One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class walking home from school. His name was Kyle. It looked like he was carrying all of his books. I thought to myself, “Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday? He must really be a nerd.” I had quite a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friend tomorrow afternoon), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on. As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him. They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt. His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him. He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes. So, I jogged over to him and as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye. As I handed him his glasses, I said, “Those guys are jerks. They really should get lives.

当我还在上高一时,有一天,我看到我们班的一个孩子正步行回家。他叫凯尔。他似乎背着所有的书。我心想:“为什么有人在周五就把所有的书都带回家呢?他肯定是个书呆子。”我的周末计划得非常详细(先是派对,在第二天下午和我的朋友踢足球)。因此我耸了耸肩,走开了。正走着,我看到一帮孩子朝他跑去。他们追上他,把他所有的书都从怀里扔到地上并把他绊倒,结果他摔在污泥里,眼镜也被打飞了,我看到它落在离他10英尺远的草地上。他抬起头时,我看到他眼里极度悲伤的表情。因此,我慢步向他跑过去。在他爬着寻找眼镜时,我看到了他眼中的泪水。 我把眼镜递给他,说道:“那些家伙都是些蠢蛋,他们真该遭到报应。”

He looked at me and said, “Hey thanks!” There was a big smile on his face. It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude. I helped him pick up his books, and asked him where he lived. As it turned out, he lived near me, so I asked him why I had never seen him before. He said he had gone to private school before now.



We talked all the way home, and I carried his books. He turned out to be a pretty cool kid. I asked him if he wanted to play football on Saturday with me and my friends. He said yes. The more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him. And my friends thought the same of him.Monday morning came, and there was Kyle with the huge stack of books again. I stopped him and said, “Dim boy, you are gonna really build some serious muscles with this pile of books everyday!” He just laughed and handed me half the books.


Over the next four years, Kyle and I became best friends. When we were seniors, we began to think about college. Kyle decided on Georgetown, and I was going to Duke. I knew that we would always be friends, that the miles would never be a problem.


Kyle was valedictorian of our class. I teased him all the time about being a nerd. He had to prepare a speech for graduation. I was so glad it wasn’t me having to get up there and speak.

凯尔是我们班致告别词的学生代表。 我总是取笑他是一个书呆子。他必须为毕业准备一个演讲。我很庆幸不是我要站在那儿演讲。

Graduation day, I saw Kyle.. He looked great. He was one of those guys that really found themselves during high school.  He had more dates than me and all the girls loved him! Boy, sometimes I was jealous.

毕业日来临了——我看到了凯尔,他看起来帅极了。他是那些在高中真正把握住自己的人之一。他的约会比我还要多,几乎所有的女孩都喜欢他。 天哪,有时候我都有些嫉妒。

Today was one of those days. I can see that he was nervous about his speech. So, I smacked him on the back and said, “Hey, big guy, you’ll be great!” He looked at me with one of those looks (the really grateful one) and smiled.”Thanks,” he said. As he started his speech, he cleared his throat, and began. “Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years. Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach…. but mostly your friends. I am here to tell all of you that being a friend to someone is the best gift you can give him or her. I am going to tell you a story.” I just looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the story of the first day we met. He had planned to kill himself over the weekend. He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his Mom wouldn’t have to do it later and was carrying his stuff home. He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile. “Thankfully, I was saved. My friend saved me from doing the unspeakable.”


I heard the gasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us all about his weakest moment. I saw his Mom and Dad looking at me and smiling that same grateful smile. Not until that moment did I realize it’s depth.


Never underestimate the power of your actions. With one small gesture you can change a person’s life. For better or for worse.