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WITandWISDOM(tm) - November 22, 2002
ISSN 1538-8794

~~~~~~~ THOUGHTS:

"There are people who, instead of listening to what is being said to them, are already listening to what they are going to say themselves." - Albert Guinon

Source: Net 153 Weekly, http://www.net153.com/


The Emperor's Seeds

An emperor in the Far East was growing old and knew it was time to choose His successor. Instead of choosing one of his assistants or his children, he decided something different. He called young people in the kingdom together one day.

He said, "It is time for me to step down and choose the next emperor. I have decided to choose one of you." The kids were shocked! But the emperor continued. "I am going to give each one of you a seed today, one very special seed. I want you to plant the seed, water it and come back here one year from today with what you have grown from this one seed. I will then judge the plants that you bring, and the one I choose will be the next emperor!"

One boy named Ling was there that day, and he, like the others, received a seed. He went home and excitedly told his mother the story. She helped him get a pot and planting soil, and he planted the seed and watered it carefully. Every day he would water it and watch to see if it had grown.

After about three weeks, some of the other youths began to talk about their seeds and the plants that were beginning to grow. Ling kept checking his seed, but nothing ever grew. Three weeks, 4 weeks, 5 weeks went by. Still nothing.

By now, others were talking about their plants but Ling didn't have a plant, and he felt like a failure. Six months went by; still nothing in Ling's pot.

He just knew he had killed his seed. Everyone else had trees and tall plants, but he had nothing. Ling didn't say anything to his friends, however. He just kept waiting for his seed to grow.

A year finally went by and all the youths of the kingdom brought their plants to the emperor for inspection. Ling told his mother that he wasn't going to take an empty pot, but his Mother said he must be honest about what happened.

Ling felt sick to his stomach, but he knew his Mother was right. He took his empty pot to the palace.

When Ling arrived, he was amazed at the variety of plants grown by the other youths. They were beautiful - in all shapes and sizes. Ling put his empty pot on the floor and many of the other kinds laughed at him. A few felt sorry for him and said, "Hey nice try."

When the emperor arrived, he surveyed the room and greeted the young people. Ling just tried to hide in the back. "My, what great plants, trees and flowers you have grown," said the emperor. "Today, one of you will be appointed the next emperor!"

All of a sudden, the emperor spotted Ling at the back of the room with his empty pot. He ordered his guards to bring him to the front. Ling was terrified. "The emperor knows I'm a failure! Maybe he will have me killed!"

When Ling got to the front, the Emperor asked his name. "My name is Ling," he replied. All the kids were laughing and making fun of him. The emperor asked everyone to quiet down. He looked at Ling, and then announced to the crowd, "Behold your new emperor! His name is Ling!" Ling couldn't believe it. Ling couldn't even grow his seed. How could he be the new emperor?

Then the emperor said, "One year ago today, I gave everyone here a seed. I told you to take the seed, plant it, water it and bring it back to me today. But I gave you all boiled seeds, which would not grow. All of you, except Ling, have brought me trees and plants and flowers. When the rest of you found that the seed would not grow, you substituted another seed for the one I gave you. Ling was the only one with the courage and honesty to bring me a pot with my seed in it. Therefore, he is the one who will be the new emperor!"

Source: The Empty Pot by Demi, Published by Henry Holt & Co (J) (Sep 1, 1996)
ISBN: 0805049002, http://isbn.nu/0805049002

Submitted by Dean Peters

~~~~~~~ THIS & THAT:

Signs You're in for a Long Sermon.

There's a case of bottled water beside the pulpit in a cooler.

The pews have camper hookups.

You overhear the pastor telling the sound man to have a few (dozen!) extra tapes on hand to record today's sermon.

The preacher has brought a snack to the pulpit.

The preacher breaks for an intermission.

The bulletins have pizza delivery menus.

When the preacher asks the deacon to bring in his notes, he rolls in a filing cabinet.

The choir loft is furnished with La-Z-Boys.

Instead of taking off his watch and laying it on the pulpit, the preacher turns up a four-foot hour-glass.

The minister says, "You'll be out in time to watch the super bowl" but it's only November!

Source: Clean Laugh, http://www.cybersalt.org/lists.htm


A woman had gained a few pounds. It was most noticeable to her when she squeezed into a pair of her old blue jeans.

Wondering if the added weight was noticeable to everyone else, she asked her husband, "Honey, do these jeans make me look like the side of the house?"

"No, dear, not at all," he replied. "Our house isn't blue."

Source: Colorado Comments, http://coloradocomments.com/

~~~~~~~ TRIVIA:

Jamestown, New York (AP):

An upstate New York man's pumpkin patch only yielded three pumpkins this year. But that was more than enough.

One weighed 450 pounds, another about 800 pounds, and the third came in at 1,245 pounds, just 17 pounds shy of the world record.

Tim Bailey said he grew the large orange fruits from "Atlantic Giant" seeds, and gave them a lot of water and "organic matter."

Bailey recently trucked his big gourd to the World Pumpkin Confederation Weigh-Off in Clarence, near Buffalo. The pumpkin could not qualify for competition because of a small crack, meaning it had to be relegated to exhibition fruit class.

Bailey first became interested in large-pumpkin growing while talking with his brother-in-law, giant watermelon grower Dave Fisher. Bailey also grows giant sunflowers.

He self-pollinates the pumpkin blossoms for better results and limits the number grown per vine. The super pumpkin has a 5-foot circumference.

Bailey communicates with other giant pumpkin growers through the Internet and plans to sell and trade seeds from his big one.

Source: WhiteBoard News, http://www.joeha.com/whiteboard/

WITandWISDOM™ ISSN 1538-8794 - Copyright © 1998-2002 by Richard G. Wimer - All Rights Reserved
Any questions, comments or suggestions may be sent to Richard G. Wimer.