Can’t Clean Your Hands Of This Crime

, , , , , , | Working | December 13, 2017

(We have someone come in once a week to clean our house. She is, in a word, amazing; our house looks fantastic, and she always goes that extra mile to make it look even better. When a friend tells me that she is looking for a cleaner, I gladly recommend my cleaner. A few weeks later, my friend phones me.)

Friend: “This is a little awkward, but… have you noticed any money missing from your house?”

Me: “No. Oh, wait a second. [Eight-Year-Old Daughter] said that she can’t find some money that she’s been saving. She’s kind of careless, so I assumed she’d just misplaced it. Why do you ask?”

Friend: “I keep noticing small amounts missing, say, $5 or $10, and it’s always after [Cleaner] has been here.”

Me: “Oh, dear! I hope I didn’t let a thief into your house!”

Friend: “Tell you what: my husband has tomorrow off, and [Cleaner] is coming to clean. I’m going to deliberately leave $10 lying under a chair, and he’ll see what she does.”

Me: “Okay. Keep me posted.”

(The next day…)

Friend: “Well, she tried to steal the $10. She picked it up and put it in her pocket, and when my husband confronted her, she pretended that it was hers. We fired her on the spot.”

Me: “Guess I’ll have to do the same. Ugh. I’m so sorry about this!”

(I phone our cleaner.)

Me: “My friend told me what happened at her house. My little girl’s money is missing as well. Did you steal it?”

Cleaner: “What? No! Of course not! I would never do such a thing to a child!”

Me: “I’m thinking seriously about phoning the police.”

Cleaner: “NO! You don’t need to do that. Listen… I’m completely innocent, but just to show good faith, I’ll return… um, I mean give you half of the missing money. That’ll be $65. How’s that sound?”

Me: “I don’t remember telling you how much was missing.”

Cleaner: “…”

Me: “Forget it. You’re fired.”

(We changed our locks, of course, and I gave my daughter her money back out of my own pocket. To this day, I still miss my cleaner. She was such an awesome cleaner, and if she’d only taken money from ME, I might have turned a blind eye to her stealing.)

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