The Power of a T-Shirt: Choose To Be Nice

Our Founder, Dina Creiger, witnessed the power a Choose To Be Nice shirt can hold. Twice. Before 9AM.

Imagine a Starbucks. A crowded, pre-9AM, midweek Starbucks. Guests are under-caffeinated and the baristas are under-staffed.



Example 1: 


I believe people are usually good… or at least they want to be good. Remember, there is usually a backstory to why someone is not acting in the most kind way. Last week, I was at Starbucks and grabbed the very last available table. As my luck would have it, there was no plug within reach to that particular table. However, there was an outlet at the table next to me. So, I thought I’d nicely ask if the woman at that table would mind switching seats with me so I could use the plug. She looked up from her work, slightly annoyed and sheepishly admitted, “Oh, this is my favorite table.”


But all of a sudden, her facial expression completely changed, and so did her answer.


“Oh my goodness, I’m so sorry. Of course you can have the table. Your shirt is a great reminder to be nice.”

She went on to explain that the reason for her “grumpiness” was the election results from her home state of Texas. On top of that, she was studying for her entrance exams into graduate school. We ended up having a great conversation, and as it turns out, my cord was long enough to reach the outlet by her table. She got to remain at her favorite table, I got to use the plug, and we both enjoyed each other’s company for a few minutes. All was well in the world. Or at least at Starbucks.

Example 2:



I was sipping coffee as one usually does while at Starbucks. This particular cup, however, was half-caf as I’m trying to get off of caffeine. Anyone who has attempted this knows it is no easy feat. In fact, “being nice” while under-caffeinated might be one of the most difficult tasks at hand on a Wednesday morning. I found myself thirsty so I went up to the busy barista. As nicely as I could muster, I asked her for a cup of ice water whenever she had a free moment. She looked at me and said “thank you for asking so nicely and actually living your t-shirt message.”
The barista went on to tell me about a woman who had cut her off on the road the previous day. Ironically enough, the culprit had a bumper sticker on the back of her car about being calm.  The barista was, of course, struck by the irony of the situation, and thus, was pleasantly surprised when I chose to be nice under trying circumstances, “living up” to my t-shirt.


As someone who wears a Choose To Be Nice t-shirt or has a Choose To Be Nice magnet on their car, you may find yourself in similar situations to these. All I can ask is that you remember the Choose To Be Nice message you are promoting. Sometimes it isn’t the easy decision and you may really want to cut someone off, but that’s why being nice is a choice. Here’s to making the better choice and hoping that you spreading the message reminds other people of the message, too.


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