OPINION: Feeling down? Keep looking down

OPINION: Feeling down? Keep looking down

By David Gomez Jr.

Published Tuesday, April 12, 2022

As I type this, I think “Huh, maybe I should write right now because I feel this way and take advantage of this emotion?”

Said emotion being gloom.

There I am. Just feeling, but then it hits me like a ton of bricks. It wasn’t while I sat in front of the Mac desktop in The Bridge office, but during my walk around campus and discovering at least 10 smiley face gums that are stuck on the concrete paths around campus.

David Gomez Jr.
David Gomez Jr.

Easter is around the corner and many will search for eggs, but I think finding these magical smiley face gems to be much more rewarding.

Personally, I’ve been in a terrible mood as of late. So, to spot these little works of art genuinely makes my day. I honestly think it’s better than those painted rocks with words of support.

Likely the reason I think so is because I write so often. It’s nice to look at a painting, or film, and try to read colors, angles or depictions instead.

So, as I’m feeling down, I look down. That’s why seeing those things smiling back makes me think of positive thoughts. A few of those happy ideas include: the last remaining Blockbuster video rental store, my niece’s laugh or a time when I made someone’s day. I only know that because they told me. Just tooting my own horn. Ha ha.

Looking at the smiley face does make me wonder, who decided to take a few minutes out of their day to create such a thing? What was the intent? Are they for passersby? Is it a fraternity tradition? Maybe maintenance since they stay there so long? Who knows?

Smiley faces adorn the sidewalks around campus at TAMIU.
David Gomez Jr. | Bridge
One of the numerous small smiley faces placed on the walkways around TAMIU’s campus.

What I do know, they spark my imagination and help me create a small world filled with hope—a small escape from the stress of homework. They are a reminder that better days can exist and it starts with a bit of kindness.

Even if it comes from such a simple thing as gum stuck on the ground.


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