What does tennis star Novak Djokovic have in common with ’90s alt-rock band The New Radicals?
They apparently both agree on one of the most fundamental principles of living a good life: you only get what you give.
At the 2014 French Open at Roland Garros, Djokovic was taking a break from play and enjoying a brief respite from the pouring rain, thanks to a ball boy who dutifully held an umbrella over Djokovic’s head, keeping the tennis legend dry.
But it turns out even one of the best athletes of all time doesn’t like to be doted on when he could be the one doing the doting.
Much to the shock of the ball boy, Djokovic first invited him to come around and sit on the bench – normally reserved for players only – with him so he wouldn’t have to stand.
Then he went a step further and swapped instruments with the ball boy: Djokovic took the umbrella and held it over the two of them, and gave the ball boy his racket, much to the delight of the French Open crowd.
While it was a small gesture for Djokovic, it was no doubt a lifelong memory for the young ball boy, and a great reminder that small acts of generosity and kindness can go a long way. (And, in the right circumstances, even make the crowd go wild.)