Sharing Gummy Bears With Strangers

Public transit is amazing. To think of how many people it brings together for the common goal of getting from Point A to Point B to me is mind-boggling. I really love it.

Now, that being said, I keep to myself. I’m a girl in the city. I know that the big city isn’t always the safest place. And I happen to be a bit of an introvert. I’m much happier listening to “The Killers” than I am striking up random conversation with people I never will meet again.

Today while waiting at the bus stop, I saw a man with a bag. A pouch of Gummy Bears to be precise. I noticed the obvious packaging and was immediately transported to a happier place. A place where Gummy Bears are a shared experience. Friends exchanged them as loving tokens. They connect people of all ages, races and faiths. Gummy Bears should be a part of our New Foreign Policy. Things would get done. Bottom line.

I wanted a Gummy Bear.

But I didn’t know this man. This man didn’t know me. We are not friends. We aren’t even acquaintances. I’m another passing face. One of many he’s encountered in the day. As he was to me.

There were two ways to handle this situation.

1) Ignore him and his tasty sweet confection.

2) Ask the stranger for some candy.

What could go wrong?

But then I paused. I couldn’t well ask a bizarre man for candy. He’d think I was a loony. And he very well could have done something terrible to those ursine figures of delight.  And my skepticism was well founded.

Now keep in mind, I’m a 90’s kid. The famed generation known for over-protective parents and an attitude about life that is…to put bluntly unique. We grew up based on the fear and paranoia our parents instilled in us. Danger was around every corner. Nothing was sacred. Everyone was a threat. Things, even nice looking things, can and will kill you. This is the age of razor blades in Halloween candy, after all.

But I don’t believe things were always like this. We millennials are a bit egocentric in that regard. We struggle to imagine a time before ours when you could accept something from a stranger and it not clearly be laced with something deadly or vile.

An apple given to you by a kind neighbor only a few years ago was accept with glad tidings. Not the item of immense speculation only to be discarded.

The moral of the story? Yea, obviously don’t take candy from strangers. And use some honest common sense. But not everything need be met with such great suspicion. Maybe good people really do exist. Honest people. People who wouldn’t want to cause you harm just for the sake of it. And not to say that there aren’t people out there that would. Yes, keep that in mind always. There are bad people out there. It’s a tragic reality of the human condition But this has made me consider some of my barriers.

What do I off the top of mind label as “suspicious” or “not trustworthy”.

If the man had only offered me a Gummy Bear…

Oh well, a girl can dream.

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