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Saturday, April 27, 2013

How honest would you be?

A couple of days ago, a pair of burglars were chased by the police. In a small town in West-Flanders, they tried to get rid of their pursuers by throwing a safe full of money into the road.

Through the impact, the safe burst open and a rain of 500, 200, 100 and 50 Euro bills landed on the street. In only seconds a lot of people turned up, and began to grab away. Some of them easily got hold of 20,000 Euro or more.

It took a few minutes before the police arrived at the scene. By that time, half of the contents of the safe (around 400,000 Euro, accoring to the owner) had 'disappeared'. Some of the bystanders were still hanging around, their hands filled with bills. Of course they had to hand them in.

One of those bystanders, a guy who lives near the spot where the safe landed, told the local TV station he had no intentions of keeping the money but he had not been able to keep himself from grabbing around.

What would you do? And try to be quite truthful about it. I would not have tried to pick up money from the street. Just think about it, you are not there on your own. Your neighbors are there as well, as it would not be impossible that one of them would tell the police you took some money. No, you'd be stupid to take this money.

But what in other circumstances? I honestly admit I'd keep money I find when there is no ID with it. Once I was in a big DIY shop and there was a bill of 20 Euro on the floor. Nobody around, no camera, so the 20 € landed in my purse. A free treat to waffles, coffee and cream...  And sometimes I pick up a coin. One euro, two euro. Nothing big. I've never come across a purse full of bills yet, although I could use some more money. Who doesn't???

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