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Musings & Observations / Barry Halpin

The value of the human connection is immeasurable -- Anonymous

Those special little moments ­-- what I like to call out-bloody-standing moments -- with family, friends and people I meet along the way are delightful, unexpected and sometimes magical moments that bring a smile, often surprise and can put things in the proper perspective.

This past week was filled with more than its share of special little moments and lots of laughter. Here's my highlight reel.

While waiting with my wife in the checkout line at BJ's Wholesale Club, the guy behind me started a conversation about how on his day off from work he was given his honey-do list.

Caught up in conversation, I forgot to hand the cashier my BJ's card. When she asked for it, he said, "It's my fault he didn't hand you the card ... you know, I feel like I'm at home when I say that. It seems it's always my fault and my wife is always right."

I responded, "You're not alone, brother. Join the club. Days off and to-do lists are wedded." We all had a good laugh; my wife and the cashier giving each other knowing looks. The honey-do list holder and I commiserated with each other and immediately decided to start up a male-support website -- itsalwaysourfault.com -- to help beleaguered men find the strength to keep going.

Leaving the store, my wife proclaimed, "You know it's easier to take the blame than fight it. I know he's learned that from experience."

Way before there was an online world where people could chat in cyberspace, my dad would always strike up a conversation with people in line, whether it was the line at Pakula's Bakery in the Bronx, a movie or Broadway show line, the line at Nathan's or the line to get into Yankee Stadium.

I must have gotten his "talking in lines" DNA because I love to chat with people while waiting in line.

It's always a chance to share musings and observations; if I can bring a smile to someone's face, all the better.

The next day, while making a cup of coffee at the bank, a voice behind me said, "I love your Chuck Taylors."

I've been told many times by people that they "Love my Chuck Taylors," whether I'm wearing black, navy blue or red hi-tops.

I've been wearing Chucks since my teens; they're super comfortable, look great and have a cool cachet.

On top of all that, in the '70s, the Ramones helped Chucks become associated with rock `n' roll. I will always take time to talk to anyone who loves Chucks. Read Full Article 

She went on to tell me how she recently bought herself a pair despite the protestations of her kids. "I went out one day and did what I had been wanting to do for quite a while. I love 'em." We had a great conversation about Chucks and how our kids see us.

My daughter, Erin, decided to archive all our photos -- from numerous photo albums and plastic boxes -- and spent the better part of every day for the past week scanning the photos into the computer. After looking at photos of my wife and I from our teens and 20s, she posted this thought on Facebook: "Archiving photos of my parents when they were hippies isn't as much fun as I thought it would be."

This coming from someone who once said, "Be honest, you guys just make up this parenting thing as you go along."

My wife and I walked into Mi Rancho Deli on Fairfield Avenue in the Black Rock section of Bridgeport for our fix of their huevos rancheros -- they serve authentic Mexican food in the back of a small grocery -- and a guy at one of the tables said, "You're here for your fix of Mexican food."

I replied, "You are psychic; we love Mexican food, and the food here is outrageous."

This led to a spirited conversation about spicy food, Mexican cuisine and great Mexican restaurants in California, where we all used to live.

I'm browsing through the CDs at Barnes & Noble and come across "It's A Beautiful Day -- Live at The Fillmore '68." I've loved the band since I first heard their debut release, "It's A Beautiful Day." As soon as I get into my car, I put the CD into the player and choose track three, their signature tune, "White Bird." Out-bloody-standing!

Barry Halpin can be reached at barryhalpin@aol.com.

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