Monday, 1 October 2007

A very old philosophical joke

I was trawling through my old emails today and came across this joke that I sent the Golfer to cheer him up on one of his many overseas business trips. I have no idea where I found it so I can't credit it but thanks to whoever it was that told it to me:

A Philosophy professor stood before his class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a large empty jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks about 2" in diameter.

He then asked the class if the jar was full. They agreed that it was. So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas between the rocks. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was. The students laughed.

The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course the sand filled up everything else. "Now" said the professor, "I want you to recognise that this is your life. The rocks are the important things - your family, your partner, your health, and your children - things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full." "The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house, your car". "The sand is everything else - the small stuff". "If you put the sand into the jar first, there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for your life - if you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you".

"Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical check-ups. Take your partner out dancing. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, give a dinner party and fix the disposal". "Take care of the rocks first - the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand".

A student then took up the jar, which the other students and the professor agreed was full, and proceeded to pour in a glass of beer. Of course the beer filled the remaining spaces within the jar making the jar truly full.

The moral of this tale is that no matter how full your life is, there is always room for a beer.

In my case it would probably be a nice cold gin-and-tonic but apart from that I couldn't agree with it more!


Greg said...

So if I dump all the dirt out I can get more beer in, right?

Puddock said...


Well, if we're only going to have the liquid in the container, I'll have to swap the g & t for melted chocolate then - the complete food and it cheers you up too.