This termite goes into a saloon, hops up on a stool, slaps his hand on the counter and says, “Bartender here?”.

When I returned from Vietnam, and before Judy and I got married, I told her this joke. Her response was not what I expected. She said, “I don’t get it”.

I didn’t explain it to her. In fact, I have never explained it to anyone. Ever. And I’m not going to explain it to you now. 

But one night about seven years later, at 2:30 in the morning…

Judy: “Bill, wake up!”, she said, shaking me from my sleep.

Bill (me): “What is it? Are you OK?”

J: “I’m fine.”

B (m) (a grin starting to spread across my face in the dark): “What do you want?”

J: “I got that joke.”

B (m): “Uh…What joke?”

J: “The one about the bar.”

B (m): “Oh. Well great.”

J: “I don’t think it’s funny.”

B (m): “OK. Is that all?”

J: “No. I think I’ll tell it at work tomorrow to see what they all think about it.”

B (m): “OK. Anything else?”

J: “No, that’s it. Goodnight.”

The next night Judy came home from work…

J: “I told the joke at work. They didn’t think it was funny, either.”

B (m): “Well, how did you tell it?”

J: “Just like you told me. I said, ‘This giant ant walks into a bar, sits down and asks for the bartender…”

B (m) “Delivery needs work…”


It’s 5:30.


In the morning. 

It’s dark.

It was dark when you went to bed at 1:00 AM and set the alarm on your Android phone.

Yours is a mind filled with activity, in anticipation of things to come. 

Or things already past.

Or both.

It was dark when you finally fall asleep at 2:39 AM.

It’s a fitful “rest”, and you toss and turn, but it is, in fact, some sort of sleep, though you don’t quite reach REM until about 5:15 AM. But it’s still dark, and you dream. You dream of a most pleasant time…


…You are walking along the beach, the waves softly rolling onto the shore, a gentle, breeze whispers through your hair and cools your face after a warm day, seagulls singing as they ride currents thirty feet overhead. You stop and turn to gaze upon the open sea as the sun gently lowers itself below the western horizon, taking with it all of the stress of the day gone by. 

You’ve heard of it, but have never taken the time to stop and notice – and marvel at – the beauty of the fabled “Green Flash”. For years – no, decades – you have read about it. You have listened to your friends speak most eloquently about the stunningly dazzling sight. 

But now, after all this time, you are ready. Ready to cast aside all of the anxieties of the day. Ready to discard the apprehensions of tomorrow. Ready to immerse yourself, completely, in the magnificence of nature. 

Nature above you. Nature below you. Nature in front of you. Nature behind and beside you. The only thing man-made object within range of any of your senses is you, yourself, and even you are a product of nature.

You take a deep, cleansing breath…

You have found peace. Tranquility. Stillness…

This, at last, is what life was meant to be. Not the disquiet of the daily grind mankind has wrought upon itself.

As you stand there alone, bathed in the incomparable majesty of God’s creation, the anticipation of the marvelous spectacle you are about to witness builds. Any moment now, the sun will blink out below the distant boundary that separates the sky from the sea and, if you are lucky, you will behold what comparatively few have been fortunate enough to notice throughout the ages.

You wait, watching in silence…

Until the moment finally arrives…