Recently Gawker posted one of those irresistible lists of horrible celebrity encounters—tales of rudeness and jerkiness and shattered illusions and fallen idols. The moral, as ever, was: don’t meet your hero. Unless, of course, that hero is Mister Rogers.
After Fred Rogers’s death in 2003, person after person came forward with stories of the man’s kindness. Davy Rothbart’s New York Times piece showed us a man as gentle and genuine as the neighbor we watched on PBS. And when your faith in your fellow man all but falls apart, you’ve but to watch Mister Rogers’s Senate testimony, and you take heart. (Apologies to Frank Loesser.)
A Redditor shared the following image several years ago, but a friend only just brought it to my attention. It made me cry, and it made me happy. I hope it does the same for you.
Sadie Stein is contributing editor of The Paris Review and the Daily’s correspondent.