Wednesday, 21 December 2011

#43: Christmas Time (Is Here Again)

As a grad student living in Toronto, you shouldn't be surprised to know that I don't have a great deal of deposable income (let alone income!) so despite my overwhelming generosity and my desire to buy all you fine folks gifts and things for the Holiday season, I've decided to give you something even better. Something that cannot be bought or sold, or packaged or wrapped, or break or expire; but rather something that comes from the heart (figuratively) and can be shared again and again and again and will (hopefully) bring a smile to your face.
This year my gift to you is a joke!

I'll admit that it's not the greatest joke of all time and some might even say it's mediocre at best. But so am I and that's why I like it.

You may also be surprised to hear that this particular joke is NOT about running. Haha Yup, I can't recall (m)any running jokes other than the ones that end with the line: "That's what she said!" Don't get it?! Here is a conversation not atypical amongst runners.

Runner 1: You're going too fast I can't keep up.
Runner 2: Just concentrate and stay focused.
Runner 1: No really, my entire lower body is numb. My thighs are burning.
Runner 2: It's only been 4 minutes. Just a few more to go.
Runner 1: It's too long. It hurts. I think I'm going to seize up and collapse.
Runner 2: Suck it up princess, it's nearly over.
Runner 1: I shouldn't have eaten that ice cream an hour ago.
Runner 2: Okay that's it. You can stop now. Are you crying?!

See what I mean?

Getting back on topic. The joke. I realize that the delivery will not be as effective as if I gave it myself (or better yet, a gifted speaker), but I'm hoping that you'll appreciate the genius of the joke and will then spread it amongst your own family, friends and associates.

So without further adieu, here it is, my gift to you, the joke...

So a guy from Toronto is travelling to Vancouver for business. His Bay Street firm has asked him to finalize a big deal they've been working on and as a bonus for closing the deal, the firm is paying for him to stay in a nice fancy downtown hotel and then spend the weekend in Whistler with his wife.

He and his wife fly to Vancouver on Friday morning and check themselves into the hotel. While he is busy meeting with his clients and closing the deal, she spends the day shopping and seeing the city. The deal gets done early and so the couple spend the afternoon together, go to the theatre and then have a fine meal at an upscale restaurant before retiring for the evening (what happens then is not part of the joke!).

The next morning they wake early and take a rented car to Whistler. It's such a beautiful day that they decide to take a more scenic route through the countryside and avoid the traffic. They manage to find a lonely country road and spend time chatting while taking in the scenic views of farm, forest and mountainscape.
About half way through the trip whilst discussing nothing in particular, a large but otherwise ordinary pink pig darts out across the road in front of the car without warning. The husband slams on the brakes, but it's not quick enough and THUMP! The car slams into the passing porcine.

The wife lets out an alarming scream but everyone is okay as the husband brings the car to a stop along the side of the road. He calms down his wife before getting out of the car to take in the scene. He is rightly shaken by the event and his heart is still racing in his chest.

He glances a few metres back to where the large pig is laying motionless on the other side of the road. He walks toward it and as he gets closer he notices that it is still breathing shallowly. He stands directly over the beast and as he inspects it, he fails to notice any obvious evidence of what has just transpired. No blood, guts, scrapes or scars. It essentially seems as if the pig were simply sleeping silently.

Not knowing what to do next, the man reaches down to touch the fine hairs on the brutish beast when all of a sudden, without any notice, the pig immediately jumps to its feet and takes off across the field and into a nearby forest. The animal is gone as quickly as it came.
The man is now standing alone on the side of a deserted road and only then becomes fully aware of being located in rural British Columbia with no buildings, vehicles or people for many miles. He returns to the car where his wife is sitting silently and looking similarly stunned by what's happened in the past few minutes. The man checks the car and is astonished to see practically no evidence of the collision. No bumps, benders, dents or scratches of any kind. He's amazed.

The wife becomes increasingly impatient and asks that they keep moving. Without anything more to do, the man gets back in the car and they continue the drive to Whistler without incident. On the way, the man tries to makes sense of the situation and soon collects himself. They spend the rest of the day skiing on some of the finest snow the mountain has seen in several years and when the slopes close, have another delicious meal at a fine Italian restaurant before driving the 2 or so hours back to Vancouver. The wife sleeps peacefully the entire journey while the husband listens to easy rock on the radio.
The next morning they sleep in, order breakfast and watch the falling rain from the comfort of their hotel. Just before noon, they pack their things and prepare to check out before returning to the airport for the flight back to Toronto. In the lobby just as they prepare to depart, they notice two police officers who begin making their way towards them. The officers greets the couple before getting straight to it.
"Excuse me sir, sorry to bother you. Are you Scott Taylor?

"Yes, I am." The man replies. "Is there a problem?"

"I was wondering if I could ask you a few questions about your day yesterday."

Curious and also increasing nervous: "Okay, what is all this about?"

"Well Mr. Taylor, we have reason to believe that you were involved in a motor accident with an animal some time yesterday morning; is that correct?"

Perplexed by the officer's inquiry but with nothing to hide: "Yes, that's correct. How did you know that? We were driving to Whistler and the thing ran out in front of the car. We stopped. I went to check. It ran away. It got up and ran off. It seemed okay. Why? What's going on?"

"Well Mr. Taylor, it just so happens that in the province of British Columbia we have a number of laws pertaining to animal protection and welfare. The farmer of that pig that you happened to hit is very upset about all this and intends to press charges against you."

Shocked and confused by this, the man becomes increasingly agitated and speaks quickly: "Charges?! For what? Like I said, the animal ran away, it appeared to be fine. And there was no one in sight, no houses or farms for miles. What was I supposed to do?!"
Trying to appear empathetic and calm the man down: "It's really not a big deal sir, but we'd like for you to come with us down to the station to answer some questions for the record."

Now appearing flustered with an equally perplexed wife standing silently to the side, the man remembered that he had a flight to catch. "But my flight, it leaves in 2 hours, we really must be going, isn't there anything else..."

The officer interrupts: "I'm sorry sir, I really am. We just need to follow protocol. We'll have you on your way as soon as possible."

With no other options and still in a state of shock and surprise, the man has no choice but to agree to go with the officers. He asks his wife to hold tight for the time being. Not happy, but also not knowing what else to do, she reluctantly agrees.

The officers escort the man outside into the light rain to their patrol car parked nearby. They help him into the backseat and proceed to the police headquarters. The man is silent but his mind is racing. How long will this all take? What is going to happen to me? Will I miss my flight? When will I get back? What about work; should I call the firm? What is my wife supposed to do?

Suddenly, as the thoughts fly through his head, something occurs to him.

"Excuse me officers, I was just wondering about one thing. How did you know it was me that hit that pig yesterday? There was no one around for miles!"


"Well Mr. Taylor, that's just it. The pig. He squealed."

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