Paying (The Difference) Forward

Filed under Noted

I’m splitting the cost three ways on a $100 gift certificate for a journalist who has been indispensable to one of my projects this year. Yesterday, I sent the screenwriter, who is in charge of procuring the House of Pies legal tender, a check for $34.

I had a college room mate who ALWAYS shorted me on the extra penny whenever the bills were an odd amount. During the time we lived together, I probably spent only 80 cents more than she did on bills, but still…it’s the principle!

What irritated me most about that situation was that I never felt like I could confront her about her pettiness, without being, well, petty myself.

Since graduation, I’ve probably spent $8000 in extra one dollar increments on odd numbered payments because I was that annoyed by that extra three or four penny gouge I felt every month.

Today I received an email from the screenwriter: “You get extra points for sending the 100th dollar by sending in $34, not $33.”

I’m pleased that he noticed my gesture, but sad that paying the difference is so unusual that he had to thank me for it.

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