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A traveling salesman had come to the end of a long day and was very hungry. He had not made many sales and was feeling a little frustrated with his results. He decided to stop and get something to eat and mull over his next step.
He stopped in town, parked on Main Street and looked around. He found two restaurants side by side. Above each there was a sign.
The one on the left said “Food, more expensive but worth it” and the one on the right said “Food, average, cheap and will fill you up.” The man stood for a moment and looked at both signs. He weighed his choices and after deliberating for a few minutes, chose the restaurant on the right.
He stepped in and was greeted by the maitre’d who showed him to the only table in the place. It was in the center of the restaurant and was circled by chairs with people sitting and sipping cool drinks with umbrellas and limes.
He thought it was rather odd and asked the maitre’d who all the people were sitting and sipping. The maitre’d replied “Oh, don’t worry about them. They are just here to see the show.”
The man asked “What show?”
The maître’d replied “The show that starts in a few minutes. What can I get you to drink?”
The man placed his drink order and waited somewhat nervously as he wondered what sort of restaurant he had wandered into. The waiter returned a few minutes later and placed the drink on the table and said “Hello, I’m your waiter this evening. Let me describe our special for you.”
The man thought to himself “Well, at least this is normal. Thank goodness.”
The waiter said “For our special this evening the chef has prepared an average dish using locally available average ingredients and prepared it using only average tasting sauces and wrapped it up in dough made only with average flour and served on a plate with average bread.”
The man thought to himself “Well, that does not sound too bad” and said to the waiter “I’ll have it.”
The waiter replied “Very good sir” and walked away. The man noticed that suddenly all of the people in the restaurant had moved a little closer to his one and only table. This seemed a little odd to him and made a mental note to ask the waiter when he came back with his food.
In a few minutes the waiter returned carrying a large tray with a steaming pie in the middle of it. He proceeded to set it down on the table. The man looked at the pie and said “Hmm, this looks good, what is it called”
The waiter replied “Grasshopper Pie.”
The man said “What? Grasshopper Pie? I’ve never heard of it! What’s in it?”
The waiter replied “Locally available average ingredients mixed with an average sauce and wrapped in average dough.”
The man thought about it for a second and said “Ok, I’ll try it” and with that took his fork and started to eat. As he took the first mouthful, he noticed that the other people sitting in the restaurant were quiet and watching him with renewed interest. And they had stopped sipping their limed up umbrella drinks.
The man chewed for just a second or two and then jumped up while spitting out the bite he had just taken and started wiping his mouth furiously with his napkin as if it were on fire. He then grabbed his drink and took a long gulp trying to wash the taste out of his mouth.
He yelled for the waiter.
The waiter returned and the man said “What is this?” pointing at the dish in front of him.
“What you ordered sir” the waiter replied. The man then pointed again and gestured with his fork “That is not what I asked you. What is in this pie?”
The waiter replied “Locally available average ingredients mixed with an average sauce and wrapped with average dough. Why, is there something wrong with it?”
The man replied somewhat angrily “Yes! It tastes terrible!” Immediately all of the other people sitting in the restaurant started passing money back and forth amongst themselves.
The man now really angry said “And who are all of these people passing money around?”
The waiter replied “Well sir, these are the people here for the show I told you about and they have been betting on whether or not you would eat your dish. I must say sir; there are a lot of them whom you have made very happy, including me. We all bet that you would not eat more than a bite of the pie.”
The waiter gestured to one particular group of people “Those people over there in that small group, they bet that you would eat more than one bite. Only those two people (pointing across the room) bet that you would eat the whole pie. They always bet on the longshot. Will there be anything else?”
The man was really angry by now and said “This is outrageous. All I wanted was something to eat at a cheap price. And now look at me. I am still hungry, the center of a show and I’m really angry! That dish was terrible!”
The waiter replied “What did you expect sir. You ordered Grasshopper Pie.”
The moral of the story…when you are hungry for change it’s better to pay more for what you really want rather than try to make a terrible choice into an average result. Remember that many people who know you will gladly watch and bet on the outcome with no other interest than their own self amusement and lastly, Grasshopper Pie is really what it sounds like and it does taste terrible. You get what you pay for.