We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
It was two days before Chanukah and Mr. Feldman, quite downcast, was trudging home. "Where will I get money to buy presents for the holiday?" he asked himself sadly, thinking of his wife and children. On the way, he passed a church, in front of which was a sign: Five Hundred Dollars Cash To Anyone Who Joins This Church Today!
Here was the solution to Feldman's problem! He went in, joined, and was given the five hundred dollars as the sign promised. That evening, at supper, he told his family how he had come by his sudden wealth. "And here's the money," he announced grandly, waving the money before them.
"Darling," said his wife, "you remember that coat you promised me three years ago? Well it's on sale at Macy's."
"How much is it?"
"Only a two hundred and fifty dollars, and it's worth at least three hundred and fifty."
Feldman peeled off five fifties and gave them to her. The son spoke up. "Pop, for a long time I've been saving up to buy one of those cool mountain bikes. I already have most of the money, but I need a little more."
"How much more?"
"One hundred and fifty dollars."
Feldman handed over the money.
"Daddy," said his teen age daughter, "next week our school is having the most important dance of the whole year. If I don't have a new dress,
I'll simply die."
"Don't die Sweetheart. How much is the dress?"
"Only a hundred dollars, Daddy dear."
Feldman handed over the remaining twenty five dollars, leaned back and grinned. "It never fails," he announced. "The minute we Gentiles have a little money, you Jews take it away from us!"
A self-absorbed child takes from others, as do adults who havenít matured.† Instead, all our holy days are common gifts to be shared for their giving of appreciation for the blessings that enrich our lives and society. †