Let’s say that, on a snowy winter’s day, you are making an urgent but ultimately ill-thought driving expedition on a forest road. Swerving to avoid an unexpected but typically murderous deer, you wreck your car; the impact leaves you with a broken leg, among other injuries. Both your cell phone and the car’s electronics are useless, and that bastard Zeus chooses this convenient moment to escalate the snowstorm from sprinkle to blizzard.
But all is not lost. Help arrives in the nick of time in the shape of Jake, a wilderness-loving fellow who finds you and gets you out of the car and gets you to the nearest shelter: the log cabin where he lives. Jaks binds your wounds as best he can, which is actually quite skillfully, as he was a trauma surgeon before deciding to check out of city life and even now keeps medical supplies in his cabin. By the time he’s done saving you from the immediate danger of death, the snow is too deeo for anyone not named Thor to trudge through so y’all are snowbound in the cabin for a week. Jake shares his food and continues to nurse you.
At last things clear up enough for travel. You still need extensive medical caqre, so Jake wraps you as warmly as he can, puts you on a sledge, and drags you back to civilization. The nearest town has a decent hospital, and the ER docs there tell you that Jake unquestionably saved your life. Jake stays with you that first night, while awaiting the arrival of whatever loved ones you summoned to your side.
The next morning, when Jake is about to leave, he comes to say goodbye. As you were presumably not raised by wolves, you thank him and ask how you can repay him. After a moment’s hesitation, Jake says:
“Well, you don’t actually have to do anything, DoperName. You were in trouble, and the Golden Rule required me to help you. But … but the thing is, it’s been a hard winter. I found you because I was coming into town to work for this guy I know, live someplace with plumbing and a furnace through the worst of the snow. But somebody else got the job during that week we were snowbound. So…so if you want to–you don’t HAVE to–I’d appreciate it if you could maybe help me out financially. You willing to do that?”
Expressed as a function of your average monthly income, how big a reward are you willing to offer Jake?
Poll in a moment.