09/30/2004: "It's the matter of showing respect"
I'm quite fortunate to be surrounded by lots of nice people. Yesterday, there was this tall black man who came to buy his lunch. When I rang up, he realized he had 10 cent short in his pocket. He said he'll bring it by later, and gave me all he had. I gave him his lunch, and forgot about it. He was a first time customer and I wasn't going to cry over a dime. He came back this afternoon, politely thanked me and gave me a quarter. I thought it was such a nice gesture; I was touched by the way he showed respect. A few other times in the past I let customers I really didn't know walk away with short of money, sometimes just a small change, sometimes a few dollars. And they came back and paid whatever they owed me. Only one time, someone who came more than a few times, got some miso soup, and said he'll pay me the next day, and I never saw him again, which was surprising because I was pretty sure he'd come back. All the other people I knew who bought food on credit came back and paid. All the people I didn't know came back and paid.