Lee Pitts is a freelance columnist for The and Paso Robles Press; you can e-mail him at [email protected].
I have a psychologist friend who told me that the best way to tell someone bad news is the traditional bad news/good news format. She insists that it’s best to tell her the bad news first and then comfort her with the latest good news, but I don’t really know. Here are some examples of how people you deal with on a regular basis can give you bad news.
The bad news is that the bank was recently sold and the new owners are no longer making loans. This means finding alternative financing for your farm and ranch loan within 48 hours. The good news is that I have a cousin who is a loan shark for the mafia, and I told him about your situation, and he agreed to lend you the money you need to repay the bank at an interest rate of 18% per day. His name is Vinnie with the scar, and he’ll be in touch soon.
From your doctor – The good news is that there is a treatment for your disease that requires you to take one of these pills every day for the rest of your life.
But, Doc, the prescription you wrote is only for three pills.
Yes, it’s bad news, I’m afraid.
From your favorite seed supplier – The good news is that only five of the 2,500 bulls we have sold in the past five years came from a known herd of bulls that were found to carry the genes for three deadly genetic disorders, including being born with five legs, a crooked spine or a tail as an ear. The bad news is that you bought all five. But wait, here’s more good news. As an apology, we are offering a ten percent discount on any bull you purchase at our next sale if you purchase ten or more animals.
From your wedding ring: The good news is that I talked to my parents about it and we are planning a small wedding. The bad news is I’m not going.
From the FBI: The bad news is that while endangered rockfish don’t live in your waters, our scientists have speculated that they might. Therefore, ALL water systems on your ranch should be fenced off from your livestock and kept at the proper temperature and stocking rate at all times. The good news is that you can still keep cattle on the rest of your ranch for a while……
Your vet – The bad news is that your cow has a very expensive disease. The good news is: If it doesn’t survive the treatment and we get a negative result, I’m a taxidermist and I buy skins too. Anyway, you’ll get your cow back.
From your favorite breeder – The good news is that your cattle are doing exceptionally well, currently top weights and achieving the highest prices in recent months. The bad news is that none of the Big Four wants to buy them.
From your lawyer – The good news is that I met your wife today and she told me that she recently invested $5,000 in two paintings that could be worth millions of dollars, and I think she is being careful.
That’s great news. She has always had a good eye and is a brilliant businesswoman. So tell me, what could be bad news?
The bad news is that the two pictures are you and your secretary.
From your favorite tanner: I have good news and bad news for you. The bad news is that your husband was in my shop today and accidentally hit one of my large sewing machines. The good news is that by the time you get it back, it should be fully recovered.
From your best friend. I’m going to end this and give you good news and bad news at the same time. Your wife is cheating on both of us.
How do you load…
We’ll get through this together, Atascadero…