The Sunday New York Times has a section called Metropolitan Diary in which readers send in short stories about their lives. I read it every week because the stories are interesting but mostly because they are short. Last week, I read one story that made me laugh but also showed how adjusting your attitude and presentation can create an entirely new outlook for those around you. Here is the story.
I sold pizza from a stand at the New York World’s Fair in 1964. I charged a quarter a slice — highway robbery! — and most of my transactions were uneventful. Sometimes, though, when I would get down to two or three mismatched slices, I would get an order for just that many. Initially, I handed them over as is. That invariably led to complaints about one slice being so much smaller than the others. Eventually, I devised a solution. I trimmed the larger slices to match the smallest one so that they matched and served them that way. Then I would hold up the extra bit I had just cut off. “By the way,” I’d say, “here’s a little free bonus slice just for you.” Presto! Complaints turned into tips.
Rather than dwell on customers complaining, our pizza man took control of the situation and came up with a solution that cost little in time or money but made all the difference in the world to his customers. Here’s to innovative thinking and creative solutions. If only we could all see our pizza slices as just the right size with the occasional joy of the bonus slice.
This week’s selection is:
The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy
Charlie Mackesy offers inspiration and hope in uncertain times in this beautiful book, following the tale of a curious boy, a greedy mole, a wary fox and a wise horse who find themselves together in sometimes difficult terrain, sharing their greatest fears and biggest discoveries about vulnerability, kindness, hope, friendship and love. The shared adventures and important conversations between the four friends are full of life lessons that have connected with readers of all ages.