The Bragging Game

In the preparation of her coffin, she asked a Taoist monk to write an inscription on her coffin. (Image: Bernadette Wolf / Vision Times)
In the preparation of her coffin, she asked a Taoist monk to write an inscription on her coffin. (Image: Bernadette Wolf / Vision Times)

A father and his son were walking together. A man who did not know them pointed to the son and asked: “Who are you?” The father replied: “He, the son-in-law of the 9th generation of the grandson of the Minister of Justice that was respected by the emperor, is my son.”

Auntie Wang was a rich old lady. In the preparation of her coffin, she asked a Taoist monk to write an inscription on her coffin. Auntie Wang gave a generous payment to the Taoist monk. She demanded the inscription to be a good and long statement so that she would look good in the hometown. The Taoist thought it over. Finally, he wrote an inscription like this: “The coffin of Auntie Wang, the next door neighbor of the Imperial Academy Scholar and the Imperial Emperor Worshipping Ceremony Host.”

About Good Laughs

(Image: Bernadette Wolf / Vision Times)

‘Good Laughs’ is meant to nourish a good heart with stories. (Image: Bernadette Wolf / Vision Times)

Good Laughs (笑得好) is a collection of short stories edited by Chinese doctor Cheng-Jin Shi (石成金) of the Qing Dynasty (1636-1912). This collection can be considered as the Chinese version of Aesop’s Fables. Dr. Shi was believed to have lived between the Kangxi and early Qianlong reigns. He also authored many other books on remedies for life and health.

Good Laughs is meant to nourish the heart with stories. In the preface, Dr. Shi wrote: “People are entertained by being sarcastic; I inspire people with sarcasm. It entertains the heart, but it can also save a life like acupuncture.”

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