a breakfast serial

One bite-sized story every morning to uplift, motivate, or provoke thought.

the old man and the potato garden

< a fable, author unknown >

An old man lived alone in Minnesota. He wanted to spade his potato garden, but it was very hard work. His only son, who would have helped him, was in prison. The old man wrote a letter to his son and mentioned his situation:

Dear Son,

I am feeling pretty bad because it looks like I won’t be able to plant my potato garden this year. I hate to miss doing the garden because your mother always loved planting time. I’m just getting too old to be digging up a garden plot. If you were here, all my troubles would be over. I know you would dig the plot for me, if you weren’t in prison.
Shortly, the old man received this telegram:

For Heaven’s sake, Dad, don’t dig up the garden!! That’s where I buried the GUNS!!

At 4 a.m. the next morning, a dozen FBI agents and local police officers showed up and dug up the entire garden without finding any guns. Confused, the old man wrote another note to his son telling him what had happened, and asked him what to do next. His son’s reply was:

Go ahead and plant your potatoes, Dad. It’s the best I could do for you from here.

Moral: No matter where you are in the world, if you have decided something deep in your heart, you can do it.


  Sandy Klosterwoman wrote @

If only your father was in prison, my dear, I could use this to jump start my spring gardening!!!!

  Ann wrote @

Mom, you better plant some bike parts in your garden!

  abreakfastserial wrote @

Hahaha this gave me a kick. You guys are funny 🙂

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