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A Tale of Two Strangers: If you left us, come back to your own.

The King of the Great Land was living his last days in his lonely White Palace. One day a woman from the Blue House decided she would try to become the people’s new Queen. The Blue House big shots and the talebearers did not want a woman in the White Palace, but they spoke only in hushed voices because the woman was very popular, and her old man was one of their own. The big shots hated her pant suits and found her voice pitch downright annoying. So they looked and looked around for one who could challenge her, but alas, they found none as popular as she. Then one day, behold, a strange stranger in a strange-stranger suit came strutting down the hill, crying, “CHANGE! CHANGE!” The big shots and the talebearers could not believe their eyes. They jumped and danced and started to cry, “CHANGE, CHANGE!” Together they walked every winding road, followed every tiny path to every small town, and as they went along people joined them, jumping and dancing and crying, “CHANGE, CHANGE!”

One day an old sage who lived in the main town stepped out of his house and in the distance he saw a strange stranger followed by a big crowd coming his way. The old sage could see the crowds cheering, for his eyes were keen as ever, but he could not hear what they were saying. He had listened for too many years to all, young and old, speaking their woes in his ears, and now he could no longer hear, though for that he was so much the wiser. When the strange stranger got near, the old sage noticed his strange suit and cried out, “That man is wearing a strange suit!” The townspeople were stunned. Nobody had noticed the strange stranger’s strange suit. They looked him up, and they looked him down, and indeed found it all very strange.

When the Blue House big shots heard about this, they gathered up at the hill. After several hours of intense whispering, they called the strange stranger and said, “You must take off your strange suit.” They sent for the House tailor and ordered him to fashion a beautiful suit for the strange stranger, but, alas, when the tailor returned, the new suit looked very much like the popular woman’s pantsuit! Then one of them shouted, “Bring me a tie!” So they dressed up the strange stranger in his new suit and tied his tie. The strange stranger took off in his new suit and went strutting up and down the valley crying, “CHANGE! CHANGE!”

Then one day the Red House big shots who had been following the Blue House with great concern, and who wanted to replace the King with one of their own, remembered the Blue House woman. After several hours of intense whispering, they decided to look for a woman to be their next in line. So the Red House big shots went looking up and down the Great Land until they arrived at a town where a woman leader had thrown out the bad guys and brought prosperity to her people. They liked her because she was very popular too.

When the Blue House big shots and talebearers saw that the Red House had picked a woman to be next in line, they were enraged. They screamed ugly things about her, but people all across the Great Land began to cheer for her. The Blue House big shots did not sleep that night or the next. Then the Blue House big shots remembered the words of the old sage. They called the strange stranger and commanded, “Take off your strange suit!” They immediately dressed him anew with a regular blue suit. Then the talebearers took the strange stranger’s suit to another woman who looked just like the Red House woman, and they commanded, “Wear the strange suit!” So the Blue House talebearers took the woman up and down the valley shouting, “This woman is wearing a strange suit!” They mocked her and threw stones at her, while the townspeople watched in total bewilderment. Even some of the Red House talebearers became confused. After several hours of intense chattering, some of the townspeople began to nod, while others stood by their nays. “That’s not her,” they exclaimed. “That suit belonged to a Blue House man!” “Fools, cried the yeas. “Don’t you see it’s a woman’s suit?” The Blue House big shots and talebearers could not believe their ears. They danced and jumped for joy. The job was done.

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