One For The Wall

Two college friends go to a bistro. One of them orders a large cup of coffee, takes a couple of sips, and then leaves the rest. Annoyed, the second one questions him, “Why did you waste it?” The boastful youngster replies, “I bought this cup not to consume but to do my bit to create employment.”

When we are young, frivolous ideologies often drive us. We think we are changing the world, but our execution doesn’t reflect our intention.

Years roll by. The youngsters are now successful professionals. One day, they plan to catch up at the same bistro. The first one orders coffee again, except this time it is a smaller cup that he finishes drinking. Surprised, the second one asks, “How come you have changed?” The mature professional explains, “I realized the perils of wasting hard-earned money now that I work for myself and have a family to support.”

When we are grownups, responsibilities drive us. Changing the world is no longer the agenda, instead our actions have a practical flavor.

Amused by his friend’s transformation, the second man chuckles, “I wonder what would happen if the ideologies of young and pragmatism of grownups co-existed!” The wisecrack leaves the first man pondering, and he decides to explore the concept.

Time flies. The first man ends up doing very well and now owns a bistro. The second one decides to visit the bistro to congratulate him and notices one of the walls is splashed with yellow stickers and an unusual hoarding on the top – ‘One for the Wall.’ As he wonders, he overhears the customer ahead of him in the queue to place her order – “Two cups – one of them for the wall.” The cashier hands her a cup of coffee and a discounted yellow receipt. The lady walks over to the wall, pastes her receipt, and then proceeds to drink her coffee.

The man is intrigued and questions his bistro-owner friend as soon as he sees him. The friend tells him to wait. In a short while, a homeless man enters the coffee shop, goes to the wall, takes off a yellow sticker, and calls out to the cashier, “One for the wall.” The bistro-owner explains, “By having a wall co-supported by the restaurant and its patrons, I can help out the destitute with a cup of coffee, without subjecting them to the embarrassment of begging for it.”

The aging process is not limited to our body; our head and heart also need to evolve with time. You see, at each instance of a successful merger of ideologies with pragmatism – the world becomes a little better place!

Ideologies, Adapted, Leader


  1. Very beautiful story to elicit the timeless wisdom.

  2. Inspiring story,..!!

  3. Nice articulation Arun

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One For The Wall - Arun Nathani Blog