desperate for water, was
plodding through the Afghanistan desert when he saw something
far off in the distance. Hoping to find water, he walks toward
object, only to find a little old man sitting at a card table with
neckties laid out on it.
The Taliban asks, "My thirst is killing
me! Do you have water?"
The old man replies, "I have no water.
Would you like to buy a tie?
They are only $150. This one goes very nicely with your robes."
The Taliban shouts, "Idiot! I do not
an overpriced tie. I need water, you moron!"
"OK! OK!," says the old man, "it does
not matter that you do not want
to buy a tie. I will show you that you have not offended
me. If you
walk over that hill to the east
for about two miles, you will find a lovely restaurant. Go!
way! The restaurant has all the water you need!"
The Taliban staggers away toward the
hill and eventually disappears,
stumbling over the tops of the sand dunes.
Four hours later the Taliban, his
clothes in rags and his swollen
tongue hanging out of his sunburned lips, comes crawling back to where
the old man is sitting at his table.
The old man says, "I told you, about
two miles over that hill.
Could you not find the lovely restaurant?"
"I found it all right," rasps the
Taliban. "Your stupid brother won't
let me in without a tie!"
James Odle, Jr.