Pastor Don Baker relates a story of Rev. Tom Erickson: The Public Library has a system called "Dial-A-Tale." Anytime a
young child wants to hear a fairy tale, he can call the number and a voice comes on reading a short fairy tale to the listening
young ear. However, the number is only one digit different from Rev. Tom Erickson. Because the small fingers often make a
mistake, Tom gets frequent calls from a child listening for a fairy tale.
After several unsuccessful attempts to explain a wrong number to the small child, Tom felt he had only one
alternative. He obtained a copy of Three Little Pigs, and set it by the phone. Now, whenever a child calls, he simply reads them
the tale. A beautiful illustration of yielding personal rights. He didn't, as you might have thought, change his telephone number
to avoid the "invasion of his privacy."
In the summer of 1986, two ships collided in the Black Sea off the coast of Russia. Hundreds of passengers died as they were
hurled into the icy waters below. News of the disaster was further darkened when an investigation revealed the cause of the
accident. It wasn't a technology problem like radar malfunction--or even thick fog. The cause was human
stubbornness. Each captain was aware of the other ship's presence nearby. Both could have steered clear, but according to
news reports, neither captain wanted to give way to the other. Each was too proud to yield first. By the time they came to
their senses, it was too late.
Closer Walk, December, 1991.