Chinese Emperor Joke: The Sequel

Thu Jun 6 21:17:29 PDT 2002

We all know, of course, how the artisan for his Majesty the Emperor of 
India at last agreed to accompany the artisan for his Majesty the Emperor 
of China (and, of course, the ubiquitous executioner) back to China to 
repair the bush in exchange for two delicacies, but not many know what 
happened when they got there.

At last, thanks the uncovering of certain ancient scrolls, this can now be 

When at last (delete 6-8 pages of description of calamitous events) the 
three of them made it back to China, they were greeted by appalling news: 
There had been yet *another* storm, the equal to the one that had damaged 
the famous Glass Bush, and in the course of it, all of the Imperial pigs 
and Imperial chickens had escaped!

Now the artisan from India had been promised two meals in exchange for his 
help: pork Ala Chinese Emperor, and chicken Ala Chinese Emperor; and he had 
no intention of engaging in the difficult task of repairing a Glass Bush 
without the delicacies he'd been promised.

When the situation was explained to his Majesty the Emperor of China, all 
he could think to do was to command all of the Buddhist Monks to pray as 
hard as they could for the pigs and the chickens to find their way 
back.  The Chinese artisan, however (being a rather materialist sort of 
fellow, as many artisans are), didn't have much faith in this solution, and 
he suggested that an emissary be sent to Japan in an effort to purchase 
more pigs and chickens.

After some thought (and after a week's prayers by the monks produced 
neither bacon nor drumstick), the Emperor agreed, and the artisan himself 
(still manacled to the executioner, of course) was sent to Japan.

Months and months went by with no word from the artisan.  In the meantime, 
the artisan from his Majesty the Emperor of India was, not to put too fine 
a point on it, stubbornly sitting on his duff, waiting for the food he'd 
been promised.  At length, the head of the local Buddhist monastery had a 
message sent to the artisan in Japan.  The message said, "We've been 
praying so hard for these chickens and pigs that we've been forced to 
neglect our other duties.  Of course, we are only too happy to continue, 
but we would like to know how things are going in Japan, because if you 
have secured the stock, we can get back to our other concerns."

After several weeks, a reply was received by carrier pigeon: "No ham, no 
fowl; pray on."