It’s tough to give the strange people you meet on public transportation the benefit of the doubt.
Between the weird, smelly sandwiches they insist on eating to their utter disregard for your personal space, some of the strangest people you meet will be on the train. But one viral Facebook post might make you think twice about judging fellow passengers.
When 6’5″ tall bald man entered the sky train in Vancouver shouting, cursing and generally scaring everyone around, it was a 70-year-old woman who swooped in to ease the situation.
In a miraculous display of humanity, the woman reached for the man’s hand and held it, according to a Facebook post written by an observer.
“While everyone was scared, this one seventy year old woman reached out her hand, tightly gripping his hand until he calmed down, sat down silently, with eventual tears in his eyes,” witness Ehab Taha wrote.
Sometimes these kind of situations just need a mother’s touch, and the woman gave that to the man quite literally.
“I spoke to the woman after this incident and she simply said, ‘I’m a mother and he needed someone to touch,'” Taha wrote.
Taha’s takeaway from the event is one we could all use to remember in our most stressful commuting moments.
“Don’t fear or judge the stranger on the bus: life does not provide equal welfare for all its residents.”
We’ve all felt the disappointment of a bad test score.
As standardized testing has become the norm at an earlier and earlier age, some educators have noticed that scores sometimes deflate students’ self confidence.
Harmony Hill Primary School in Northern Ireland decided to do something about it.
In a letter that the school asked students to read before opening their Transfer Test scores, they gave kids a little pep talk. And it was beautiful.
The full note reads:
“Before you open the envelope with your score in it, we want you to read this first.
Inside the envelope is a score. It’s a score you’ve been waiting for but it might not be the score you’ve been hoping for. If that’s the case, it’s only natural that you will feel disappointed.
We will be very sorry about that and will feel disappointed ‘for you’ too – but we won’t feel disappointed ‘in you.’
Unfortunately, in life, things don’t always work out the way we want them to and it can take a little time to sort out the feelings and thoughts we can have when that happens. We know that each of you has worked very hard and with a great attitude. No score can ever take that away from you.
In fact, we believe that your attitude and who you are as a person is much more than any mark on a test. Who you are and the attitudes you have with travel with you whatever school is fortunate is enough to have you as one of their new pupils in September.
That is so important.
You are quite simply ‘unique’ and we are very proud of you. Make us proud whatever school you go to. Don’t give up easily when the going gets tough. Grow up to be kind, caring, generous, loving adults who make a positive difference to this world by how you live your life.
Remember, the score in the envelope is just a mark for some tests. It cannot measure how amazing you are! So, no matter what happens in the next few minutes, today you must celebrate YOU!
With love from all the staff!”
Now that’s how you encourage students to try their best.
Does where you live affect your health, your happiness, your safety, and your prosperity? It might, according to The Legatum Institute, a think tank based in London. They recently released their annual global Prosperity Index, a huge survey that ranks what it calls the most prosperous countries in the world.
They didn’t just look at per-capita gross domestic product, but rather compared 89 variables to come up with the list, including interesting figures such as the number of secure Internet servers a country has and how well rested people feel on a day-to-day basis.
The variables are then split into eight subindexes: economy, entrepreneurship and opportunity, governance, education, health, safety and security, personal freedom, and social capital. After looking at the 142 countries in the world that have the most available data, here’s what they came up with.
In the economy subindex Czech Republic was rated 13th, but it performed badly in the index’s social-capital ranking.
According to the Guardian, species around the world are disappearing at almost 1,000 times the natural rate — which means we’re losing around 150-200 speciesevery day. Close to 15% of all mammal species and 11% of all bird species are currently listed as threatened with extinction.
And while the human population shows no signs of slowing down, we continue to appropriate more land to develop cities, acquire natural resources, and build farms, not realizing or caring that we’re destroying other creatures’ natural habitats (not to mention man-made disasters like oil spills, climate change, acid rain, and over-hunting and fishing).
These animals are just a fraction of the thousands in danger of extinction…
Hooded seals, which are found only in the central and western North Atlantic, have been heavily hunted since the turn of the century.
Prior to the 1940s, they were hunted for leather and oil deposits, though more recently, threats include subsistence hunting, and bycatch.
Tree kangaroos, as their name suggests, are marsupials who live in trees. They live in the tropical rainforests of New Guinea, far northeastern Queensland, Australia, and other islands in the region.
The two most significant threats to tree kangaroos are habitat loss and hunting. Their natural habitats are destroyed by logging and timber production which, in turn, exposes them to predators. They are also hunted by native tribes and communities, which markedly contributes to the population decline of the species.
These exotic looking birds of prey inhabit Mount Everest, the Himalayas, and other mountainous regions of Europe and Asia.
Bearded vultures have been persecuted in significant numbers because people feared (without justification) that they regularly carried off children and domestic animals.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) estimates that are are only 10,000 pairs in the wild worldwide.
The axolomeh (maddeningly, the plural of axolotl), which are also known as Mexican walking fish, are actually not fish at all. These amphibians originate from numerous lakes, such as Lake Xochimilco underlying Mexico City.
As of 2010, wild axolomeh are nearly extinct due to urbanization in Mexico City and consequent water pollution, and a 2013 search turned up no surviving individuals in the wild.
Originally inhabiting the Eurasian steppe, including Dzungaria and Mongolia, the saiga antelope is probably one of the most unique looking creatures in the world. Currently, it is only found in one location in Russia, and three areas in Kazakhstan.
The saiga antelope has been heavily hunted for centuries. Its horn is used in traditional Chinese medicine, which has wiped the population out completely in China, where it is a Class I Protected Species, and drives major poaching and smuggling.
When Tony Sellers came to visit his 79-year-old mother, Sadie, at Daleview House — an elderly care home in Northern Ireland — and she was nowhere to be found, he was understandably a little bit freaked out.
When he went to his mother’s room, her wheelchair was there, but her walker was missing…