Bad news—Joy our Koi died. This has not been a good week for pets in our house. I don’t know what happened. Just yesterday, Joy was swimming happily, wagging her little fish fins in her beautifully decorated fish tank. This morning she was floating at the top of the tank. Cole doesn’t know yet, and I’m not going to tell him until he wonders where Joy is, and then I will say she is on the roof. You don’t know that old joke? Allow me . . .
While sunning himself in the Bahamas, a wealthy English businessman received a telegram from his butler that read simply, “Cat dead.” Distraught at the loss of his beloved pet, the businessman cut short his holiday and returned home. After giving the cat a decent burial in the garden, he remonstrated with his butler about the cold-hearted nature of the telegram.
“You should break bad news gently,” he said. “If I had to tell you that your cat had died, I would have sent a telegram saying, “The cat’s on the roof and can’t get down.” Then a few hours later, I would have sent another telegram saying, “The cat’s fallen off the roof and is badly hurt.” Finally, a couple of hours after that, I would have sent a third telegram, saying, “The cat has sadly passed away.” That way, you would have been gradually prepared for the bad news and would have been able to deal with it better.”
“I understand, sir,” said the butler. “I will bear that in mind in future.”
With that, the businessman booked another ticket to the Bahamas and resumed his holiday.
Two days later, he received another telegram from his butler. It read, “Your mother’s on the roof and can’t get down.”
I think I’ll leave our beautiful aquarium up in honor of Ping Pong and Joy the Koi and name our next fish Figment.