Sunday, February 26, 2012

"How's the soup?"

An elder man walks into a deli in New York City. He takes off his cap, removes his London Fog jacket, and places them on the coat rack near the front door. He saunters over to a table for two and sits down. He busts out a few newspapers and starts reading........
"Hi, I'm Roger. I'll be helping you today. Do you know what you would like or do you need a menu?"

The man replies, "I'm okay without a menu, kid. I'll take the soup of the day, glass of water, and some oyster crackers please."
"No problem sir. I'll have that right up for you."

Some time rolls by and the man continues to read the papers, Roger brings over the soup, the water, and crackers to the table.
"Soup, crackers, and water...just as ordered. Let me know if you need anything else."

The man looks over the paper at the table and then puts the paper back up to read. Roger has a slight look of "huh?" on his face but heads to his other tables to wait on them.

10 minutes roll by and Roger notices the soup and crackers haven't been touched.....
"Excuse me sir? Is there anything wrong?"
The man puts down the paper and crosses his legs...."No, I don't believe anything is wrong?"
"How is the soup?"
The man smiles..."I don't know how the soup is..."
"Is it too hot? too cold? Did you order a different soup?
"Sonny, take a second and look at the table. Is there anything missing or out of place?"

"Soup, water, crackers.......seems like your order is here. Did I make a mistake?"
The man's smile is as soft as your pillow after a long day...."You made no mistakes with my order."

Roger is starting to feel like this is a joke..."I don't get it sir. You have your order. You've been here for 30 minutes. And I have no clue what's wrong..."

The man leans over to Roger's ear and says, "When I plan on eating my food, I don't like to use my hands. So before you loose your cool, kid, go get me a spoon so I can taste this cold soup. And remember, not all of us are going to let you know about a mistake. Sometimes you have to figure it out. That's life. Like how I figured how to sell this diner 23 years ago and start a new company.........have you ever heard of Boars Head Meats?"

Roger - "Your food is on me sir. And I apologize for the tardiness on the spoon."

"Not to worry kid, I had one in my pocket the whole time. It's what you learn after being around long enough. You should always be prepared to eat your own meal. Or someone else will eat it for you."
The old man ate the cold soup, tipped Roger for his help, and strolled out into the NY streets whistling off to the next place.......

We remember this story often as it speaks to today's world of hurry, the fast lane, and "game." When you find out how to beat the game.....things slow down and you can truly enjoy your journey....until then you get to choose....are you Roger or the Old Man?

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