Sometimes these 'heartwarming' stories are a bit too sappy for me but this one is truly interesting...

In 1986, Mikele Mebembe was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University .

On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Mikele approached it very carefully.

He got down on one knee and inspected the elephant's foot and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Mikele worked the wood out with his hunting knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot. The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Mikele stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away.

Mikele never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.

Twenty years later, Mikele was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Mikele and his son Tapu were standing. The large bull elephant stared at Mikele, lifted its front foot off the ground, then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.

Remembering the encounter in 1986, Mikele couldn't help wondering if this was the same elephant. Mikele summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Mikele's legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.

Probably wasn't the same elephant.

________________

BEER, FISHING, GOLF & SEX:

A man was walking down the street when he was accosted by a particularly dirty
and shabby-looking homeless man who asked him for a couple of dollars for
dinner.

The man took out his wallet, extracted ten dollars and asked, "If I give you
this money, will you buy some beer with it instead of dinner?"

"No, I had to stop drinking years ago," the homeless man replied.

"Will you use it to go fishing instead of buying food?" the man asked.

"No, I don't waste time fishing," the homeless man said. "I need to spend all my
time trying to stay alive."

"Will you spend this on greens fees at a golf course instead of food?" the man
asked.

"Are you NUTS!" replied the homeless man. "I haven't played golf in 20 years!"

"Will you spend the money on a woman in the red light district instead of food?"
the man asked.

"What disease would I get for ten lousy bucks?" exclaimed the homeless man.

"Well," said the man, "I'm not going to give you the money. Instead, I'm going
to take you home for a terrific dinner cooked by my wife."

The homeless man was astounded. "Won't your wife be furious with you for doing
that? I know I'm dirty, and I probably smell pretty disgusting."

The man replied, "I want her to see what happens to a man after he has stopped
drinking beer, going fishing, playing golf, and enjoying sex."

___________________

Axis of Evil Wannabes, by John Cleese

Bitter after being snubbed for membership in the "Axis of Evil", Libya, China and Syria today announced that they had formed the "Axis of Just as Evil", which they said would be "more evil than that stupid Iran-Iraq-North Korea axis" President Bush warned of in his State of the Union address.

Axis of Evil members, however, immediately dismissed the new Axis as having, "for starters, a really dumb name".
"Right. As if they are just as evil ... in their dreams!" declared North Korean leader Kim Jong-il. "Everybody knows we're the best evils? eh evilest? that we're the best."

Diplomats from Syria denied they were jealous over being excluded, although they conceded they had asked if they could join the Axis of Evil. "They told us it was full," said Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"An axis can't have more than three countries", explained Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. "This is not my rule, it's tradition. In World War II you had Germany, Italy, and Japan in the evil Axis. So, you can only have three. And a secret handshake. Ours is wickedly cool."

International reaction to Bush's Axis of Evil declaration was swift, as within minutes, France surrendered. Elsewhere, peer-conscious nations rushed to gain triumvirate status in what has become a game of geopolitical chairs.

Cuba, Sudan and Serbia announced that they had formed the "Axis of Somewhat Evil", forcing Somalia to join with Uganda and Myanmar in the "Axis of Occasionally Evil", while Bulgaria, Indonesia and Russia established the "Axis of Not So Much Evil Really as Just Generally Disagreeable".

With the criteria suddenly expanded and all the desirable clubs filling up, Sierra Leone, El Salvador, and Rwanda applied to be called the "Axis of Countries That Aren't the Worst But Certainly Won't Be Asked to Host the Olympics".

Canada, Mexico and Australia formed the "Axis of Nations That Are Actually Quite Nice But Secretly Have Some Nasty Thoughts About America", while Scotland, New Zealand and Spain established the "Axis of Countries That Want Sheep to Wear Lipstick". "That's not a threat, really, just something we like to do", said Scottish Executive First Minister Jack McConnell.

While wondering if the other nations of the world weren't perhaps making fun of him, a cautious Bush granted approval for most axis, although he rejected the establishment of the "Axis of Countries Whose Names End in 'Guay", accusing one of its members of filing a false application.

Officials from Paraguay, Uruguay, and Norguay denied the charges. Norguays King Harald can't understand the rejection "I filled out the application myself".