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  1. #181
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    OLD MONEY

    Visitor: Good morning.

    Cashier: Good morning.

    Visitor: I have a hundred in old tenners here and Iíd like to exchange them for the new notes.

    Cashier: Oh, you would, would you? Well, this should have been done by Monday and itís Wednesday now. Why have you brought them in so late?

    Visitor: I know I should have done this earlier, but the money belongs to my wife and sheís only just noticed that itís out of date.

    Cashier: Has she now? Itís a pity she didnít spot that earlier.

    Visitor: Yes it is, but as it happens I phoned your manager and was told that itís all right for you to swap the cash now.

    Cashier: This is very irregular but Iíll oblige you without consulting my boss. Anyway, why hasnít your wife come in herself?

    Visitor: Because she isnít well enough.

    Cashier: Whatís wrong with her?

    Visitor: She has arthritis, but I donít see what that has to do with you.

    Cashier: It wouldnít do you any harm to humour me. How long has she had this problem?

    Visitor: A couple of years.

    Cashier: Are you looking after her properly?

    Visitor: Of course I am. Are you satisfied now?

    Cashier: Not quite. How long have you been married?

    Visitor: Forty-two years.

    Cashier: Ah, I thought as much.

    Visitor: What do mean by that?

    Cashier: Itís simple enough. Forty-two is six times seven. Thatís the seven-year itch, sixth time around. Youíve probably been looking elsewhere and neglecting the poor woman, so this ailment is an outward manifestation of her inner pain.

    Visitor: Iím so sorry to hear that. As a matter of fact we havenít been getting on too well recently.

    Cashier: There, you see. If youíd been treating the lady properly, she wouldnít have landed you with this old money problem. What sheís really doing is crying for your attention. Itís high time for you to show that you really care.

    Visitor: For a person who seems to be less than half my age, you appear to know a lot about these matters.

    Cashier: Age doesnít have much to do with it. Iím a married woman and I do know plenty about suffering.

    Visitor: You appear to conflate wedlock with misery. I donít see why.

    Cashier: No, you wouldnít. However, I canít spend all day discussing your affairs.

    Visitor: Pardon me, madam, but you started this. I came here on a simple errand and you sailed into me in this unwarranted way.

    Cashier: Iíve finished now.

    Visitor: What a relief. How about the shiny new banknotes?

    Cashier: Oh, yes. One hundred in tens. Here you are. And make sure you spend some of it on that poor woman.

    Visitor: You seem to have forgotten that itís her money.

    Cashier: Donít quibble. Just buy her something nice. She wonít mind whose cash it is. Now pull yourself together and start giving her the affection she needs.

    Visitor: Iíll see what I can do. Goodbye and thanks for the advice.

    Cashier: Youíre welcome. Have a nice day.

    * * *

    [CENTER][B][I][SIZE=3][FONT=times new roman]Even though the darkest clouds are in the sky,
    You mustnít sigh and you mustnít cry.
    Spread a little happiness, as you go by.

    [/FONT][/SIZE][/I][/B][B][I][FONT=Times New Roman]O:)[/FONT][/I][/B]
    [SIZE=2]
    [/SIZE]
    [/CENTER]

  2. #182
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    The item below is a letter just received at our office

    SAVIOUR


    To the editor of Madazine.

    Dear Mr Rider-Hawes,

    This is a note to let you know that I have discovered a way of saving the human race. No doubt you will wish to know how this came about. It happened three days ago, when I got talking with a man in a pub, where we shared a table and had a few drinks together.

    Our conversation took an extraordinary turn when I asked the man what he did for a living. He replied that what he called his people did nothing in the conventional sense. As he appeared to be fairly young, able-bodied and mentally quite sharp, I asked him if he would be so good as to tell me what he meant by his people and how they got by in our world.

    My companionís response astounded me and I suppose it will have the same effect on you. He said that he was a representative of an alien race from a planet in a distant galaxy, that these creatures could change form to suit any surroundings and that those on the Earth had assumed human form. When I asked how many of them were among us, he replied there were many thousands of both genders, distributed everywhere, roughly in line with each countryís percentage of our worldís total population.

    In response to my request to know what his kind wanted here, he further astonished me by saying that they intended to take over after the human race had, as he put it, vanished. I pressed him for details as to how our disappearance would occur and he replied that he and his complanetoids (I invented that word) had plenty of time to observe us destroying ourselves, as he seemed to think we would in due course. Should we not do so in what he and his fellow beings considered a reasonable length of time, they knew how to exterminate us quickly and easily.

    I noticed that although we had been drinking for quite a while, the fellow was totally sober. Then I realised that it was because he had been imbibing only fruit juice. At that point, I had the inspiration that will rescue us from extinction. I asked him if he would allow me to buy us a round, suggesting that he might care to try beer or possibly something stronger. His gave himself away at that point. With a look of horror he answered that he and all of his like were intolerant of alcohol and that the slightest drop of it was fatal to any of them.

    I bided my time until my interlocutor excused himself to go to the toilet. When he did so, I hurried over to the bar, bought a shot of vodka and poured it into his half-full glass of orangeade. On his return, he took a sip of it and within seconds, he slumped back in his chair, eyes glazed and breathing stertorous. After a further two minutes, his body went into a spasm, then he gave a short gasp and appeared to expire. At that point I left. Confirmation that he had perished on the spot came to me in the form of a report in our local newspaper the following day.

    You will surely grasp what is necessary for our salvation. All we need to do is ply everyone we meet with any sort of drink, provided it contains alcohol. That way we shall dispose of these interlopers before they do the same to us. Naturally I realise that we might in the process do some damage to human teetotallers, but as ever one cannot make an omelette without breaking eggs. You may thank me if you wish.

    Yours sincerely,

    Horatio J. J. Pumps-Ventricle

    Editorís note. Pumps Ventricle, eh? Seems to come from the heart. (I hope you donít have to look that one up, Pumpers.) We shall see how the wider public reacts to your message but everyone in this office is grateful for this pointer to our deliverance and you may be sure that we shall do our bit. We can hardly wait to get out there and indulge in all the booze-ups we shall arrange, hoping that in the process we shall get rid of a few of the intruders you mention.

    * * *

    [CENTER][B][I][SIZE=3][FONT=times new roman]Even though the darkest clouds are in the sky,
    You mustnít sigh and you mustnít cry.
    Spread a little happiness, as you go by.

    [/FONT][/SIZE][/I][/B][B][I][FONT=Times New Roman]O:)[/FONT][/I][/B]
    [SIZE=2]
    [/SIZE]
    [/CENTER]

  3. #183
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    AN EVENING OUT

    A young married couple, Nicola and Thomas, hired a taxi for a whole evening. They had in mind to first call at a public house for a drink or two, from there to go on to a restaurant and then to finish their outing by taking a ride in an open carriage in the town park. The agreed fare would be £100.00. An excerpt from the dialogue that took place in the cab is given below:

    Thomas: Right, weíll start with a drop of good cheer. Please take us to the Hussar, driver.

    Cabbie: I wouldnít go there if I were you, sir.

    Thomas: Oh, may I ask why you say that?

    Cabbie: Itís snooty, the sort of place where they make you feel uncomfortable when they think you are not their type. Iím sure you know what I mean. The prices are very high and the drinks are nothing to write home about. Iíll take you there if you insist, but youíd be better of at the Nagís Head.

    Nicola: I donít fancy that. Iíve heard itís a spit and sawdust establishment and I hope we donít strike you as potential patrons of such a place.

    Cabbie: I grant you itís a bit rough but you can get tanked up there for half what youíd pay at the Hussar, the booze is better and so is the company.

    Thomas: Look, this is none of your business. Just do as we ask. When weíre ready to move on, weíll have dinner at the Palace in Regent Road.

    Cabbie: I wouldnít recommend that.

    Thomas: I donít care what youíd recommend but as a matter interest, what have you got against our choice?

    Cabbie: Just about everything. It costs a packet to eat there and itís unhygienic.

    Nicola: In what way?

    Cabbie: Well, for one thing the cooks and waiters think theyíre Godís gift to the diners. Condescending is the word, madam. Thereís every chance somebody on the staff will take a dislike to you for no good reason and if that happens, you can bet that one of the chefs will be doing something nasty to your food.

    Nicola: Oh, dear. Anything else?

    Cabbie: You bet. One of their favourite tricks is to get an empty bottle of top-class wine, fill it with the cheapest plonk they can get, recork it and present it as the real McCoy. A friend of mine knows a lot about these things and they offered him what they said was a Gevrey-Chambertin, Premier Cru. He swears what he got was Beaujolais Nouveau.

    Thomas: Astonishing. If thatís true, how do they get away with it?

    Cabbie: Itís a question of percentages, sir. They know that on average, only one party in five complains. The others are either too shy to make a fuss, or theyíve had a bevvy or two before they dine, so they donít realise theyíre being swindled. That way the restaurant foists them off with rubbish eighty percent of the time. Makes sense from their point of view.

    Nicola: Appalling, but weíve booked.

    Cabbie: Well, itís your money but I think you should try Tommyís Grill & Griddle.

    Thomas: Yes, weíll do that. After the meal weíd like you to take us to the park and wait while we have a spin in one of those carriages.

    Cabbie: Thatís something else I wouldnít do if I were you.

    Thomas: This is ridiculous. Whatís wrong with our plan?

    Cabbie: I suppose youíll be wanting to do that around nine oíclock, right?

    Thomas: Yes. So what?

    Cabbie: The place is full of muggers and suchlike at that time. You could wind up with somebody jumping out of the bushes and telling you to stand and deliver. Those types are just like eighteenth-century highwaymen.

    Thomas: This is ridiculous. No doubt with your encyclopedic knowledge you have an alternative suggestion.

    Cabbie: Yes I do. Your best bet is to go to the News Theatre in the railway station. Itís small, sort of intimate and the seats are luxurious. You get an hour and a quarter of great entertainment Ė a newsreel, a couple of good travel shorts and a few hilarious cartoons. In my view, a much better way to pass your time than what you have in mind.


    Later. The cab has taken Nicola and Thomas home.

    Thomas: Well, thank you driver.

    Cabbie: The nameís John, sir.

    Thomas: Right, John. Thank you for steering us to a pleasant evening. Iím sorry I doubted you.

    Nicola: That goes for me too. We met some very nice people at the Nagís Head, had a super meal at Tommyís place and a really lovely time at the theatre. I enjoyed every minute of our outing.

    Thomas: So did I. Look, hereís the payment we agreed on and another twenty for your guidance.

    Cabbie: No need for that, sir. The advice comes free. Now just to see you top off your night out, take this.

    Thomas: What is it?

    Cabbie: A bottle of single malt, with my compliments. After all, Christmas is coming.

    Nicola: What do you mean? Itís the twenty-fourth of September.

    Cabbie: I know that, but you canít deny what I said about Christmas. It comes every year. Good night.

    * * *
    [CENTER][B][I][SIZE=3][FONT=times new roman]Even though the darkest clouds are in the sky,
    You mustnít sigh and you mustnít cry.
    Spread a little happiness, as you go by.

    [/FONT][/SIZE][/I][/B][B][I][FONT=Times New Roman]O:)[/FONT][/I][/B]
    [SIZE=2]
    [/SIZE]
    [/CENTER]

  4. #184
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    WORKLESSNESS

    The item below is a letter we have just received, which I think offers an interesting slant on a topic that seems to be on many minds at present. Editor

    Dear Madazine,

    It occurs to me that you may be willing to publish details of an idea I have been playing with for a while. It started when I conflated two pieces of information I gleaned from listening to my radio. Perhaps there is no good reason why I should have fused the two, but I did so and came up with a notion that I think may give us all a pointer to the future.

    The first item was a report that a man in France had sued his employer Ė a public body Ė for what he claimed was distress caused to him because his job gave him a total sinecure. In order to be paid, he was required to be at his workplace each workday, though he had no duties, to do nothing but pass the time until leaving for home. His employer was aware of this and quite happy about it.

    The second item arose during a programme about the future of employment in general. An expert in this field stated that the advance of technology would soon put millions of people all over the world out of work. Even those now doing professional and senior executive jobs would be replaced by machines.

    My reaction is that it is a pity this did not come along earlier. I am not suggesting that the people affected should be put onto scrap heaps, but rather that they should continue to be paid, in most cases as before but perhaps from different paymasters, say new national bodies.

    What I envisage is that the displaced workers should be required to turn up for work somewhere, much like the Frenchman mentioned above, and occupy themselves according to their inclinations and abilities, on condition that their labours are directed to the good of society as a whole. They should not be allowed to fool around with pointless games and similar pastimes, regardless of how they might try to rationalise such activities.

    My notion here is that if a number of people are placed in a given spot where they must stay for a working day of average length, most of them are likely to cooperate and exchange ideas that benefit them and others. I suppose one could liken this to the atmosphere of universities. Perhaps we might even call these places multiversities. There would of course need to be some kind of supervision, the nature of which I have not yet thought through. Spice could be added by rewards for anything deemed socially useful, to be determined by judging panels.

    In putting forward this proposal I am mindful of my own long career in the mills of industry and commerce. I donít believe that my country derived much benefit from my efforts, whereas had I been set free to occupy myself as I wished, I like to think the outcome would have been better for my contemporaries and for future generations.

    When I took the opportunity to retire somewhat earlier than expected, my boss, the companyís chief executive, asked me what I intended to do with my time. My reply was that I wanted to indulge my long-held desire to produce works of fiction. I was not too pleased when he retorted that most of my work for the previous ten years had comprised writing reports for him and his fellow directors, and that the nature of those papers was such that my proposed future efforts would not represent much of a change. The cheek of it! But never mind my disillusionment after that decade of toil, or the fact that I have not yet done what I had in mind. Let me just hope that you will put my scheme before your readers and I would like to hear their reactions.

    Yours sincerely,
    Tobias Oxminder

    * * *

    [CENTER][B][I][SIZE=3][FONT=times new roman]Even though the darkest clouds are in the sky,
    You mustnít sigh and you mustnít cry.
    Spread a little happiness, as you go by.

    [/FONT][/SIZE][/I][/B][B][I][FONT=Times New Roman]O:)[/FONT][/I][/B]
    [SIZE=2]
    [/SIZE]
    [/CENTER]

  5. #185
    Member Aquarius's Avatar
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    Be A Miracle Worker Ė Part Nineteen

    The Miracle




    After having reached his eighty-third birthday on 8th January 2020, when the Sun was in Capricorn, my husband of fifty-six years and best friend of sixty-nine years departed from the earthly school of life on Saturday, 25th January 2020 in the morning. Will you believe me when I tell you that I am glad about it? The 8 is ruled by Saturn, the planetary ruler of Capricorn, and that made my husband a double Capricorn and that is the hallmark of a very old and experienced soul. In keeping with his Saturnian style, he left our world behind on a Saturday, the day ruled by guess who? Saturn!

    Knowing that, if he managed to get things right towards the end of his present lifetime by patiently enduring whatever came his way, he would be released from the compulsion of having to take part in further earthly lessons. And so he refused chemotherapy and bravely battled with cancer of the waterworks until the state of his health got so bad that he had to be taken to our local hospital less than a fortnight ago. In the morning of the above mentioned date, one of the nurses saw him contentedly sipping his cup of tea. When she looked again less than ten minutes later, he was leaning back and the colour of his face had changed. Very quietly he had just slipped away.

    Together we have been working on a miracle for quite a while and only the day before he departed from our world I told him that the miracle could happen quite suddenly. Little did I know that it did and how it would manifest itself in the end and that in Godís time and Godís way Ė not ours. My thanks to God and the Angels for this blessing. Itís a great relief to know him safe and sound, alive and well, starting to enjoy the greater freedom of the spirit realm. All along I have never given up hope that one of these days a miracle would happen for him and that he would then be writing the last chapter of this part of my jottings.

    Through his suffering his karmic debts must have been paid and the balance of his spiritual bankbook restored. The slate was wiped clean through clearing out, down to the last one, the false beliefs, prejudices and superstitions that were stored in his soul memories. With this the conditions were right and nothing stood in the way of a miracle, so that it really could come about quite suddenly. Knowing where he was going and what awaited him, made it easy for him to let go without a struggle when the Angel of Death took his spirit/soul by the hand and said: ĎYouíve suffered long and hard enough, old boy, come along with me! Iíll take you home.í

    One part of me cannot help feeling guilty because sadness when someone passes into the world of light is the traditional thing of the past. Yet, the other much stronger spiritual side of me just feels happy and relieved that he no longer has to suffer. Thatís why God and the Angels have decided in their infinite wisdom to write this last chapter of ĎBe A Miracle Workerí through me, the same as all other parts of my writings always have done and to this day are coming into being. As this outcome is much more beautiful, good and right than any other one could possibly have been at age eighty-three, I am glad to oblige.

    Letís steal away, letís steal away,
    No reason left for staying.
    For me and you
    Letís start a-new
    And quietly steal away.

    Letís leave behind the city streets,
    The gloom and desolation,
    Of earthly life.
    The rain, the cold,
    Growing older and older
    Thatís too tough a station
    For you and me.

    The Fureys
    Edited by Aquarius

    I hope that one of these days the same kind of miracle is going to happen for me and that I too will be allowed to quietly slip away. And itís not a goodbye or farewell we are saying to each other now, my Beloved, merely Ďau revoirí and Ďauf Wiedersehení in the world of light. This is humankindís true home from which we emerge at the beginning of every new lifetime and return to when it ends, at whatever earthly age this may come about. Itís no big deal really and nothing to be afraid of. And because in spirit we are one, until then you will be with me in any case and never be more than a thought away. What more could anyone wish for?

    For me itís a comforting thought that everything in the whole of Creation is wheels within wheels and cycles within cycles, and that this also applies to our earthly existence. On the whole human lives unfold like the seasons of the world around us, never stopping or even resting, merely slowing down towards the end. In both cases spring, summer, autumn and winter quite reliably are followed by another springtime that brings a renewal, regeneration and rebirth. In the case of human beings this happens in the world of light, our true home. There we rest and recuperate from the stresses and strains of earthly life until we are ready to either apply for another earthly lifetime or being allowed to move on to exploring the next higher level of the spirit realm that is ready and waiting for us.

    The outcome depends on which degree someoneís development has reached. But whatever happens, without interruption every one of us at all times is taking part in the flow of the great river of life and evolution. All of us are constantly proceeding forwards and upwards, each on their own individual spiral as well as that of humankind and the whole of Creation.


    From ĎBe A Miracle Workerí


    * * *

    P.S. Dear Friends. Before his departure into the spirit realm the Courtjester wrote several more Madazine items. In loving memory of him and appreciation of his contribution to the Writing Forums, from time to time I hope to share another one of them with you, his cherished readers, until the last article has gone.

    With love and light,
    Aquarius

    * * *


    Last edited by Aquarius; February 15th, 2020 at 04:13 PM.
    Who Is Blind?
    The one who is unable to perceive another world.
    Who is dumb?
    The one who cannot speak a kind and loving word at the right moment.
    Who is poor?
    The one who is plagued by too many desires.
    Who is rich?
    The one whose heart is contented.

    Anon.


  6. #186
    Member Aquarius's Avatar
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    To The One I Love And Who Loves Me



    Now that I have departed from the earthly plane,
    Release me and let me go.
    You and I, we still have many things to see and do,
    So do not tie yourself to me with regrets and tears.
    I gave you my love and you will never guess
    How much you brought to me in happiness.
    I thank you for the love you have shown,
    But now itís time for each to travel on alone.

    So, weep a while, if grieve you must.
    Though not for me, only for yourself and
    For the hole my passing has created in your life.
    But then let your grief be comforted by trust
    And the knowledge that
    Itís only for a while that part we must.
    Bless the memories you carry in your heart.
    It knows that no love is ever lost,
    That life is eternal and goes on and on,
    Not just for you and me, but everybody.

    You and I now are closer than we have ever been
    And Iíll never be further from you than a thought.
    So whenever you need me, call and Iíll be near.
    Even though you can now neither see nor touch me,
    Know that I have never gone from you.
    And when you listen to your heart,
    Youíll feel my love there soft and clear.

    And then, one fine day,
    When you are coming this way,
    Youíll find me waiting to greet you
    And with a smile
    I shall welcome you home.

    Fr. Pat Lennon
    Edited by Aquarius
    Who Is Blind?
    The one who is unable to perceive another world.
    Who is dumb?
    The one who cannot speak a kind and loving word at the right moment.
    Who is poor?
    The one who is plagued by too many desires.
    Who is rich?
    The one whose heart is contented.

    Anon.


  7. #187
    Member Aquarius's Avatar
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    Au Revoir Courtjester

    Life and water.
    Into the ocean of life drops a milestone.
    The ripples reach out and as they intersect
    with other ripples from other milestones,
    create a complex weave of dancing refractions.

    In my life I have had many milestones. Writing Forums is a fertile garden for them. Of these, I wish to tell of Courtjester. While, sadly, his corporeal body is no longer here, his strength and skill and humanity remain as simple words on this screen, even though they are an eternal part of him. For us he is leaving behind his legacy of strength and determination. They are immortal and are guiding those who find them and understand their messages. He, like you and me, was and will always be, a writer.

    As he partook of the dance of life and wrote about it, made us richer. Now the wind blown leaf of his spirit and soul are resting, but I know he will soon be writing up a storm of a different kind in a new place. I salute his generous spirit and soul. See you on the other side of the veil of consciousness that separates our world from yours.

    No writer, like no artist, ever rests in peace. There is always a story to be told. Write on.

    Bazz cargo

    * * *

    I could not have expressed it as well as you did and thanks a million for that, dear Friend. I sense the Courtjester looking over my shoulder, reading your kind and loving words, smiling, nodding in agreement and thanking you. God bless you, your loved ones and everybody at the Writing Forums, writers and readers alike.

    With love and light,
    Aquarius

    * * *
    Who Is Blind?
    The one who is unable to perceive another world.
    Who is dumb?
    The one who cannot speak a kind and loving word at the right moment.
    Who is poor?
    The one who is plagued by too many desires.
    Who is rich?
    The one whose heart is contented.

    Anon.


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