Rich Man, Paw Man

At Friendly’s one night, I spied a nearby booth where a couple were engaged in some sort of — meditation?  Their fingertips  were touching and eyes closed and between them on the table was a lottery entry form. Every few moments they’d take up a pencil and select a number. They were praying over their Lotto entry. Praying to win.

I almost shouted out, “HEY… Monkey’s Paw!”

This goes back to reading The Monkey’s Paw in eighth grade. I already sort of knew the story, having seen the 1972 film Tales from the Crypt, and its take on how three wishes can go horribly wrong. The short story, written by W. W. Jacobs in 1902, is terrific; you can hear John Lithgow reading it awesomely on this episode of Selected Shorts.

But because of The Monkey’s Paw, I’ve been convinced it’s very bad luck to wish for money.

DSC_0694Even the most rational people cling to something that is not so rational; on the outside they scoff at luck and fate, but deep inside harbor something beyond reason that guides their actions.

So, it shouldn’t worry me when a fortune cookie promises wealth, I mean really, c’mon. A stupid fortune cookie? I set it aside without another thought… after tossing a pinch of salt over my shoulder. My left shoulder, of course.

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