A Fresh Outlook on Life: A community blog

Helen Marie Szollosy encourages readers to take a fresh look at life. She advises people on how to see life situations from a perspective of gratitude and flexibility.

Play Ball!

Written by Helen Marie Szollosy, Community blogger | May 1, 2012 11:30 AM

I have the opportunity to work part-time at various venues in the Harrisburg area, as a retail merchandiser.  I love meeting people from all cultures, backgrounds, fields and beliefs.  I engage total strangers in conversations.  I made it a practice to learn how to say: Hello! Goodbye! How are you? and Thank you! in many languages. 

I was entering a grocery store, yesterday, on the outskirts of the city of Harrisburg.  As I walked through the produce section, my eye caught a woman who had just picked up a green cabbage, slightly bouncing it in her right hand, feeling the weight of it. 

I immediately thought of a baseball pitcher on a mound, preparing to throw.  I caught her eye, smiled and said: 'You look like you are ready to throw that cabbage like a ball!'  The woman smiled, and I realized she hadn't understood what I had said.

Besides learning bits of many languages, I also know some sign language as well as how to communicate and interact with persons from all life expressions.  I respect physical space and mental/physical abilities when communicating.  I am familiar with brain damage as well as other neurological degrees of abilities.  I stop, look, listen and observe to see how I might best communicate with anyone I meet.

I did not know the culture, nor language of this woman, I just knew that my American lingo wasn't going to 'do the trick!'  So I stopped, took the stance of a Baseball Pitcher on a pitching mound, mimicked the baseball in my hands, took a step back and mimicked tossing the baseball across the produce section.  The woman freely laughed out loud and smiled!

Just then, her husband came over to her with another produce find, and she rapidly started to tell him the wonderful story!  I could tell the language was Spanish.  It was wonderful to see and hear the animated conversation she had with her husband!  She was showing him how she had bounced the cabbage in her hand, how I had noticed, and how I had 'said' that it looked like she was ready to toss the cabbage from a pitching mound!

What can I say?  Who needs verbal language?  Are there barriers in communication, or aren't there? Where there is a will, there is a way!  I say!  It's all in how you see it! Why not from a PHresh Outlook?  *smile

As for this moment in time, it PRODUCED a wonderful outcome in the PRODUCE department.  Punny, isn't it?

I say PRICELESS!   Now get out there and PLAY BALL! ... uh, I mean COMMUNICATE!

Published in Fresh Outlook on Life: A community blog

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