System C

Or: Using Every Part of the Binder Clip Buffalo

By

The Toothbrush Story

My roommate and I were cleaning the bathroom. 

“Wait,” said my roommate. “I have the perfect tool for this.” 

He left, and returned moments later holding my toothbrush. 

“Um,” I said calmly, “that’s my toothbrush.” 

“No, it’s not,” he replied.  

Like I wouldn’t know? 

“This is the toothbrush,” he continued, “that I went around and asked everyone about. No one claimed it.” 

“I don’t think so,” I said. “Because if that were true, I would have said ‘That’s my toothbrush.’ ” 

He considered this. 

“Oh,” he finally said. “Then it must have been another toothbrush.” 

I threw that toothbrush away. 

By

No One Else’s Job

A merchant hurrying to market came upon a traveler picking up trash along the roadside.  

“Why are you picking up trash?” asked the merchant. “It’s not your job.”   

“Oh, my apologies,” replied the traveler, looking concerned. “Is it your job?”   

“No, of course not,” said the merchant.   

“Is it someone else’s job?” asked the traveler.   

“None that I know of,” replied the merchant.   

“Ah,” said the traveler, relieved. “Well, if it is no one else’s job, then it must be mine!”   

And they went their separate ways, each thinking the other a fool. 

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