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Once upon a time there was a young man down on his luck. He lost his job in January. In February his boyfriend dumped him. His cat died in March. His wallet was stolen in April. Worse, he turned 30 in May.
June brought summer; but in spite of the sunshine he sat brooding over his misfortunes. In contrast to a cloudless blue sky, he was not a happy camper. And while wrapped up in his Linus blanket of doom and gloom, he was unexpectedly joined by an older gentleman.
“Good day, young friend,” said the distinguished personage. “Is it not a lovely, most invigorating day?” he ventured, taking out of his pocket a small bag of bread crumbs to feed sparrows, of which there was an abundance that radiant morning.
The young man sighed, “Yes, it may be a beautiful day, but I can’t for the life of me enjoy it.” And, sensing the older gentleman to have a sympathetic ear, he told him all the gloomy things that had happened.
“May I offer a friendly tip on living?” coaxed the older gentleman, tossing crumbs to the sparrows, now eagerly crowding around the two bench sitters.
“It’s been my experience that whatever one’s lot in life one should always say thank you. Indeedy, I begin and end each day with my thank-you meditation.”
“Just what might that be?” ventured the young man, skeptical. Curious nonetheless. (Maybe there’s some hope for me after all, he mused; and suddenly the June day and the park seemed sunbeams brighter. The birds just a little less annoyingly chirpy.)
“It’s simple. The words become a mantra that you repeat over and over until it becomes a part of what’s called your inner child. Your subconscious. Your doorway to positive change.”
“Tell me more,” said the young man, convinced that just maybe here at long last was the magic key to turn his life and his luck around for the promise of far better days ahead. (Oh, my!)
“Just five minutes in the morning before breakfast. Five minutes at night before sleep. But – and this is important! – my young friend. You must be persistent. Dedicated. Determined.” “Yes. Yes. What else? Do go on.”
“Simple,” continued the older gentleman, looking at his pocket watch, getting up to leave. “Just repeat 300 times, morning and night, Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! 300 times. The Universe will surely hear you and respond in kind.”
Having so instructed the young man in what many believers fancy to be the Long Lost Key to Success, the aged advisor left, adding “Have a Rainbow Day!” vanishing in the twinkling of an eye down the park’s less-travelled road.
So encouraged the young man repeated his 300 thanks. Twice daily. Mondays through Sundays. Month after month. Season after season. He didn’t get his job back. His lover left town. No one returned his wallet. Predictably he turned 31. But a miracle happened.
One solitary night out of the stary blue he heard a cosmic voice. It said quite audibly. Quite succinctly. Somewhat matter-of-factly. Loud and clear. “You’re welcome, Mary! Set your alarm for 6:30!”