Friday, August 21, 2009

Fortune cookie creativity

I don't know if it's considered bad luck to eat more than one fortune cookie at a time -- will the clashing fortunes disturb the space-time continuum? -- but I indulged myself recently and came across the following fortune in my first cookie:

"Be careful! Bees with honey in their mouths have stings in their tails."

It took me a second to understand this one, but when I did, I decided I liked it. See, "bees with honey in their mouths" means any garden-variety sweet-talking snake (copy machine salesmen, for example) and "stings in their tails" means that, all sweetness aside, you're likely to be stung by one of these bees eventually.

I understand I probably didn't have to explain that to you.

The fortune in the next cookie read:

"Listen to the wisdom of the old."

That's it. Just "Listen to the wisdom of the old." Where's the cleverness? Where's the effort? Where the hell are the bees?

Seriously, it's as if the fortune cookie writer had one more to bust out before lunch and pulled out the generic "Old people are smart!" platitude.

Somewhere in a fortune cookie writers office (I suspect it's in Jersey) there's a guy busting his butt and another guy barely earning his keep. Which, come to think of it, pretty much describes every office I've ever worked.

(Photo copyright Michael Fletcher; visit him on Flickr.)