The friend discount

My second cousin works as an electrician. People in his neighborhood often ask him to do work for them, and they tend to either ask for or expect what might be termed "the friend discount." In other words, they want him to charge less than the value of his work. My cousin, being a kind man, often finds himself doing just that. Isn't this backwards?

Here's the question. Who is the better friend, the one who expects a discount or the one who offers a bonus?

If my friend were an electrician, and I needed work done, I'd ask him to do it because I'd want to give him business. Knowing that he does excellent work, I'd also give him a glass of lemonade or make him lunch as he worked. What's more, I might slip a few extra dollars into the final payment to show my appreciation not only for his work, but for our friendship.

The best friendships flourish when neither party expects the other to give special treatment, yet both parties dole out special treatment in abundance.


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