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"Something to think about"
Once upon a time there was a rich man who always wanted to do some good. One day he noticed the grim conditions that a poor carpenter lived in. The rich man called the carpenter in and commissioned him to build a wonderful house. "I want this to be an ideal cottage, use only the best materials, employ only the best workmen, and spare no expense." He said that he was going on a long journey and expected the house to be finished when he returned.
The carpenter saw that this was his great opportunity. Therefore, he skimped on the materials, hired inferior workers at low wages, covered their mistakes with paint, and he cut corners where ever he could. When the rich man returned the carpenter brought him the keys and said, "I have followed your instructions and have built you your house as you told me."
"I am so very glad about that," said the rich man; and handing back the keys to the carpenter said, "Here are the keys, they are yours. I had you build the house for yourself. You and your family are to have the house as my gift to you all."
In the years that followed the carpenter never ceased to regret the way in which he had cheated himself. "Had I only known," he would say to himself, "that I was building a house for myself."
Original author unknown
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