SAINT OR SINNER

G Pell, email

A DRUNK man reeking of alcohol got on a train and sat down next to a priest. The mans tie was stained, his face was plastered with red lipstick, and a half-empty bottle of gin was sticking out of his torn coat pocket. He opened his newspaper and began reading.

After a few minutes the man turned to the priest and asked: Say, Father, what causes arthritis?

My son, its caused by loose living, consorting with cheap, wicked women, too much alcohol and a contempt for your fellow man, the priest replied scornfully.

Well, Ill be damned, the drunk muttered, returning to his paper.

After sitting in silence for a while, the priest thought maybe hed come on too strong, and apologised to the man. Im sorry, my son. How long have you had arthritis? he asked.

I dont have it, Father, the man said. I was just reading here that the Pope does.