Mister President, what do you have in your hand?

What do I have in my hand? Come on, you guys. Give it a guess. You press boys think you're pretty smart most of the time. Guess.

No, it's not a Hershey's kiss. Nope. Not a peanut M&M, either. Although that's a heck of a good guess. Stretch. Not a food substance of any kind.

Joe Lieberman's balls? Quit kiddin around guys, that was downright mean. Pretty funny though.

That's enough guessing. It's a parable. I got me a parable in my hand. Passed down to me from my daddy, who got it from his daddy, who made it up one winter's day in Foggy Bottom.

Once upon a time there was a wise old Texan and a young whippersnapper. That boy wanted to outsmart the old man more than just about anything. He lived for it. He was a bad kid, real bad, and he was just determined to make the good-hearted Texas gentleman look like an old fool. That's one kid that could've benefited from a good ass whippin.

Anyway, one day the kid goes out and captures a little baby bird, and he cups the bird in his hand, cause he's up to no good. Then he walks up to Birch Street in Austin, which is where the old Texan hangs out around the convenience store, helping widows with their groceries and gossiping with all the other old Texans.

Did I mention that the old guy's name was Chester, just like the guy on 'Gunsmoke'? Or was that Festus... I get em confused.

So anyway, the kid pops up and shouts 'Hey old man, guess what I got in my hand'. And Chester, he knows right away that it's a bird, cause it's sticking out all over the place, boys not only mean, he's a spastic, so he tell's the boy 'It's a dang bird, kid. Now get your delinquent ass out of here and go to school'. And he spits some chaw at the kid, which just makes the kid madder than the dickens.

So the kid thinks that now he's gonna trap the old guy and prove him wrong for once and all. So he says, 'Well, you got that right you old fart, now let's see if you can tell me whether it's dead or alive'.

What he's thinking, see, is if old Chester says dead, he can open his hand, and let the bird fly away, and then laugh at the old guy. And if Chester says the bird's alive, the kid can crush the life out of it and throw it at the old man. Kinda makes you sick to your stomach, doesn't it?

But the wise old Texan knows what the boy's thinking, so he looks him up and down and says "What kind of moron are you kid? I might be old, but I'm still not deaf. I can hear the damn bird squawking in your hands. Now you let go of that critter this minute or I'm gonna tan your hide".

Now the moral of this story is that the people of Iraq are trying to get their ducks in order and be a proud independent people. And they shouldn't be intimidated by some smartass kid who wants to crush their bird, because the bird represents freedom, and freedom will prevail.

Next question?


2005, Mark Hoback