A dollar is not what most people would call a large sum of money. When you “lend” someone a dollar, you wouldn’t think that there would be any major implication beyond the very possible potential to never get that dollar back. However, you can indeed discover quite a bit about an individual when you lend to them a dollar.
One recent morning, not too dissimilar from any other morning during the course of a typical work week, I was presented with the opportunity to make such a discovery about the person I was working with that day. Stopping at a usual breakfast joint along the way, I placed my simple order for a savory breakfast sandwich and bottle of Snapple, then
proceeded to hit the can for a hand wash. Upon exit of the facilities I was immediately greeted by my coworker, who was anxiously awaiting my return so that he could ask me, “Can I borrow a dollar?” in order to complete his order as he was “just a dollar short, and he would pay me back.” Of course thinking not much of it at the time I was able to contribute to his financial needs and once receiving our food, returned to the company van in order to proceeded on to the job.
Later in the morning, I noticed he had been rummaging around in the console and while I didn’t observe directly what he was doing due to the fact that I was driving, it did become immediately clear shortly after pulling onto the job site what it was he had been scavenging for. “Here’s that dollar back,” he says as he hands me one hundred cents worth of change which had been rattling around in the cup holders of the van’s console. What do I say at that point? I guess nothing having realized that, this person felt it necessary from a moral standpoint to reimburse me for my trouble but thought nothing of it to do so with money which was simply “lying around” and very clearly someone else’s. Also realizing then that one of those other people was ME as indeed I had left some of that change there over the course of whenever.
“Eh, thanks,” I say as I’m handed some of my own money as payment for my money and simply return it to the cup holders from where it came.
Even though it was “just” a dollar, that dollar bought for me a priceless amount of information about this person.