Book Review - Pay It Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde
Based on a comment from my boss at work, I found and read the book Pay It Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde. It's an incredible story and concept that has powerful implications.
Trevor McKinney, a 12 year boy, is given an assignment by his teacher, Reuben St. Clair. Think up a project that will change the world. Trevor comes up with the concept of Pay It Forward. The concept is simple... you do something important and valuable for 3 people. Instead of taking payment for it, those three people have to "pay it forward" by doing something for 3 other people. Through multiplication, pretty soon everyone is looking for ways to do good to others. Trevor picks three people to do something good for, but it appears that all three people fail to pay it forward. But unknown to Trevor, those good deeds do get paid forward, and soon the concept and movement jumps to the west coast and catches on. An enterprising reporter traces down the source of the project and Trevor is highlighted to the country as someone who has changed the world. But tragedy strikes the family and things don't turn out well. But the movement takes off and changes the world.
So how'd I find this book? I boss at work used the phrase "pay it forward" in conjunction with an email I had sent him. I also had another blogger use that phrase in an email exchange. After using Google to figure out exactly what it meant, I checked out the book from the library. Very glad I did. The idea of "paying it forward" is powerful and would change lives if it ever caught on. I'm not so naive to think that something like this would ever happen, but there's nothing to prevent me from implementing this in my own life. Sorta like changing the world one person at a time.