The Positive Spin    by Robert Ciolfi

While others continue in vicious baiting practices, the optimists of the world persist. Nowhere in the world today is this seen more than in the attitude of Joe X. Joe X was a normal man in most respects until his mid-twenties, when a life-changing brush with death transformed him forever. Joe was caught in a tornado, and lost both his big toes. He now uses prosthetics, and can no longer work. Nonetheless, Joe continues to operate numerous on-line porn sites in his spare time, and his story of triumph is an inspiration to us all.

When Joe’s wife, Thelma X, began fertility treatments, Joe had no idea what was about to befall him. All Joe had to do was transport Thelma’s eggs to the clinic in Chicksaw. His rusty ’76 Olds barely had enough gas to make the trip. He was lucky enough, however, to have picked up a hitchhiker – Earl, a black man who gave Joe two dollars for gas, and a lift to Chicksaw. Parenthood seemed certain. The pair proceeded down I-40.

Out of nowhere, a whirlwind picked up the rolling sedan and brought it round and round; higher and higher, with Earl screaming all the way, "My good God in heaven!", until it came to an ignominious rest atop a large gathering of cow plops in the field of a neighboring farm. Joe’s toes were gone. Earl was dead. A soft mooing could be heard in the distance from the now eerily silent scene. Joe would never work again. Sitting blissfully unaware at home, Thelma laid out baby clothes in the new room. Joe’s muted cries of "moo!" were as lost to the air as his sense of sanity. A hero lay dying.

"Out of nowhere, a whirlwind

                                                        picked up the rolling sedan..."

While hospital officials pronounced Earl dead-on-arrival, the inquisitive farmer who had dragged Joe’s body three-quarters of a mile to the local filling station, where he was then placed on the back of a pick-up truck and driven to Mercy General, gave a rifling through Joe’s wallet. Three dollars would buy some doughnuts – buy some doughnuts they would indeed. Joe’s spleen cried out in anguish. A leaf fell in the autumn air.

Manufacturer’s profit’s were up that month, Frank Y, Joe X’s boss, nonchalantly noticed from across the board room. And where was Joe? Joe X would not be seen again at Z Corp. His time was finished. His hopes for a secure future were gone. His toes were…removed, and in heaven.

Today Joe X is a proud father – an active Jehovah’s Witness, and avid bowler. He jogs three times a month, and never forgets to brush. However, Joe X will never work again. But we can work for Joe. Our tax dollars can, and will, under this new, visionary Democratic budget, go to support Joe X, and those like him who deserve our pity, and share our dreams of a united, caring world of hope.