Three Bucks

A few months ago I saw the sign advertising one of my favorite sandwiches on special—$2.69, just two seconds before I saw the parking ticket on my windshield—$50.

“Dang it!” Money was already tight, and there went the prospect of the sandwich. Now that I had to fit another $50 into my budget, I really couldn’t justify three bucks more when I had snacks in my bag. I put the ticket in my purse and went on with a typically busy day.

Heading home that evening, I pulled up behind a couple cars at a stoplight and saw a ragged-looking man amble across the street. He looked kind of disoriented with loose strides and widely swinging arms, his shirt partially untucked from the back of his dirty pants. He stopped in the middle of the intersection, stooped to pick up a discarded cigarette butt, and then continued. Even after the green light I watched him and felt sorry for the attractive young student he approached a few steps later.

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