Friday, December 29, 2006

Be Careful What You Wish For.

I've been reading Jean Shepherd's In God We Trust; All Others Pay Cash (parts of which were the inspiration for A Christmas Story), and it has reminded me of the rituals of my own childhood. I understand that I am not nearly as far removed from this aspect of life as some, but still, looking back, I am surprised by the things that we did and endured simply to be accepted by our counterparts. In particular, as boys, we would sit around telling less than savory jokes about bodily functions; the kinds of jokes that one would never even dream of telling his parents. One in particular stands out in my mind...it took many forms, but the outcome was always the same...

It went something like this;

Three men were walking in the desert (no explanation here as to why they are in the desert) when they came across a cliff. Now, this was no ordinary cliff; this cliff had the power to change you into anything you wanted to be (again, no explanation as to how they knew this or why this cliff was magic, it just was). All you had to do was think about what you wanted to be, run to the edge of the cliff and then yell it out as you jumped over the edge. The first guy thought of what he wanted, ran to the edge of the cliff and yelled, "AN EAGLE!" Immediately he was transformed into an eagle, and he flew away. The second guy repeated the process and yelled out that he wanted to be a fish as he got to the edge. Immediately he turned into a fish, landed in the river at the bottom of the canyon and swam away. The third guy was having trouble making a decision. When he finally figured it out he started running toward the cliff. Just as he got to the edge he tripped over his own shoelace. Falling face-first over the cliff he yelled, "AAAH CRAPP!" and landed with a splat at the bottom of the canyon.

I know it was juvenile, but hey, so were we! That joke still makes me chuckle as I think about the many situations in which it was relevant; sleepovers, recess, when the teacher left the room, etc. As I think about the kinds of things kids these days are aware of through the internet and TV, I realize how innocent that joke truly was...

Food for thought (haven't done that for a while):
What would you wish for?

1 comment:

Say No to Crack said...

Crrraaappp ... nice one. Next time I am standing on a magic cliff, I think I'll wish for something much better than to be an eagle. I heard eagles aren't very good typists.