Memphis BBS History > Artificial Reality > Yellow Ping Pong Balls

subj: Yellow Ping Pong Balls
base: Artificial Reality
from: Amadeus
on  : (sometime in 1995)

Once there was a young boy who was of age to begin going to school. On 
the day that he was to enter the first grade, his father told him, 
"Son, I want you to do well in this life and to do this, you need a 
good education, so I will make you a promise! If you do well in school 
and make all A's, I will give you ANYTHING that you desire." The boy 
knew that his father was good to his word, as they were very wealthy. 

At the end of the first grade, the son brought home all A's. His 
father was delighted! "Ok, son, now it is time for me to fulfill my 
part of the bargain. Just tell me what you want and you may have it!" 

The son replied in a meek voice, "Father, I would really like to have 
some yellow ping pong balls." 

The father thought this a little odd, but being good to his word, gave 
his son one tube of yellow ping pong balls. 

The next year, the father remembered how well his son had done in 
school the previous year and attributed it to his promise of a gift, 
so he said to his son... "Bring home all A's again, my boy, and you 
shall have whatever you desire!" The young boy smiled and headed off 
to school. 

This year, he also came home with all A's and his father asked," what 
is it you wish, lad?" 

"Sir, I would like to have a box of yellow ping pong balls!" 

The father asked, "Are you sure, son? Maybe you would like to have 
some comic books or a wagon or maybe a puppy!" 

"No thank you, sir.....just the ping pong balls, if I may." 

His father, wanting to be true to his word, went out the very next day 
and bought his son a box of three dozen yellow ping pong balls. The 
boy thanked his father and put the balls in his closet for safe 

The next year, the same thing happened....... 

The father promised anything the boy desired. 

Again.......all A's. 

"I would like some yellow ping pong balls, dad!" was the reply. 

His father agreed and bought him two tins of yellow ping pong balls, 
which the little boy quietly put in his closet. 

Sometimes late at night, the boy would take out his yellow ping pong 
balls and roll them around on the floor, as they were very quiet, but 
he always accounted for every one and put it neatly back into the 

When the fourth grade came around, the father, feeling that his son 
was beginning to mature a little, promised the same thing as before, 
"Bring me home a report card full of A's and you will have anything 
that you want, son" 

At report card time, sure enough, the young lad again brought home a 
straight A report. 

"EXCELLENT! EXCELLENT my boy!! What would you like?? And none of this 
nonsense about ping pong balls. Get a real present!!" 

"But, FATHER, you said that you would get me anything I wanted! 
Please, please, I would like to have some yellow ping pong balls as my 

His father grudgingly agreed, because he figured, "If it gets the boy 
to give 100%, then it is worth giving in to a `phase'." 

The next year, the same thing........ yellow ping pong balls. 

Sixth grade.......... yellow ping pong balls. 

By the seventh grade, his father was beginning to worry about the lad, 
but he once again asked the boy, "Well, you have once again brought 
home all A's! What would you like to have? A minibike?? How about 
unlimited access to the arcade with no limit on the amount of games 
that you can play??" 

"Dad, what I really want is a box of yellow ping pong balls." 

Once again, the father agreed and brought the boy his reward of ping 
pong balls. 

Eighth grade........ All A's! 

"What would you like to have son? A motorcycle? Maybe a new computer?? 
How about a party with all your friends on MTV?? 

"That would be great dad, but more than anything else, I would like to 
have some more yellow ping pong balls!" 

By the time the ninth grade rolled around, the young boy was turning 
into quite a dashing young man, but he was shy and quiet and didn't 
make friends well. His father once again promised anything that he 
wanted for bringing home all A's. 

The son, by now recognized locally as a genuis beyond his years, had 
no trouble producing the needed grades. 

"What is it that you want then, my boy??? How about a nice little 
sports car, you know, something to impress the ladies...." *wink!* 

"No dad, just the ping pong balls. That's all I really want!" 

Tenth grade........ the same thing........ all A's and yellow ping 
pong balls. 

In the eleventh grade, the father was really beginning to be proud of 
how his boy had grown. In just a couple of years, he would be out on 
his own and the father was beginning to get used to the idea of his 
son's apparent like for yellow ping pong balls. So when the time came 
for presents, the father didn't even ask, he just gave his son another 
box of yellow ping pong balls. 

Now was the final year of school and once again the young man had 
brought home all great grades. He was valedictorian of his class, 
class president, man most likely to succeed and captain of the varsity 
cheerleading squad, not to mention starting quarterback for the 
football team and first string pitcher for the school baseball league. 

After delivering his graduation address to the graduating class, his 
father, beaming with pride, walked with him out to their car. As they 
got in, his father said, "Son, I have a feeling what you are going to 
say, but I must ask anyway......what can I do for you this year?? I am 
sooooooo proud of my boy!" 

"Dad, what I would really like this year is a brand new, bright yellow 
Porsche convertible with mag tires, an AM/FM disc changer and a credit 

His father was overjoyed!!! The very next day, he went out and 
purchased the vehicle and had it delivered to the house, wrapped in a 
huge bow and ribbon and with a ten foot card that read, "Thanks for 
being my son!! You're the Greatest !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" 

The boy promptly thanked his father and went upstairs and one box at a 
time, loaded all the yellow ping pong balls into the back of the car, 
carefully pouring them in until they filled the car, with the 
exception of the driver's side floorboard. The boy, with a look of mad 
passion jumped into the vehicle and floored it! He drove as fast as he 
could go, while the ping pong balls `perculated' in the back. He soon 
found himself on a high mountain road careening carelessly around 
hairpin turns, when all of a sudden, one of the ping pong balls rolled 
under his feet. Distracted at the thought of losing one of his ping 
pong balls, the boy lost control of the car and went flying over a 600 
foot dropoff! 

The father received a call at work and was told that his son was still 
trapped in the car and had little time left to live. His father raced 
to the boy's side. It was terrible!! The boy was barely breathing..... 
the car, a mangled mess of twisted metal and there were yellow ping 
pong balls all over the hillside. 

His father, feeling that it was his son's last moment, knelt down and 
whispered in his son's ear, "Son, before you go, there is one thing 
that I have to know......" 

"All these years, all those ping pong balls.........what did you want 
with all of those yellow ping pong balls???????" 

His son drew a deep, labored breath and in his dying breath whispered 
closely into his father's ear, 

"DAD, I..........." 

And then he died.

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