It’s time for a little levity

Charlie Warner
Argus Editor

I’ve always been amazed at how well some people can repeat jokes and humorous stories. I’ve heard thousands of good jokes but have a hard time remembering them. If I have an opportunity to repeat the funny tale soon after hearing it, I can sometimes do it justice. Other times, I fail miserably.

I heard a funny story recently that I’d rate “G” for general audiences that I’d like to share with you.

A fellow was sitting in the top row of a racetrack on a beautiful summer day. From his seat, he could look out behind the bleachers to the stables where the horses were being prepared for the upcoming races. He noticed a Catholic priest in one of the stables praying over a horse. About 10 minutes later the horse the priest had prayed over won the first race.

As soon as the man saw the results of the first race, he quickly spun around to see if the priest was still in the stable area. Sure enough, the priest was praying over another horse. A few minutes later, that horse won the second race.

The race spectator figured he had a system going here and placed a bet in the third race on the horse that had been visited by the man in black. The system worked. The horse won and the man placed all of his winnings on the next horse that the priest visited. This went on for the first six races. The man who usually didn’t wager a lot of money on the races had amassed a small fortune.

Figuring he had a perfect system, the man raced to his bank, which was only a few blocks away, pulled out all of his savings and returned to the track. He got back into his seat and looked back over the bleachers to the stable area. The priest was praying over a jet-black filly. The man rushed to the window and placed his entire winnings and savings on the black filly. The man was so excited. This would be his ticket off the poor farm.

The final race started and the black filly stumbled out of the gate. At the first turn the black filly was already three furlongs behind. By the midpoint of the race the black filly was hopelessly out of the race and finished dead last.

The man was devastated. He couldn’t believe what happened. His system had seemed foolproof. He spotted the priest and figured he’d try to get an explanation. He stopped the priest, explained how he watched him bless each horse and that horse would win. He went on to say how he bet on each of those horses and decided he’d sink his entire life’s savings into the final race. He continued that he had wagered everything on the black filly, which was the final horse he saw the priest bless.

“You’re not Catholic are you, Mister?” the priest asked. “Why no,” the man replied. “Why?”

“If you were, you’d know the difference between a priest giving a blessing and the last rights,” the padre explained with a smile.