Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Friends, Favors and Payback

By carol

Alex O'Loughlin often mentions his friends in conversations.

"I had a good friend who came by every morning and took me for coffee and worked out the plan for every day. I didn’t have the money to go home to Australia even if I’d wanted to. It was friendship that kept me strong."
"There was a point when I was living on my mate Sam Gould’s couch for over a year – so long that my back went out."
Alex shared the friend’s couch story on Jimmy Kimmel Live recently. Kimmel asked Alex what he had done to pay this friend back.  Alex replied, "Nothing."
When I first heard him say that, I thought, well, why not? Shouldn’t Alex try to pay back this great favor?
More thinking followed.  Last year I almost died.  Three friends took turns being with me in the hospital telling me not to give up. They called nurses, doctors and CEO’s daily to advocate for me, refusing to accept any response except "I’ll check on her now and try a different treatment."
So do I follow them around now waiting to save their lives?  Pull them out of the way from speeding cars?  Perhaps I should give them my life savings.  Would that make us even?
Is there any way to pay back this kind of favor, this degree of faith and trust and compassion?  I don’t believe there is.  And that is probably why Alex said "Nothing."


  1. A friend helped me out of a godawful mess once when I hated to ask anyone help me. I didn't ask her but she came to my rescue without hesitation. I felt so bad and I told her I would never be able to pay her back for her unselfish kindness. Her reply, "You won't pay me back. Don't you see? I'm paying back someone who helped me in the past. I know you'll get a chance to do it in the future." I never forgot it and I did get to pay it back to someone else who was in need.

  2. Thanks, Pinks. I think that's called paying it forward, and we all get that chance at least once in our lifetime.

  3. I don't think he needs to pay him back per say. But if that friend should need him, I am sure Alex would be there at the drop of a hat.

  4. When ever I have a chance to help someone out, I dont think about how it will benefit me .I dont think about a reward or even the noteriety
    it might bring.It simply means all of us have a responsbility to do the right thing. When the times comes Im sure you and Alex will do it too.

  5. At least Alex appreciated it enough to mention it on the show. True friends are also those that don't need any form of payback, they are just there and know you'll be there for them when the time comes....I'm glad I have a few of those.