I don't do relaxation well. I consider Fridays my day off, but I usually don't know what to do with myself. My go to relaxation or entertainment is to head to the casino for a few hours of fun and relaxation. It's not exactly relaxing, but it takes my mind off myself for a while... whether I win or not.

poker money
sometimes I win!

One time many years ago, after I decided it was time to head back home, I turned around and saw something about 10 feet in front of me. I thought it was a folded piece of paper initially, but as I stepped closer I saw it was money. I opened it up and it was a hundred dollar bill.

I think I did was anyone else would have initially done. I looked around to see if there was anyone walking away; nope. My next thought was instinct; I stepped to the desk and told the guy there that I had found it on the floor, and I tried to give it to him; yup, I'm an honest guy... some people think I'm too honest at times. lol

Anyway, that's when things got strange. He wouldn't touch it; tried hard not to even get near it. Casino's are very strange about their employees handling money in certain areas, and for some reason it freaked him out. He asked me if I would take it to the security window and tell them the story, and pointed out where to go.

I went to the security window and told my tale. It seemed like they didn't want to believe I'd found money and was turning it in. As I started thinking about it, I balanced my honesty with the belief that in a casino everyone is on camera no matter where they go. If I just put a $100 bill in my pocket, wouldn't someone have seen that and called me out on it? After all, I go relatively often and I'm known in the poker room; wouldn't that have made some kind of difference?

Apparently not. No one seemed to care that I was trying to be honest. Instead, I cost them time because by my act of honesty, we all had to go through a lot of paperwork; sigh... I signed 3 pieces of paper, they took a copy of my driver's license and got all my other information. If no one claimed it in 12 days it would be mine; how's that for a strange life?

As I was heading towards my car I ran the entire scenario in my mind. I was thinking that it's no wonder so many people would rather not be bothered by thinking about the ethical ramifications of just taking the money and running, so to speak, if they found it on the street. At this juncture it's hard to blame anyone who did something like that, circumstances notwithstanding.

For instance, if you came across multiple bags of money that looked like it came from a bank, that would be unethical because you'd know it would belong to a bank. If you came across thousands in cash out in the woods or some other place, if it's me I'd be thinking that had to be illegal money of some kind. Would you turn it in because of worrying that there could be a trace on the money. That and, well, what kind of trouble could be waiting, either because someone saw you, or you might make a mistake and leave a telling sign that you was there? In any case, would it matter if you were ethical?

I find the answer not to be as simple as that. I've found $10 in the past and, after looking around, kept it. Who'd bother trying to find someone for $10 if it was an almost impossible situation?

If I'd found $100 while walking through the park, would I leave it on the ground since I wouldn't know who might find it or not, or is it finder's keepers? Is it an ethical dilemma or a logical one at that juncture? Do things change when you do the calculation in your mind and determine the odds aren't great that the person who lost it would be the one who found it?

I don't know, and that troubles me. After going through what happened at the casino years ago, it sometimes makes me question the merits of my actions. Have we moved into a time where acts of honesty aren't expected and aren't wanted anymore? I mean, in the case of the casino and poker room, a lot of people spend thousands in a day, so what's $100 to them? It would be a big deal to me.

For once I don't have any answers, so I put it out to you. What would your ethics be in such situations? Is this an ethical decision or a logical one? I still feel I made the right decision at the casino but in the aftermath of everything else, a small part of me wonders if it was worth it. What to you think?

Oh yeah; I never got a call from the casino, so I've always told myself that someone claimed it. 🙂