Copyright 2016 Mario V. Farina
Shakespir Edition, License Notes
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Mario V. Farina
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Jimmy Hughes, a young kid in a wealthy family, was a smart lad. He figured out a scheme to set him up for life. On June 1, he asked his parents if he could do chores for them for every day of the current month.
Marty and Judy Hughes had a huge grass and weed problem. “Sure,” said Marty. “What would you charge to get rid of the weeds on the property and mow the grass?”
“How about this?” he responded: “Today, I’ll work on the job all day for one cent! Tomorrow, I’ll charge two cents. On the next day, four cents, etc., every day, doubling the amount of the previous day. My last day of work will be June 30, and I’ll ask to be paid on that day.
Marty and Judy were not fools and did some math. They saw that they would owe their son a total of one cent at the end of the first day, three cents at the second, seven cents at the end of the third, etc. They also calculated that they would owe $1.27 at the end of the first week and $10.23 at the end of the tenth day.
“Are you sure that’s the way you want to do it?” asked his mother.
“Sure!” responded the smart kid!
“They agreed. Accepting the offer would represent a good deal. They believed they could easily afford to pay whatever was the final total. They hadn’t carried out their estimate far enough to see what was happening.
Jimmy worked for 30 days, then presented his bill. He made out an invoice for the amount of $10,737,418.23. The parents laughed. “You’re a smart kid, Jimmy, “said Marty, “but awful in arithmetic.”
Jimmy asked his parents to check his calculations. His bill for the month was absolutely correct. Doubling his pay each day during June had worked out to $10,737,418.23. The parents were lucky the month had not been July. If it had been, Jimmy would have earned one cent less than twice as much.
Marty and Judy were responsible persons. They honored their obligation, though, doing this, bit considerably into their resources. Rather than being annoyed with the deal they had unwittingly agreed to, they were awed by their son’s business acumen. This pride was justified when, at a later date, he became a candidate for President of the United States.
Below is a table that shows how much Jimmy had earned every day during the month of June.
Day Amt. Earned
No. This Date
The sum of these amounts totaled $10,737,418.23.