After two weeks of thinking about it, here is what Stuart Goldberg has decided to do with the $500 he found in the middle of 15th Street:
Fifty dollars goes to the nuclear freeze campaign.
Fifty goes to his mother debts .
Another fifty goes to his father more debts .
Thirty each goes to Greenpeace a save-the-whales organization , Ralph Nader to do with it what he will , Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union.
Two hundred goes for a one-day blowout in New York for Stuart and his wife. Stuart figures $200 will just about cover round-trip trainfare, theater tickets and dinner out.
The remaining $30 goes into Stuart's pocket. "I'll just keep it around to spend on anything that strikes my whim and fancy," he says.
Before that last dollop of dollars is gone, both Stuart and I would like to thank the readers who wrote in to suggest charities that deserved some of Stuart's found money.
I received about 55 letters, all of them trumpeting excellent causes. Stuart would like all 55 of you to know that his failure to give money to your organizations is no reflection on your worthiness, or theirs. "The trouble is, five hundred bucks only goes so far, particularly when you spread it around, as I did," he said.
Interestingly, about 25 other readers wrote in to urge that Stuart spend the money on himself, and himself alone. Their reasoning: by trying to return the money to the rightful owner, as he did, Stuart has already proven himself exceptionally generous.
"Let Mr. Goldberg make one of his own days a little brighter," writes Gordon McDougall of Rockville. "He truly appears to deserve it."
"Diogenes has already given him a gold star for his selfless honesty," adds M. B. Lucas of Annapolis.
Stuart isn't fitting himself out for any halos, however. "Anyone would have done what I decided to do--give some of it away," he said.
You believe that one, folks, and I've got a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to try to sell you. Congratulations to a guy who has a conscience.