-1) Two mourners attended the funeral of a good man. One said wistfully to the other, “It is a shame he had to die, he was a good man.”

The other looked strangely at the one and replied, “This good man has something in common with bad men. Something important, in fact.”

The one mourner turned, shocked by what they were hearing, and asked, “What would that be, exactly?”

The other said, “He had to die.”

The one turned away. After a moment, they said, “Yes, that is true.”

0) A chronic runner said, “Modern life is absolutely paralytic.”

+1) A dark-skinned person said, “I’m not one to complain, but sometimes I just get so fed up with driving. Traffic lights are always turning red when I approach them. There are always so many other people on the road in front of me, no matter what time of day it is. They constantly cut me off, refuse to merge lanes or give right of way, as if they don’t even realize I’m there. It’s so hard to stay patient about it, especially because I’m always late getting where I need to go – doesn’t matter how early I get going.”

A fair-skinned person said, “Man, that sounds awful! When I’m driving, things are very different. I rarely have to wait at traffic lights, and when I do, it’s never a long wait. There are almost never any other cars cluttering the road ahead of me, day or night. No one ever really cuts me off or endangers me through some other carelessness – they always take note of my presence. And I am pretty much always on time, even if I’m running late. It’s odd that are experiences are so different.”

“Yes, I know,” the dark-skinned person replied with some bitterness. “I know very well how different it is for you because I am usually driving behind you.”

“Are you?” said the fair-skinned person with some surprise. “I’m sorry, I had no idea.”

The two of them became tense with silence.

Then the fair-skinned person ventured to say, “Well, we should carpool sometime.”

The dark-skinned person nodded and said, “Yes, we should.”

1) A gentle person said, “Now listen, because this is what makes me think that kindness is not as uncommon in this world as some people seem to believe.

“I was walking through a park. As I walked, my footsteps frightened a nearby robin, and it took flight. Other passersby noticed the bird as it flew away, and therefore they also noticed me. But if my steps had been lighter, and if my berth had been wider, and if the bird had not been scared off, would anyone have noticed?”

1ce more from the top.01) A veteran musician was asked, “What is the most beautiful sound you have ever heard?” With a fond smile, they answered, “The sound of a new and unfamiliar song being practiced.”

1ce more from the top.02) A veteran musician was asked, “And the most terrible sound you have ever heard?” With patient annoyance, they answered, “The sound of a new and unfamiliar song being practiced.”

1 hit wonder) A heretic said, “Now, Jesus was probably the most sexually attractive zombie who ever lived, but from an emotional standpoint, very unappealing. Had a bit of a savior complex, if you ask me. The whole ‘He died for your sins’ thing? Seems like he really needed to be needed, you know? ‘Oh, what a martyr I am, so self-sacrificing! I shall love you truly, even if you never return my love!’ He might have had more success writing popular love songs.”

1-2-3) An observer said, “When I watch a performer at work, I often find myself marveling at how easily they weave their art. Sometimes, I even start to believe that I could excel at it myself. In those moments, I become aware that I am in the presence of a rare expert, one who obscures their years of labored practice behind the guise of effortless talent. Although I am unable to see those years, I cannot help but envision them; it is then that I truly stand in awe.”

2) An excerpt from a conversation between two feminists:

“Why do you think some people choose not to be feminists?”

“Because they think they know what feminism is.”

“So that’s the only reason, you reckon?”

“Well, it’s either that, or because it’s way easier not to be a feminist. Takes a lot less courage. So they’re either a bunch of idiots, or a bunch of pussies. Could be both, I guess.”

“You ever think they might be Right, though?”

“Sure, if being Right means being a stupid pussy.”

3) A reductionist said, “Williams said, ‘so much depends / upon / a red wheel / barrow / glazed with rain / water / beside the white / chickens’. I always felt he could have stopped after the first three words. Less is more, after all. As in, he probably should have spent less time looking out the window and more time tending to the comatose child in the bed behind him.”

4 more years) A comically underqualified fascist said, “Another war would really help me out, but a plague isn’t bad, either, I can make that work.”

5 paragraph) The student complained, “I’m so bored!”

The teacher smiled and said, “They say that boredom is the sign of a busy intellect. Perhaps a more advanced assignment would keep your interest.”

The student looked up and said, “What? Sorry, I wasn’t listening.”

The teacher frowned and said, “An essay, then.”

8 hours) A dreamer said, “Occasionally, I have the experience of dreaming in another language – Spanish, perhaps, or music. I tell you, beyond the encouraging smile of an attractive stranger or the thunderous applause of an adoring crowd, nothing in this world can make me quite so overconfident.”

10 and counting) A recovering Christian said, “I’ve been sober ten years now, but Johnny Cash hasn’t made it easy, goddammit.”

12 to 15) A story from a person who was apparently older than they appeared:

“A sixty-four-year-old woman said to me, ‘You look about twelve.’ So I laughed and said, ‘Geez, I hope I don’t look twelve.’ And she squinted at me and said, ‘Well, maybe about fifteen.’ And it got me wondering, do most people look twelve to fifteen when you’re sixty-four? I mean, most people looked sixty-four when I was twelve to fifteen, so I guess it would work the other way, too.”

19) A hopeful person said, “Maybe they’ll use the toilet paper to make face masks and wash their hands.”

20.12 Exodus) A mythologist said, “Parents usually know what’s best for their children.”

24) A frightened person said, “It’s my God-given right to own firearms. Guns are a symbol of freedom in this country. Like if I wanted to go murder a few dozen schoolchildren, I could either shoot them one at a time with my pistol, or I could grab my assault rifle and mow them all down at once. And I should be free to make that choice. When Jesus and Jack Bauer from TV’s 24 went up on Mount Olympus to get the Ten Constitutions from God, I’m pretty sure guns was on there.”

24/7) An enthusiast said, “Porn is cocaine that never runs out.”

50/50) A concerned citizen said, “Well, there are a lot of problems, to be sure, but I have to say the Department of Inequity is doing a fine job, indeed.”

69) A rigid person said, “Some days, I am overcome by a heavy peace – when my bones weigh warm in my skin, and my breath comes easy, and I am deeply relieved. Those are the days when I know I have worked long and hard.” He then threw away his wad of tissues and stretched blissfully, very pleased with himself.”

2010) The letter in the mail from Nancy Pelosi said, “House Democrats will Never Back Down.” Included with the letter was a commemorative photograph of Former president of the united states Barack Obama NeverBackDowning the affordable care Act into law.

3000 BC) A relic said, “To study history is to study the stories of people who were never really asked for their opinions, as told by the people who neglected to do the asking. Of course, that’s all in the past, we’ve come so far nowadays.”

now o’clock.01) An anxious and depressed person said, “I have discovered time travel; it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.”

now o’clock.02) Someone said, rather seriously, “Humor is a miraculous thing because of its unmatched capacity for shutting the door on the rest of everything. A quip or a clever rhyme bookends itself, creating a brief, self-contained, elegant display of pleasure that defies intrusion by mundane worries and hardships from elsewhere. In its purest form, it is a biologically advisable escape into the present moment, as well as a desperately needed reaffirming of the joy to be found there.”