A bit of good musical business from some friends.
A Song I Really Like for Some Reason
If Earth Were to Fall Into Jupiter’s Red Spot
These Things Happen
Jokes I Like to Tell
Once there was a young boy, aged ten, who was an insufferable optimist. It cannot be emphasized too strongly how much his perennial sunshiney optimism was truly insufferable. He was a tiresome burden to everyone who was acquainted with him for more than ten minutes or so.
Of course, given the nature of the case, his parents were driven to the point of distraction. They didn’t know what to do with him. They were fearful of what kind of life he would have if he went off to college that way. They also were troubled by the high levels of exasperation that they felt. They loved their son dearly, but his constant refusal to see the negative side of anything was unlike any burden they had ever felt before. It brought to their minds the definition of a pessimist drafted by Ambrose Bierce: “A philosophy forced upon the convictions of the observer by the disheartening prevalence of the optimist with his scarecrow hope and his unsightly smile.”
Eventually they sought professional help, going to a counselor they found who (remarkably) specialized in this kind of thing. He was thoughtful, but believed that he could help. “It seems cruel,” he said, “but what you need to do is bring some sort of undeniable and stark disappointment into his life. It doesn’t work all the time, but I really have seen good success with it.”
The parents went home and talked about it at great length. They hated to do it, but they finally settled on a really disappointing Christmas present for their son—as Christmas was approaching. What they settled on for his Christmas present was a delivery of a truckload of manure, deposited in their driveway on Christmas Eve, after their son had gone to bed. His bedroom was on the opposite side of the house, and so they thought they could get the present delivered without him discovering it.
When the parents got up Christmas morning, they looked around for their son, but he was nowhere to be found. Eventually, his mother looked out the front window, and saw her boy with their snow shovel, enthusiastically shoveling the pile of manure. With her heart sinking, she called her husband and they both stepped out on the front porch. “Son, what are you doing?” She called.
“Mom!” he replied. “With all this manure, there’s bound to be a pony in here somewhere!”
Don’t Tell Me God Doesn’t Have a Sense of Humor
Letters of Marital Counsel
This book is the third in a series of counseling books, all of them made up of fictional letters. In this book, letters are addressed to an array of married couples who are struggling with different challenges.
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