George and the Best Day Ever!

Did I ever tell you this story? It's actually one of my favorite stories and I tell it a lot. In fact, usually after I meet someone for the first time, I shake their hand and tell this story. For no reason whatsoever.

I like it that much.

Which is why I'm surprised I've never told it to you.

Anyway, this story takes place, centuries ago in China. There was a widower, horse farmer who only had one son. For the sake of this story we will call the horse farmer George. Times had been hard for George, in the horse bidness. All of his horses had died, except for one. His prized mare. The villagers in the nearby town were kinda gossipy. Which isn't that strange, most villagers at that time were kinda gossipy. There was no television or movies, so gossip was their only form of entertainment. The villagers made a trip out to George's farm so they could be all gossipy.

"George!" they all said in unison. (Little known fact about ancient China, all villagers spoke in unison. It sounds cool, but it was actually kinda spooky.) "We were all thinking how jacked up it is, that all of your horses died, except this one. Dude! How jacked up is that?!!" (Another little known fact: People in ancient China really liked the phrase, "Jacked-up" and they used it all the time. It was kind of annoying). George had never really gotten used to the villagers speaking in unison, which was why he had moved out to the farm in the first place. The whole thing just creeped him out. Despite the acute and sudden case of the heebie-jeebies the villagers had given him, he managed to maintain his composure. He answered their question simply:

"I don't know. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't."

All of the villagers left thinking George was a re-tard. But it took them 15 minutes of practice before they could say it in unison. (Keep in mind this is early century China. They didn't realize calling someone a re-tard was politically incorrect).

The next day George woke to find out that his last horse had fled it's enclosure. He blinked at the empty pen for a few minutes before going back into his house and making himself a nice cup of tea.

The villagers came back to the farm later that afternoon. "George this is jacked! You have lost your last horse! How will you make a living now? Surely you can see how jacked this situation is?!!" George looked at the villagers and said,

"I don't know. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't."

The villagers left again stating that George was a re-tard, but this time they didn't have to practice in order to remain in unison. They already had it down pat.

The next morning, George was awakened by a sudden commotion. He went to the horse pen and found that not only had his favorite mare returned, but she had returned with five additional wild horses. George blinked at the full pen for a few minutes before going back into the house and making himself a nice cup of tea.

That afternoon the villagers returned but this time they all sang his praises, "George, George! You now have six horses. You are indeed a rich man! Good fortune shines upon you! Clearly this situation could be classified as the opposite of jacked!" George simply said:

"I don't know. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't."

George went back into the house. Sipping his tea he thought, "I wonder if those villagers realize just how creepy they sound when they talk all unison-y like that? I mean you'd think they could hear themselves when they do it." Thinking about it sent a shiver through him.

At that exact moment, the villagers were rehearsing the different ways they could sing, "George the re-tard" as they walked back to the village.

The next morning George asked his son, Jeff to try to tame one of the wild horses. In the attempt, Jeff fell off the horse, breaking his leg. No sooner had George helped Jeff into the house when the villagers appeared at his farm. Startled, George thought to himself, How the hell did they get here so fast? "Goodness George! Clearly even you can see that your son, breaking his leg, is jacked up! There's no other way to put it, George. It's just jacked up!" George started but before he could even get the words out of his mouth the villagers interrupted, "We know, we know. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't!" George blinked at them,

"Yes… But it's just creepy when you guys say it."

The villagers left but this time they didn't say a word. They had concluded that George was too much of a re-tard to even bother calling him a re-tard.

The next day an envoy from the king came to the village, conscripting all able-bodied men to fight in a far off war. All except for Jeff. His broken leg meant he was neither able nor bodied. Sadly though, none of the men who went to war were ever heard from again. The next season the villagers came to George's farm extolling his good fortune since his son had been spared from the war.

George didn't say a word.

He simply went into his house and sipped his tea.

Yesterday was just like that for me. Apparently what I had thought was the worst day of my career, was actually the best day ever!

It turns out I was just looking at it the wrong way.

There's that and I should prolly start drinking more tea.

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