Four brothers left home for
college, and became successful as a doctor, sales rep, lawyer, and insurance
salesman and prospered. Some years later, they chatted after having dinner
together. They discussed the gifts that they were able to give to their
elderly mother who lived far away in another city.
The first said, "I had a big house built for Mama."
The second said, "I had a hundred thousand dollar theatre built in the
The third said, "I had my Mercedes dealer deliver her an SL600."
The fourth said, "Listen to this. You know how Mama loved reading the Bible
and you know she can't read it anymore because she can't see very well. I
met this priest who told me about a parrot that can recite the entire Bible.
It took twenty priests 12 years to teach him. I had to pledge to contribute
$100,000 a year for twenty years to the church, but it was worth it. Mama
just has to name the chapter and verse and the parrot will recite it."
The other brothers were impressed.
After the holidays Mom sent out her thank you notes. She wrote:
"Milton, the house you built is so huge. I live in only one room, but I have
to clean the whole house. Thanks anyway."
"Marvin, I am too old to travel. I stay home, I have my groceries delivered,
so I never use the Mercedes. The thought was good. Thanks."
"Michael, you give me an expensive theatre with Dolby sound, it could hold
50 people, but all my friends are dead, I've lost my hearing and I'm nearly
I'll never use it. Thank you for the gesture just the same."
"Dearest Melvin, you were the only son to have the good sense to give a
little thought to your gift. The chicken was delicious. Thank you."