Thursday, May 21, 2009


Illustration from The Diabetic Plan - When Your Blood Glucose Is Too High or Too Low webpage

How do I write this without coming off as preachy? I'm not sure, so I'm just going to write it.

I spent the day in Manhattan. I started off with an interview with a recruiting agency and then kicked around the city until it was time for a networking event in the evening. I didn't get back to Philadelphia until it was almost 11pm.

When I made it to the platform, I saw a man sitting down on the platform rather than on the benches. It was sort of odd. I initially thought that maybe he was drunk. It's common to see middle-aged or older men on the Seoul subway or trains drunk and on their way home after a night out with the folks from work. We definitely see drunk people on public transit in the States too. The train was set to arrive in a few minutes, and I noticed the man was having trouble getting up. I also noticed that the benches on the platform were full.

My first instinct was to help him. However, I had to think about it. What if he was drunk?

Good for me, my positive side kicked in because the competing thought was "what if the man is diabetic like me and just has low blood sugar?" There have been a couple of times where I've had very bad insulin reactions or hypoglycemia to the point that I was almost unconscious and people have thought I was drunk or sleepy rather than in the middle of a medical emergency.

I asked the man if he needed a hand getting up. Sure enough, he was sober and he did. He then explained that he had a really bad knee. Doctors have given him various explanations, but the bottom line is he has trouble with it. I explained that being diabetic, I've had people assume I was drunk when actually I needed help. Of course, people were looking. I made sure to say it loud enough so that the people around us to could hear. I do think the point must be made: appearances are often deceiving.

The man was really thankful that I helped him. The train approached and as we went to get on, he went out of his way to shake my hand and to thank me again.

It felt good. I learned. It was just reinforcement to think it through when I start to act on a negative assumption. I also hope the people around me learned that point too.

Okay, g'night.

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  1. That was a good thing that you did Regina as I know others would've just walked by. Nevertheless I am in shock as I just read the former President of South Korea named Roh(I forgot the rest)committed suicide by jumping off of a cliff near his rural home.

    I know he was facing bribery charges but I didn't think he would kill himself over it or maybe there is more to the story. Again thanks for the article

  2. First, you're welcome. I just try to blog the stuff thst touches me, and this situation did.

    No comment re Roh. May he now rrst in peace.

  3. Er... "rest". Commenting using my Blackberry does up the potential for typos ;)

  4. Good for you. I usually help out if I can, as I would hope someone would come to the aide of my family members if they ever need it.

    I remember the first time I stopped on the side of the road (Laurel Canyon) in L.A. to help an old lady change her tire. My co-workers, that I happened to be driving over the hill for some network program testing in the Valley, freaked out and nearly forced me to keep on driving. We had plenty of time, and I reasoned that I would hope someone would help my grandmother if she needed it. As you can see by my moniker, my small town Texas upbringing sort of clashed with the superficialness of lala land which eventually led me out of there even with the mostly gorgeous weather, beaches, and people.

  5. Yeah, hell, I was born and raised in L.A. and I have a deep dislike for the attitude in that city ;) Generally, the attitude is so on things that don't matter that it's hard to find nice folks there. Between that and the requirement that I must own a car, I'll pass on ever moving back to my hometown.

  6. Yeah, the amount of time I lost commuting was obscene, and probably the biggest reason for leaving a job I really liked most of the time. Also, America's individualist mentality does make it hard to provide decent public transportation as our cities, and nation, are so vast and spread out. Not like the row after row of apartment complexes one sees over here in South Korea which is very compact in comparison.

    I did eventually find some great people there in the Southland, but they were few and far between.

  7. You're spot on. I like tall buildings and urban environments. Good for me that also usually means efficient mass transit.

    There are great folks in L.A. I count many of them to be friends ;)


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