The airline I frequently use has three boarding groups; the A’s, B’s, and the C’s. The young man was loitering in the front of the line of the A group long before the boarding call.

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I’ve been in the front of the line or the A group more than a few times. It’s reserved for the person that is the most unorganized, has a last minute emergency, or spends the most money, or all the above.

I landed a seat right by the gateway that gave me an up-close look at the young man at the front of the A-line. You had to look closely to see him, ’cause he was wearing all sorts of distractions.

He had a dark, but thin, mustache and goatee on his innocent young face. He looked like he could have been a relative of Johnny Depp… but he didn’t dress like it.

The man’s mud-colored boots were the cowboy kind. Not the sharp-toed stab-the-stirrup kind of boot. They were the “Roper” kind of shoe wear that let everybody know that he was country.

His jeans were faded but without holes. The legs crinkled around the boots and hung halfway down the wooden two-inch heels. You couldn’t seem much of his button up shirt that was hidden by his midnight blue zip-up jacket covering it.

The jacket had patches all over it, but the biggest and most prominent ones were the famous logo for NASCAR on both sides of the zipper, about chest high. The young man’s bandana worn like a tight scarf matched the color of his NASCAR jacket, a few brown locks peeked out from underneath in the back.

His cowboy hat was white, or it used to be. It was more of a cream color with hints of yellow from the sweat. It was a real cowboy hat, not the ten-gallon type, but the kind with the front and back brim curled down to protect the neck and face from the sun.

I notice characters. But too often I prematurely judge them.

There are plenty of places in the world where the young man probably wouldn’t stand out in the crowd – like a NASCAR race.

It’s a fallen human nature that begins to judge without thinking. That’s when we have a lapse in wisdom.

When they called the A boarding group the kid just stood in the way. By the time they got to my group I had to step around the kid. I didn’t say anything, but I was perturbed. I was in my seat by the time the kid and his C group boarded.

Nothing worse than a middle-aged person who’s been shown mercy and grace not using it on others.

Before I felt bad for the kid I felt bad about myself. Who is a dude with hair too long, that wears T-shirts with either workout or beach logos, to point an invisible finger?

Regret and repentance followed. “The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.” Being in the A group that really counts is a matter of grace.