1351. It pays
© Bruce Goodman 20 July 2018
Robin was at the end of his tether. He was fairly well educated, highly competent, and unemployed. He had applied for dozens of jobs, got two or three interviews, and still no job. He wondered if it was because his clothes were a bit tatty. They weren’t torn or anything, but they just looked old and shoddy.
At last, he got another job interview! He washed his sole remaining respectable shirt, carefully decreased his trousers, and cleaned his shoes. But, oh woe! His shirt, for some reason, came out of the wash with blotchy blue stains on it.
Robin figured it was to be all or nothing. He had seventeen dollars left. He would go to the Men’s Wear store and buy a shirt for seventeen dollars or less.
Herman, the owner of the Men’s Wear store, was most disarming. Robin explained to him that he needed to buy a shirt for an job interview, but could spend only up to seventeen dollars.
“It’s your lucky day!” exclaimed Herman gleefully. “We shall get you shoes, socks, shirt, belt, tie, and trousers, and all for seventeen dollars! And,” he added, “we shall get you a fashionable haircut as well.”
When it came to pay, Herman wouldn’t take a penny. “It’s now on the house,” he said.
Robin went to the interview feeling like the King of Siam. It was an interview for a minimum wage job. Why he needed to be interviewed by the business owner himself for the job was any one’s guess. Robin thought the interview went quite well.
“You’ve missed out on the job,” said the business owner at the end of the interview. “I’m sorry.”
Robin was disappointed.
“But there’s another job I’d like you to take,” said the business owner. “It pays a tidier sum – like $160,000 a year. Would you be interested?”
Robin was over the moon. He accepted. He left for home on a high.
However, it always pays to look both ways when crossing the road.