The Millionaire and the Scrublady
William E Barton, (resource) Alice Gray, Stories for Heart
There was a certain Millionaire, who haht his Offices on the Second Floor of the First National Bank Buildinng. And when he goeth up to his Office he rideth in the Elevator, but when he goeth down, the he walketh.
And he is an Haughty Man, who once was poor, and hath risen in the World. He is a Self-Made Man who worshipeth his maker.
And he payeth his Rent regularly on the first day of the month, and he considereth not that there are Human Beings who run the Elevators, and who Clean the Windows, hanging at a great height above the Sidewalk, and who shovel Coal into the furnaces under the Boilers. Neither doth he at Christmas time remember any of them with a Tip or a Turkey.
And there is in that Building a Poor Woman who Scrubbeth the Stairs and the Halls. And he hath walked past her often but hath never seen her until Recently. For his head was high in the air, and he was thinking of More Millions.
Now it came to pass on a day that he left his Office, and started to walk down the Stairs.
And the Scrublady was halfway down; for she had begun at the top and was giving the stairs their First Onceover. And upon the topmost Stair, in a wet and soapy spot, there was Large Cake of Soap. And the Millionaire stepped on it.
Now the foot which he set upon the Soap flew eastward toward the sunrise, and the other foot started on an expedition of its own toward the going down of the sun. And the Millionaire sat down on the Topmost Step, but he did not remain there. As it had been his intention to Descend, so he Descended, but not in the manner of his Original Design. And as he descended he struck each step with a sound as if it had been a Drum.
And the Scrublady stood aside courteously, and let him go.
And at the bottom he arose, and considered whether he should rush into the Office of the Building and demand that the Scrublady should be fired; but he considered that if he should tell the reason there would be great Mirth among the occupants of the Building. And so he held his peace.
But since that day he taketh notice of the Scrublady, and passeth he with Circumspection.
For there is no one so high or mighty that he can afford to ignore any of his fellow human beings. For a very Humble Scrublady and a very common bar of Yellow Soap can take the mind of a Great Man off his Business Troubles with surprising rapidity.
Wherefore, consider these things, and count not thyself too high above even the humblest of the children of God.
Lest haply thou come down from thy place of pride and walk off with thy bruises aching a little more by reason of they suspicion that the Scrublady is Smiling in her Suds, and facing the day's of work the more cheerfully by reason of the fun though hast afforded her.
For these are solemn days, and he that bringeth a smile to the face of a Scrublady hat not lived in vain.