For your slide-ruler among us:
An engineer died and reported to the pearly gates. An intern angel,
filling in for St. Peter, checked his dossier and grimly said, "Ah,
you're an engineer; you're in the wrong place."
So the engineer was cast down to the gates of hell and was let in.
Pretty soon, the engineer became gravely dissatisfied with the level
of comfort in hell, and began designing and building improvements.
After a while, the underworld had air conditioning, flush toilets, and
escalators, and the engineer was becoming a pretty popular guy among
One day, God called Satan up on the telephone and asked with a sneer,
"So, how's it going down there in hell?"
Satan laughed and replied, "Hey, things are going great. We've got air
conditioning and flush toilets and escalators, and there's no telling
what this engineer is going to come up with next."
God's face clouded over and he exploded, "What? You've got an
engineer? That's a mistake; he should never have gotten down there;
send him up here."
Satan shook his head, "No way. I like having an engineer on the staff,
and I'm keeping him."
God was as mad as he had ever been, "This is not the way things are
supposed to work and you know it. Send him back up here or I'll sue."
Satan laughed uproariously, "Yeah, right. And just where are YOU going
to get a lawyer?"
EXPLETIVE: A balm, usually applied verbally in hindsight,
which somehow eases those pains and indignities following
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