Friday, February 17, 2012


I copied the following from a Facebook Post of one of my friends.  It's too incredible not to pass along.  Hope you'll take time to read it in case you missed it online...

 A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the violin; it was a cold January morning. He played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour, it was calculated that 1,100 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

Three minutes went by, and a middle aged man noticed there was musician playing. He slowed his pace, and stopped for a few seconds, and then hurried up to meet his schedule.

A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw the money in the till and without stopping, and continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late for work.

The one who paid the most attention was a 3 year old boy. His mother tagged him along, hurried, but the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally, the mother pushed hard, and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. All the parents, without exception, forced them to move on.

In the 45 minutes the musician played, only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money, but continued to walk their normal pace. He collected $32. When he finished playing and silence took over, no one noticed it. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the most talented musicians in the world. He had just played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, on a violin worth $3.5 million dollars.

Two days before his playing in the subway, Joshua Bell sold out at a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a real story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste, and priorities of people. The outlines were: in a commonplace environment at an inappropriate hour: Do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize the talent in an unexpected context?

One of the possible conclusions from this experience could be:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world playing the best music ever written, how many other things are we missing?

Something to think about...
Today I am continuing to enjoy my sweet Miss K.  Everything else in my life is taking second place...

Love to you...


The Strawberry Mallard said...

Positively mind boggling, but not surprising. That old saying,"take time to smell the roses", comes to mind in reading this.
Thank you, Rebecca for bringing this to our sad, and yes the children knew they were passing greatness for certain!
Hugs, Nancy and the menagerie

Unknown said...

You are absolutely right. And thanks for the reminder with that story. Hugs!

Stella said...

Thanks for the reminder that we need to take to stop and smell the roses or listen to the music. We forget we need to live life each moment. Blessings on your day.

Yasmin Smith said...

Beautiful post today, Rebecca...It made me stop and think how that is so true about us....we are such a busy, hurry-up society now that we do not stop and listen to the music or smell the flowers anymore....I think it also made me realize that some of the things I think are so important to me to be hurrying along are not really important at all. I need to listen and sniff more often!!!!!!!
Yesterday's post was lovely, too. I am sorry I have not left comments
lately, but have been suffering from a pinched nerve all along the right side of my body. I finally went to the doctor and need a CAT scan....and then we'll go from there.....but I just could not let it go any longer for you to wonder where my "two cents" was!!!
Enjoy time with Miss K, and have a funfilled weekend with her!! My
5 year old great-grand-daughter is coming from Houston next weekend with her grandparents (my son) and I can't wait to see her...or them!
Love, Francy

Unknown said...

I've heard of this before and I too am guilty of rushing past. A good piece of advice I heard once was: 'do not let the urgent get in the way of the important'. So many times we walk past the beauty of the Lord, or the Lord Himself, and never stop to acknowledge His splendor. I hope people wake up before it is too late. I would not want anyone to miss the Glory Train because they forgot what the beauty of the Lord looks like.

myletterstoemily said...

this is such a convicting story that will
hopefully encourage me to stop and
smell the roses!

i have also heard a story about a woman
singing "His eye is on the sparrow" in
a starbucks that spurred every person
in the coffee shop to sing. :)

Christine said...

I find that in my old age I stop more and appreciate the beauty around me. I listen to the birds sing, the wind blowing, gaze at stars on a cold night, etc. Awesome post.

Anonymous said...

This was an awesome post, Rebecca!I love to stop and appreciate beauty, but I know how hard it would be for me to do this if my life was like the people who had such strict deadlines placed upon their lives from the moment they woke up!

Anne said...

I can see how that happens.My husband used to take the train down to the city for his job.He saw all sorts of pan handlers,musicians etc.There are so many of them.Especially by the train station.When you see this everyday you get used to it.You don't even see it.It may be sad but true.I get the message.And it is true we need to look around more.I have to say I have never heard of him so I would not have known him even if I stopped to listen.

Mouse said...

have we got no time to spare ....I would always have stopped to listen to the music and I often stop what I am doing to listen to my wild birds in the garden and the bees buzzing .... love mouse xxxxx

Mouse said...

have we got no time to spare ....I would always have stopped to listen to the music and I often stop what I am doing to listen to my wild birds in the garden and the bees buzzing .... love mouse xxxxx

Mosaic Magpie said...

This is a great post and a good reminder to stop and smell the roses each and every day.

Vicki said...

Hi, Rebecca,
Such a great story and what a good reminder to slow down and enjoy the beauty in this wonderful world of ours. I know you enjoyed your time with sweet granddaughter. Our grandchildren are such a blessing aren't they? Enjoy your weekend, dear friend. Love, Vicki

à la parisienne said...


I just wanted to stop by and thank you for your kind comment about my Romantic Homes feature, and I see on your sidebar that you have much experience in features! I have several of those back issues that I've kept, so I will have to go back and reread your features!


Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder said...

Dearest Rebecca,

Indeed, perception, taste and priorities change with location and environment. So that means people don't really LISTEN or LOOK...
Love to you and have a great weekend!


NanaDiana said...

What a wonderful human interest story- I had not heard it before. I try to stop when I can to enjoy the moment, don't you?

We are on the road this morning to head home from Disney. I am traveling with my dd and a 2 year old and a 3 month old. Please send Valium! xo Diana

Char said...

Hi Rebecca,
having spent 6 yrs in D.C. I know that as the heart of our country, it is a very busy place. I wonder if an experiment like this one was done someplace else, if the results would have been the same.
My guess is, yes, sadly they would.
When I think of the hungry people we walk past, the suffering we don't see, I am not surprised by anything anymore,

Musiqal1 said...

Sp true. Sometimes we just need to stop and enjoy the hidden treasures that are right there in our face and we might miss because life is so fast. Great post.

Anonymous said...

I have always believed it's the little things you MUST stop and take notice of. THIS IS AMAZING... I would love to have sat across the street or above looking out a window, watching others... taking note. IT's amazing to me how many times it's the "odd" or "out of place" things that catch my eye. Not the everyday mundane. WONDERFUL post indeed. Hugs. T

Passionate for White said...

Oh Rebecca thanks for sharing this....certainly makes one stop and think.

Your Craft Book said...

I love this blog Rebecca and it made me think of those that are tapped on the shoulder by Our Lord but are not ready to make a commitment. Reubs and I have many friends that tell us they are not ready, but one day it may be too late for them and the opportunity is forever lost.

Thank you so much for sharing, Maureen.

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