A little incident, more or less as it happened at work a couple of years ago: (I work for a Christian hotline)

I am in my boss’s office, and he is wondering how to reward me for the score on my evaluation. He looks at me. Would you like a company windbreaker?

Pause….Well….I probably wouldn’t wear it. Thanks, anyway.

I thought you wouldn’t. That’s what I just told Peter. Would you like one for John?

Pause….He already has one. You gave him one on Volunteer Appreciation Night. Thanks!

Hmmmm….Well, what about an extra break on the day of your choice? And a Kitkat chocolate bar?

Perfect! Great! Thanks. And may I just have one minute to ask you about something?

Sure….Oh, wait a minute, though….In walks Patricia, another employee, also here a few minutes before her shift. She is in her seventies, was brought up in an orphanage, and became a Christian at some point during her adult years. She is our company  “character”. We all love her.

Hey, Rick, can you do me a favor?

Sure, Patricia.

I want to know if my son is alive.


I want to know if my son is alive. Someone told me I should look in the obituaries.

What do you mean, Patricia?

The obituaries. Someone told me if I find an obituary then I will know he is dead.

Me, helpfully…. Ordinarily that is true, but can’t you just ask him whether he is dead?

Oh, I haven’t heard from him in years. The police in Florida have looked for him and can’t find him, either. I would just really like to know if I’ll ever see him again. But if I don’t, I know I’ll see him in Heaven.

Well, how will I go about looking? What is his name? Ok…No, nothing there…What else can I type in? …Nope, nothing there either….I don’t think I can help you, Patricia.

OK, Honey. Thanks for trying. See you later.

Rick: Now, what did you want, Barbara?