Have you ever done someone a favor and been rewarded with a “tip”? What did you do with it? Save it? Spend it? Half and half? Did you think for even one second, about what you should do with it? It is yours. You earned it, but what then? If you are like me, you operate on “automatic” most of the ti me, so perhaps this little book has come just in ti me to teach us to be mindful, rather than mindless. Here’s the scoop.…
When Mrs. Markowitz was away, young Eli Katz performed many favors for her. I don’t know how she would have gone away without his help; he fed her fish, brought in her mail, etc., so now she has “tipped” him. She has given him $5.00. Well brought up, Eli first gives tzedaka. Now he is home free, or is he? Obviously, the rest of the money is his. Like most of us, he indulges himself and fritters the money away on drinks, snacks and toys. But soon, the drink is drunk, the snacks are consumed, the toys lose their novelty and the satisfaction Eli feels for having helped an appreciative neighbor has dissolved. Eli feels empty. Not until an opportunity presents itself for Eli to do something positive with his remaining dollar does he feel happy. So what do we learn from this story (and I mean all of us, not just the children for whom the story was written, ages 3 – 6)? That’s for you to figure out. It is perhaps, the secret to happiness. The illustrations are ebullient and colorful — just right for the intended age group.
Marcia W. Posner, Ph.D., of the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County, is the library and program director. An author and playwright herself, she loves reviewing for JBW and reading all the other reviews and articles in this marvelous periodical.