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1. I saw you picking up after someone else’s dog yesterday. You deserve more credit than you get – which I’m guessing is none, and probably often.

A view from North Clevenger Canyon

2. Maybe you created the map, or the board on which it hung, or the website where I initially found the hike I took today. Maybe you’re the person who cuts back the wild plants, or nudges loose rocks back in their place when they block the trail. Whoever you are, the hike today was brilliant and clear, just the way you intended.

3. You work at my neighborhood Mexican-food restaurant. Friendly, like a starving dog is friendly, you sweat profusely and never look me in the eyes. With short, rapid movements your shaking hands clean dirty tables again, again and again. Always, words of apology are tumbling from a mouth so full of broken teeth for months I thought you didn’t speak English. I know what it’s like, trying to quit, and I’m giving you the credit no one who knows you is willing to give you anymore. It’s not for being employable, however long it may last. Or for depositing your first paycheck in 23 years, or saying no to the beer. I’m giving you credit just for trying.

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