So far in my life, I have been a soldier, a small business owner, a small town newspaper publisher, and an author, to name just a few. And while I have enoyed all of those endeavors, in my next life, I want to be a karma deliveryman, serving up both the good and the bad that people deserve.
What, you don’t believe in karma? I do. What goes around comes around. Not always today or tomorrow, or even next year. But I have seen it happen enough that I really do believe we reap what we sow.
My folks were never rich, they were just working-class people trying to get by, but they always taught me that the right thing was the only thing to do. They never used the word karma, it probably wasn’t in fashion for their generation, but however they phrased it, I always remembered the lesson.
I explained that to someone just the other day. In yesterday’s blog I wrote that we spent about $1,100 at Lowe’s purchasing hardware for installing hurricane shutter panels on our house. This consisted of an upper and lower unit that mounts above and below our windows that we put the acrylic shutter panels into when a storm is coming. When we were checking out, I told the clerk we had eleven upper units and eleven lower units of one size, and it wasn’t until we paid for everything and were outside loading it into the back of the Pacifica that I realized we actually had fourteen of each because I had forgotten three other windows that were smaller but had to use the same size hardware.
I went back inside to the same clerk and told her what I had done and showed her my receipt. She rang up three more of the upper units, which came to a little over $90, but I explained to her that there were actually six units total, three upper and three lower, making the amount due somewhere around $180. A manager happened to be standing there, and both he and the clerk thanked me for my honesty. He told me that very few people would do that.
But as I told him, that would only lead to bad karma for me. I have been blessed to make a very good living writing my books, for which I am very grateful. But if I was to knowingly cheat somebody like that, who knows what might happen? My sales could drop off overnight, and the next time you heard from me, I would be standing on a street corner somewhere with a cardboard sign that says “Will Write For Food.”
Of course, things don’t always work out that way. We had an experience when we were building our bus conversion where we bought ten sheets of rather expensive paneling for the walls, along with two sheets of cheap white melamine paneling that would be used in the shower enclosure. We bought a bunch of other stuff at the same time, and after we checked out and were loading everything into our truck, Terry and I both said that the bill seemed lower than we expected.
Back at Elkhart Campground, Terry looked at the receipt and realized that they had charged us the lower price for all twelve sheets of paneling, cheating themselves out of somewhere around $250. I drove right back to Menards and found the manager on duty and explained what had happened. He told me there was nothing he could do about it. I said sure there was something he could do, otherwise, his balance sheet was going to come up $250 short at some point. I suggested he cancel the sale of ten sheets of the less expensive paneling and give me a refund, then ring them back up at the correct price and I would pay him and we would be even. He told me that was way too much trouble, and when I insisted there must be something he could do to make it right, he told me if I didn’t leave he would call security. That was late in the afternoon, and I went back the next day and spoke to the store manager, who basically told me it wasn’t worth their time and effort to do all of that and that the company wrote a certain amount of money into their daily budget for loss and shrinkage. Well, at least I tried.
In other news, I said in yesterday’s blog that I hope to have a 5,000 word writing day, but it actually turned out to be 7,700 words, and I am past the halfway point in my new Big Lake book. While I was doing that, Terry proofed several chapters I had written the other day, and after I made her corrections I sent them off to the first of my other proofreaders. Things are definitely moving right along.
Be sure to enter our latest Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of The Ghost from the Sea, book 8 in my pal Bobbi Holmes’ popular Haunting Danielle mystery series about an Oregon seaside bed and breakfast with a resident ghost of a previous owner who has been dead for almost ninety years. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.
Exceptional post Nick – I find it fascinating when some make doing the right thing and prioritizing the greater good complicated – Karma is always there and will have her way.