Death and Valor


Chuck Madden, 64, owns an asphalt plant in Texas and considers himself “white.”  He shared this joke over dinner. Chuck learned this joke while in the army.


One day, this guy dies and goes on up to heaven.  Well, as always, St. Pete greet him at the gates and takes him on a grand tour of the place.  As they’re goin along, Pete asks him, “so, uh, in your life on earth, did you ever get the chance to do anything really brave?  Like, something valorous.”  And this guy says, “Well, yeah.  As a matter of fact, I did.  You see, there was this woman who was trying to get to her car outside the supermarket, but before she got there she got blocked by these big, ol’ bikers.  These guys had muscles out to here [indicates size of muscles].  So I ran over and told them to let her through.”  Then St. Pete looks at him and says, “Wow, that was really brave.  When did that happen?” And the guy says, “About five minutes ago.”


This joke, in addition to providing humor, fulfills a secondary purpose in warning against pride, foolish valor, and fighting a losing battle.  In many ways, it discourages people from doing something stupid for the sake of honor and “courage.”  It is not surprising, then, that Chuck learned this while in the army serving in Vietnam.