08-Feb-2011 15:21

Do we all work too hard?

A post I read today about 'acts of kindness to our children' reminded us of a well-published (apocryphal?) story actually related to me by a Rabbi and teacher years ago

The story goes:

A man returned home from work late again, tired and irritated, to find his 5 yr. old son waiting for him at the door, "Daddy, may I ask you a question?"

"Yeah, sure. What is it?" replied the father. "Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?"

"That's none of your business! What makes you ask such a thing?" The father said angrily.

"I just wanted to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?" pleaded the little boy.

"If you must know, I make £20 an hour."

Looking up, he said, "Daddy, may I borrow £10 please?"

The father was furious. "If the only reason you wanted to know how much money I make is just so you can borrow some to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you're being selfish. I work long, hard hours every day and don't have time for such childish games."

The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The father sat down and started to get madder about his little boy's questioning. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money? After an hour he calmed down.
He started to think he might have been a little too hard on his son. Maybe there was something he really needed to buy with that £10.

...And he didn't often ask for money…

The father went to his son's room and opened the door. "Are you asleep, son?" he asked. "No, daddy, I'm awake," replied the boy.

"I've been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier," said the father. "It's been a long day and I took my aggravations out on you. Here's the £10 you asked for."

The little boy sat up straight, beaming. "Oh, thank you daddy!" he said. Then reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some more crumpled bills. He counted the money, then looked up at his father.

"Why did you want more money if you already had some?" the father asked.

"Because I didn't have enough, but now I do," the little boy replied.

"Daddy, I have £20 now. Can I buy an hour of your time?"

Enjoy your work but remember your loved ones too....

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Contributed by Sam Prince on 12-Feb-2011 19:08

That's a beautiful story.
Thank you very much.

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