The Coke & The Cookie

If you’ve been following me on social media you’ve probably noticed a lot has been going on in life. From college finals, OSU graduation (still hasn’t hit me yet lol), book signings, speaking events, and trainings, it’s been a very busy May. Although time is limited, it doesn’t mean life is short of inspiring moments, such as the one I experienced a few weeks ago. 

It was around midnight as I was driving home from a speaking event. I stopped at a gas station/Subway realizing that both my car and my stomach were hungry. I had not had time to eat dinner yet. I looked in my wallet and saw I had $22.00. “Perfect!” I thought. “I’ll get a 6 inch sub, a cookie, and a coke. And put the rest in fuel.” As I stood in line at Subway, I noticed an old trucker ordering a sandwich behind me. He looked more than just exhausted. He looked spent. He asked him, “How are you doing sir?” He replied, “Seen better days. My truck has been giving me trouble here and there. Been driving this truck from South Dakota. I’ve been on the road forever.” When he said this, I could feel in my heart he was having a rough night. As he was still ordering his sandwich behind me, I looked in my wallet and thought, this guy could use some encouragement. As I paid for my sandwich, I told the cashier I would not be ordering a cookie or a coke, but instead buying the trucker’s 6-inch sandwich behind me. 
The moment I told her this, she smiled, lit up and said, “Well you don’t see this everyday. This is awesome!” After paying for the subs I realized I had just enough money for gas to get me home. I got in line to pay for my gas and suddenly the man who stood behind me, came by and said, “You have no idea, but this means more than you know. Thank you!” I told him to have a safe trip and to enjoy the sub. He walked out the door, and I paid for my gas. While walking out of the gas station, the Subway cashier approached me and said, “Sir, this is for you.” She then handed me a 32 oz Coke, and a Subway bag full of chocolate chip cookies. Written on the cookie bag said 3 little words: “ITS ON ME.” The cashier had blessed me with some treats for the road. 
It took me a few weeks to process everything that happened that night. But what stood out the most was the 3 words written on the bag. “It’s On Me.” 
This cashier had taken it upon herself to take action and pay it forward. In our nation, many have characterized this generation has being lazy, passive, and resistant to being responsible. I believe that perception can change. Those 3 words can do it. What if we lived with an “It’s On Me” mentality? Where we realized that we needed to take action more often. It’s on us to be better leaders. It’s on us to see the needs of others and strive to meet them. It’s on us to leave an impact on our world. I know it might sound silly, but a Coke & a Cookie were a response to an action. Imagine what the response would be, when we give more than just a few dollars, but reached the lives we were meant to reach, and gave from the heart we were meant to give. It’s on you. It’s on me. And just to think, this all started with only a Coke & a Cookie. #ItsOnMe #TheCoke&TheCookie

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Brandon Baumgarten

Brandon Baumgarten grew up in the small town of Oilton, Oklahoma and was elected to serve the Oklahoma FFA Association as State Secretary, State President, and as a National Officer Candidate representing nearly 25,000 students on the local, state, and national levels from 2011-2013. Afterwards, Brandon launched his speaking career and authored the highly sought after leadership book, Caught Up & Called Out, hoping to help others see the impact they can make on this world. He is a professional speaker, speaking at over 100 different events each year, and a graduate from Oklahoma State University in Agricultural Leadership, and was even named a top 10 student. He is a Zig Ziglar Legacy & Youth Certified Presenter and his message is always to engage, encourage, and empower you to do something big in your life! No matter if you are a student, teacher, parent, or business executive, Brandon's presentations are certain to make you laugh, think, and realize your impact is about to begin!

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