educator, mental health advocate, social entrepreneur, inspirational speaker, author, writer/contributor, program executive, and radio host

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An Unexpected Outcome



I went to an Italian restaurant in pursuit of a hearty meal.  After I finished my meal, I paid for my order and returned to work.

Later that day, I reviewed my meal receipt and discovered that the cashier didn’t charge me for my pasta entrée.  This is the reason I returned to the restaurant and told the cashier about the issue.  The cashier then called the manager to assist me.


I told the manager that I wanted to pay for the entrée that wasn’t included on my bill from my last visit.  The manager thanked me for the offer to pay for the entrée; then, the manager charged me.  I was surprised that the manager charged me for the entrée.  Nevertheless – in my heart – I wanted to do the right thing but I must admit that I really hoped that I wouldn’t be charged.


A couple of days later, I ate at a Chinese restaurant.  Once my meal was completed, I asked for the check.  It took a long time for the waiter to return with my check.  Approximately ten (10) minutes after I requested my check, the manager told me that there was an issue with their system and my check couldn’t be found.  At this point, I offered to wait a little while to pay for my meal; however, the manager told me not to worry about it.  Therefore, I finished my dessert, gave the server a tip, and

left feeling satisfied after my complimentary meal.

A few days later, I was about to park my car during a trip to visit my mom.  There were plenty of parking spaces available in front of her residence.  The easiest parking spot to access was behind a car parked on the street, but I decided to park in front of the car.  As I started to backup to park in front of this car, I noticed something on the ground waving in my headlights.  I thought to myself, “That couldn’t be, but is it?!?!”  I then looked a little closer and thought, “That’s money on the ground and big money.” I got out of my car to take a closer look and discovered that it was a $100 bill.


These series of fortunate events occurred after I returned to a restaurant to pay for a $9 entre.  The interesting thing is that I know I did the right thing by returning to pay for the entrée, but I was disappointed by the outcome.  Notwithstanding my feelings, I strongly believe that I later received an approximately $115 benefit because I did the right thing.  It might be a
coincidence, but I don’t think so.

The lesson learned was that doing the right thing may not lead to an expected outcome, but it can lead to an unexpected positive
benefit – even if the outcome is not the one wanted or expected.