Maybe you remember the old joke about an elderly couple who took a trip to Gatlinburg. While there, the husband wanted to take a helicopter ride through the Smoky Mountains. But his wife, more than a bit tight-fisted when it came to money, said the $50 price tag was too steep.

“I know you’d like a ride,” she said, “but fifty bucks is fifty bucks.”

“Listen Dear, I’m 85 years old, and if I don’t ride that helicopter while we’re here I may never get another chance,” the husband pleaded. His wife wouldn’t relent, saying again, “fifty bucks is fifty bucks.”

The pilot overheard the conversation and made an offer to take them both for a ride for free if they could stay quiet while in the air. But if they said one word, they’d have to pay the $50. They accepted the offer.

The pilot did all kinds of dare-devil stunts, zigzagging through a series of frightening maneuvers. Not a word was heard.

After landing, the pilot, quite impressed, turned to the husband and congratulated him for being able to keep quiet.

“Well, to tell you the truth,” the husband said, “I almost said something when my wife fell out. But you know, fifty bucks is fifty bucks.”

Did you ever know anyone like this fictional couple who hold so tightly to their money that they miss lots of opportunities to enjoy life.

The Bible warns us that life passes swiftly, like “a vapor that appeareth for a little time and then vanisheth away.” (James 4:14)

With this in mind, we’d be wise to make each moment matter.

Country music singer Tim McGraw sings a song that challenges us to “Live Like You Were Dying.” You may remember the lyrics. They’re about a man told by his doctor that he was dying. So, what did he do:

I went skydiving

I went rocky mountain climbing

I went two point seven seconds on a bull named Fu Man Chu

And I loved deeper

And I spoke sweeter

And I gave forgiveness I'd been denyin'

And he said some day I hope you get the chance

To live like you were dyin'

Truthfully, we should all strive to make each moment memorable.

And, it may not be such a bad idea to let your spouse enjoy an adventure now and again, perhaps even a helicopter ride. Just remember to buckle up if you go along.

You can reach Roger Alford at 502-514-6857 or

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