Sneak Peek Chapter – Jump Start

Jump Start

Why wait? Life is not a dress rehearsal.
Quit practicing what you are going to do, and just do it.
In one bold stroke you can transform today
– Phillip Markens

Several months ago, I was surprised to learn that my godfather, Uncle Fred, had another godchild, who owned a vintage clothing store in a college town in Massachusetts.

“Would I be interested in selling my prom dress?” my mom asked –  not so subtly trying to clear her attic of the sentimental things stored by her three long grown children.  Seriously?  My sexy prom dress, slit up the sides with hot pants, is now considered VINTAGE? Apparently so.

A few months later, I got to meet Trudy Paine, the woman who sold this irreplaceable vestige of my fashionable past, at the funeral service of our godfather.  It was a wonderful meeting, despite the sad circumstances, and I sent out a thought of gratitude to Uncle Fred for this new connection in my life.

When I told Trudy that I was writing a book about people who were touching the lives of others, she said, “I have a great story for you!”

Trudy shared what took place at Uncle Margaret’s Vintage Clothing Store:


Wonder how much money I’ll make today? I thought, grappling with a crossword puzzle while I awaited customers. It was a very slow day at my store and the entire street seemed eerily quiet – even the birds weren’t making a sound.

I heard a slow shuffle outside.  I looked through the store window and saw a lanky young man, with long, spaghetti-like legs, walk towards the front door.  His shoulders were stooped, his head was hanging, and he seemed to be staring more at the ground than at his destination.

Hmmmm.  This will be interesting.

He entered the store and stood in front of the counter.  He didn’t make eye contact. ‘Hi. I’ve been looking for work and wonder if you’re hiring, but I suppose you’re not, so I guess I’ll leave.’

He looked so defeated standing there is his worn-out clothes and downcast demeanor.

Impulsively, I pointed to the men’s dressing room and said, ‘Wait a minute. Go into that room.’

Then I grabbed a pair of black pants, a 1950’s blue suit jacket, and a shirt that looked like they would fit, and handed them to him, saying, ‘Go try these on just for fun.’

‘Okay,’ he said, looking puzzled, but passively responding to my directive. As he shuffled to the room, I heard him mumble, ‘Sure, why not, I haven’t got anything better to do.’

A few minutes later, he emerged from the dressing room. I couldn’t believe the metamorphosis . ‘Go look at yourself in the mirror,’ I ordered.  When he looked at himself, it was like watching a dry, droopy flower get some raindrops. He straightened his posture, his eyes brightened, and his mouth actually fell open.  ‘Wow! Everything fits perfect,’ he said, looking pleased with what he saw.

As I approached him to straighten his shirt collar, he appeared a bit perplexed.  I looked into his eyes and said, ‘NOW, go look for work!’

‘But I can’t afford these clothes,’ he replied.

‘Yes, you can.  Just pass it on.  Once when I was younger, I got help from a truck driver, who told me to pass it on and so I am,’ I said.  ‘You do the same thing.’

Then I put his other clothes in a bag, handed it to him, and pointed to the door. ‘Go on. Git.’ After saying, thank you a dozen times, he walked confidently out of the store.

Then something magical happened.  I looked out the window and watched as he started walking faster. Then he jumped, clapped his heels together, threw his arms in the air, and snapped his fingers. My eyes got teary, and then I laughed with his spontaneous joy.

About two-and-a-half hours later, he came running into the store.  Panting and out of breath, he said with a wide grin, ‘I had to come to tell you: I got a job!  A real job!’

‘Good for you’, I said, giving him a high five.

After he left, I realized that what he gave me that day was worth far more than making a sale. He accepted my gesture of giving, he shared his young adult world with me, and unbeknownst to him, he reminded me that connecting to another human being with kindness makes everyone involved feel good.

He also left me with a beautiful memory that I pull out whenever I need a lift – and it immediately makes me smile.

Purchase your copy of Love Is the New Currency



  1. What a lovely story.

    aaahh yes, giving and uplifting someone is powerful medicine for our own selves.
    Thank you so much Linda & Trudy & Uncle Fred too.

    My own Godfather’s name was Uncle Fred 🙂

  2. Linda,
    It is a wonderful thing to fulfill a dream, I am so happy for you. You never cease to amaze me.

    Love is the best currency thanks for the reminder!!!


  3. JoAnn Somerville says:

    Hi Linda!!

    Congratulations!! I just read your “sneak peek” chapter and loved it!! What a heartwarming story. I wish you all the luck in the world in your endeavor, and am confident you will do great!! The book is a wonderful “concept” – so upbeat!

    JoAnn Somerville

  4. That was lovely! Sounds like a great book.

  5. Hi Linda,
    I love this story! I could feel and envision it through your words. You are a gifted story teller. Your book has a purpose — if it makes one person stop and reflect for a couple of minutes about giving and kindness — know that you have done your job oh so well.

    Keep on going because I am eager to own this jewel you are creating. My best, Laurel

  6. What a lovely story filled with hope, love, and compassion. The ” pass it forward” concept is awesome, and thanks for reminding me to do it more often when opportunities arise. I forget what simple acts of kindness would mean to others AND me. I can’t WAIT to read your entire book when it becomes available! Here’s to you for following your dream of publishing a book that will matter, and make a difference in the lives of those MANY people who will read it. Love to you!

  7. What a great story! It is such a great gift to really help someone and pay it forward! I love the concept, the author of the upcoming book and can’t wait to read more! Love and blessings to you, Linda, for sharing a concept that is so real, worthwhile and SPECIAL!

  8. Thank you, Linda and Trudy, for such a poignant reminder of what’s truly important!

  9. Sue Anne Cinnamon says:

    I had goose bumps while reading this!!!!!!YES YES YES,this is what it’s all about….enhancing lives ,living and loving in it’s highest form!!!!I hope your well…
    xoxo Love to you
    Sue Anne

  10. Barbara Brown Sengelmann says:

    Your sharing TOUCHED MY HEART !!
    Funny we only met once but from reading the beginnings of your new journey I feel you <3
    Isn't the Universe a funny place we live in ? When the time is right The Teacher appears …
    I have found many new teachers lately ~~ maybe I have Let Go ENOUGH to begin New Beginnings ~

  11. Ellen Cornelius says:

    Glad to have met you this evening. Came right home and read this touching story. I’m looking forward to reading more.

  12. Hello there! Quick question that’s completely off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when browsing from my iphone 4. I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to resolve this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share. Appreciate it!

    • Hello,
      I will ask my web designer if there is anything that can be done about that.
      Thanks for letting me know.

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