Instead of gorging on pasta when he bought an Olive Garden $100 “Never Ending Pasta Pass,” Utah man Matt Tribe used the pass 111 times to feed other people, including the homeless.
Tribe bought the pass in September, but he wasn’t sure if he’d successfully ordered it as Olive Garden’s website crashed during the sale period. To his surprise, he arrived home from work one day and found the pass waiting in a package on his doorstep.
“I lobbed a phone call to Olive Garden’s customer relations department to inquire as to whether take-out was permitted with my newly obtained pass,” Tribe wrote on his Random Acts of Pasta blog. “The answer? A resounding yes.”
Tribe began driving to random Olive Gardens around Utah and carrying out free meals to his friends, as well as his UPS delivery guy and even a few strangers. He would often drive to different Olive Garden locations and speed to arrive before their 10 p.m. closing times, usually spilling soup in the backseat of his car to make the most out of the seven-week pass.
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Tribe eventually decided to give food to the homeless and learned an “incredible” lesson in generosity. He was driving through town when he saw a homeless woman sleeping on a bench and approached her.
“She thanked me for the pasta and said she was going to share it with her friends,” Tribe recalled. “The initial thought of someone who has nothing was to share with someone else – that’s pretty incredible.”
Tribe retrieved extra bags of pasta from his car and returned with more food for the woman’s friends.
Blogging later about the experience, Tribe said he was still “blown away” that the woman’s first thought was to share with her friends.