A little warmup penbrush/watercolor Courfeyrac.
A little warmup penbrush/watercolor Courfeyrac.
“Some years ago, I was stuck on a crosstown bus in New York City during rush hour. Traffic was barely moving. The bus was filled with cold, tired people who were deeply irritated—with one another; with the rainy, sleety weather; with the world itself. Two men barked at each other about a shove that might or might not have been intentional. A pregnant woman got on, and nobody offered her a seat. Rage was in the air; no mercy would be found here.
But as the bus approached Seventh Avenue, the driver got on the intercom. “Folks,” he said, “I know you’ve had a rough day and you’re frustrated. I can’t do anything about the weather or traffic, but here’s what I can do. As each one of you gets off the bus, I will reach out my hand to you. As you walk by, drop your troubles into the palm of my hand, okay? Don’t take your problems home to your families tonight—just leave ‘em with me. My route goes right by the Hudson River, and when I drive by there later, I’ll open the window and throw your troubles in the water. Sound good?”
It was as if a spell had lifted. Everyone burst out laughing. Faces gleamed with surprised delight. People who’d been pretending for the past hour not to notice each other’s existence were suddenly grinning at each other like, is this guy serious?
Oh, he was serious.
At the next stop—just as promised—the driver reached out his hand, palm up, and waited. One by one, all the exiting commuters placed their hand just above his and mimed the gesture of dropping something into his palm. Some people laughed as they did this, some teared up—but everyone did it. The driver repeated the same lovely ritual at the next stop, too. And the next. All the way to the river.
We live in a hard world, my friends. Sometimes it’s extra difficult to be a human being. Sometimes you have a bad day. Sometimes you have a bad day that lasts for several years. You struggle and fail. You lose jobs, money, friends, faith, and love. You witness horrible events unfolding in the news, and you become fearful and withdrawn. There are times when everything seems cloaked in darkness. You long for the light but don’t know where to find it.
But what if you are the light? What if you’re the very agent of illumination that a dark situation begs for?
That’s what this bus driver taught me—that anyone can be the light, at any moment. This guy wasn’t some big power player. He wasn’t a spiritual leader. He wasn’t some media-savvy “influencer.” He was a bus driver—one of society’s most invisible workers. But he possessed real power, and he used it beautifully for our benefit.
When life feels especially grim, or when I feel particularly powerless in the face of the world’s troubles, I think of this man and ask myself, What can I do, right now, to be the light? Of course, I can’t personally end all wars, or solve global warming, or transform vexing people into entirely different creatures. I definitely can’t control traffic. But I do have some influence on everyone I brush up against, even if we never speak or learn each other’s name. How we behave matters because within human society everything is contagious—sadness and anger, yes, but also patience and generosity. Which means we all have more influence than we realize.
No matter who you are, or where you are, or how mundane or tough your situation may seem, I believe you can illuminate your world. In fact, I believe this is the only way the world will ever be illuminated—one bright act of grace at a time, all the way to the river.“
I’m not writing anything at the moment, so Les Mis is as good as any! I’m. So rusty, though, what a throwback this fandom is.
Courfeyrac pays him no heed, throwing clothes into a satchel with ill-disguised rage. He shoves past Enjolras to his desk, sweeping all the papers into the bag with one fell swoop.
If Enjolras couldn’t already tell that something was very, very wrong, the fact that Courfeyrac doesn’t seem to care about the fact that ink is rapidly spreading all over his favorite linen shirt, staining the insides of his bag.
“Go away, Enjolras,” Courfeyrac snaps. “I don’t have time for revolutionary business.” He spins around, snatches an errant sheaf of papers off the floor and shoves it into Enjolras’s chest, making him stumble backwards. “Here. Your maps.”
“Courfeyrac, stop.” Enjolras snaps his arm forward before Courfeyrac can rush off again. “Tell me what’s happened.”
Courfeyrac is livid, his normally sunny face twisted into a snarl. “You don’t care,” he hisses. “You don’t care, nobody cares, just leave.”
“No.” He tightens the fingers around Courfeyrac’s list.
“Do you honestly think I care for nothing but politics?” Enjolras asks quietly. “That I’d do anything for my beloved Patria and nothing at all for my beloved friend?”
Courfeyrac sags in his grip, and Enjolras leads him to sink into the chaise, wordless. He waits.
“It’s my family,” Courfeyrac whispers, licking his dry lips. “There’s trouble.”
“You have to leave.”
Courfeyrac nods. “I’m sorry.”
“Well.” Enjolras looks at him solemnly. “I will do my best to throw documents into the fireplace in a fit of dramatics while you are gone.”
Courfeyrac bursts into laughter, and the room brims with sunshine.
I have watched
Les Misérables over the weekend! It is REALLY a classic. The set design, the lighting, the music, the themes… oh! A classic!
My fav. barricade boy is definitely the charismatic and passionate leader Enjolras!
“Let others rise to take our place until the earth is FREE!”
aah this is so cute! I love the revolutionary blush .:D
(I also had a prompt from @mayleavestars for JMBR coffee shop in space, so clearly I had to do space, coffee shop, and meeting the parents all at once!)
Joly looks up in alarm when Bossuet
skids into the shop during an afternoon lull, his momentum finally
stopped by the counter when he runs into it and promptly bangs his
personal communicator down on it. “I am ruining our weekend plans,”
“Did you forget an appointment
again?” Grantaire calls from the kitchen, where he’s making a batch
of his moon-famous muffins. “I keep telling you, we really need to
start a calendar for all of us so when we get Bahorel and Jehan to
cover for a day or two we can make the most of it.”
“I got a message from my parents,”
says Bossuet, eyes wide, and Joly freezes, because Bossuet adores his
parents, so it must be bad news. Musichetta, who has been ignoring
them with enviable serenity from where she’s planning out the week’s
menu, looks up, so it must be serious. “They bought tickets here
without telling me and they’re arriving this afternoon. On the next
shuttle. Mom sent the message from Earthport so I wouldn’t have time
to prepare myself.”
That is … not disastrous. But it is
definitely very nerve-wracking. Joly takes a deep breath and can
almost feel Musichetta and Grantaire taking one in tandem. He
recovers from his deep breath first. “Um, can I ask why?”
“She said something about bringing
the earth to the moon colony if the moon colony won’t come to earth,
but really it’s to meet you two. Well, three, I keep telling them you
aren’t technically our boyfriend, R, but you’re my roommate, so they
i hope lee jordan carried on potterwatch after the war
like, just reporting on the incredibly mundane things that harry is doing, interspersed with bad puns
ok but harry secretly loves it? in the middle of all that media attention and ridiculous claims by Rita Skeeter and everyone else, there’s a radio show that concentrates on headlines like “POTTER CAUGHT WEARING MISMATCHED SOCKS!” instead of pairing him up with every girl he talks to. For years he only agrees to give interviews to Potterwatch, and they’re all on silly subjects. “Ginny made me degnome the garden, but I’m rather bad at it, so I have to pay my kids in chocolate frogs to do it, they just augmented their prices…” Sometimes when he gets bored he calls Lee: “Hey, I got an exclusive for you, I just learned how to change a diaper one-handed!” and somehow Potterwatch becomes a parenting show?