The Other Side of the Story - Visitation Rites

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The Other Side of the Story - Giving People the Benefit of the Doubt

We often act without thinking how our behavior will be viewed. We don't imagine that others will interpret our actions as negative - especially when we know we've done nothing wrong. Remember: Honest doings sometimes look like...

Cheesy Dealings

Mrs. Ross stopped by the local grocery store and bought three tubs of cheese for the traditional Shavuos cheesecake. That afternoon, she and her daughter Yehudis were in the process of mixing the batter. When they had used half the cheese Mrs. Ross said, "Taste it." Yehudis dipped a finger into the batter and tasted it. "Ick!" she said, wrinkling her nose. "What's wrong?" asked Mrs. Ross. She took a spoon and tasted it herself. It was awful! The cheese was spoiled! It must have been spoiled when she bought it. "Yehudis," she said, "please go to the store. Tell the storekeeper that I bought this cheese today and it was spoiled. Take these containers with you and exchange them for three fresh ones." She gave Yehudis the three containers: One full, one half-full and one empty. The next week, Mrs. Ross went shopping. As she was checking out, the storekeeper commented: "Mrs. Ross, I hope you don't mind my asking, but is it necessary to eat one and a half containers of spoiled cheese before you return the rest?"

True, the storekeeper erred by not judging favorably. But Mrs. Ross was also to blame: She should have realized that returning empty containers might create the false impression that she had eaten the contents. We help others judge favorably when we explain our questionable behavior.

The Other Side of the Story Archives

Based on "The Other Side of the Story" by Mrs. Yehudis Samet, ArtScroll Series

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