Date: Wed, 4 Jun 1997 12:41:41 -0400
One night, a Delta twin-engine puddle jumper was flying somewhere above New
Jersey. There were five people on board: the pilot, Michael Jordan, Bill
Gates, the Dali Lama, and a hippie. Suddenly, an illegal oxygen generator
exploded loudly in the luggage compartment, and the passenger cabin began to
fill with smoke. The cockpit door opened, and the pilot burst into the
"Gentlemen," he began, "I have good news and bad news. The bad news is that
we're about to crash in New Jersey. The good news is that there are four
parachutes, and I have one of them!" With that, the pilot threw open the door
and jumped from the plane.
Michael Jordan was on his feet in a flash. "Gentlemen," he said, "I am the
world's greatest athlete. The world needs great athletes. I think the world's
greatest athlete should have a parachute!" With these words, he grabbed one of
the remaining parachutes, and hurtled through the door and into the night.
Bill Gates rose and said, "Gentlemen, I am the world's smartest man. The
world needs smart men. I think the world's smartest man should have a
parachute, too." He grabbed one, and out he jumped.
The Dali Lama and the hippie looked at one another. Finally, the Dali Lama
spoke. "My son," he said, "I have lived a satisfying life and have known the
bliss of True Enlightenment. You have your life ahead of you; you take a
parachute, and I will go down with the plane."
The hippie smiled slowly and said, "Hey, don't worry, pop. The world's
smartest man just jumped out wearing my backpack."