual abuse, from the age of 6 years. I didn’t know how to ask for help, and instead shouted for hours and hours until I lost my voice. Also, like the survivor, no one helped me.
I became terrified of everyone and everything until I started to hate everyone and everything. Especially me.
I wish I could tell the person I bullied that it had nothing to do with him and everything to do with me. That I thought I was protecting myself in some way by intimidating him. This is how I kept people away from me. I think of her everyday.
I try to live every day now by being nice. After years of alcoholism, I finally became sober and try to help others in their sobriety.
Also a survivor: In my response, I pointed out that bullies are often victims themselves. Congratulations on your own healing.