A philosopher went into a closet for ten years to contemplate the question, What is life? When he came out, he went into the street and met an old colleague, who asked him where in heaven's name he had been all those years. "In a closet," he repied. "I wanted to know what life really is." "And have you found an answer?" "Yes," he replied. "I think it can best be expressed by saying that life is like a bridge." "That's all well and good," replied the colleage, "but can you be a little more explicit? Can you tell me how life is like a bridge?" "Oh," replied the philosopher after some thought, "maybe you're right; perhaps life is not like a bridge."
A boy is about to go on his first date, and is nervous about what to talk about. He asks his father for advice. The father replies: "My son, there are three subjects that always work. These are food, family, and philosophy." The boy picks up his date and they go to a soda fountain. Ice cream sodas in front of them, they stare at each other for a long time, as the boy's nervousness builds. He remembers his father's advice, and chooses the first topic. He asks the girl: "Do you like potato pancakes?" She says "No," and the silence returns. After a few more uncomfortable minutes, the boy thinks of his father's suggestion and turns to the second item on the list. He asks, "Do you have a brother?" Again, the girl says "No" and there is silence once again. The boy then plays his last card. He thinks of his father's advice and asks the girl the following question: "If you had a brother, would he like potato pancakes?"