The Test

A Brooks’ Tale


Another rainy morning.

Abraham wondered if the coffee was made?  He just did not feel right until he had his morning cup of coffee.

To his great delight, Sarah had made the coffee before she had gone to work.  He preferred the exotic coffee blends…but Maxwell  House would have to do this morning.

As he sat on the porch he wondered what Isaac and Ishmael were doing?

Isaac was the CEO of Apple and had become a success beyond Abraham’s wildest dreams for him.

Ishmael was more a man of introspection and philosophical underpinnings.

Ishmael, was Isaac’s half brother.  They had different mothers.

Ishmael’s mom was, Hagar, and had been Sarah’s best friend…until her and Abraham’s trial separation.  During that sad time, Abraham began living with Hagar and from that relationship…Ishmael was born.

Abe texted Sarah, to remind her to pick up some Hanukkah candles as tonight was the first night of the celebration.

Isaac had promised to be in attendance, this evening, unless the merger meeting went longer than expected.

Apple was preparing to merge with Time Warner Inc….and the union would produce a company that he liked to refer to as the Behemoth.

Often, Abe told his son Issac that he was touched by G-d and that nothing could harm him nor stand in his way.

Issac was talented.  He had begun his employment with Apple…in the mail room and had risen to the CEO of the company.

His personality was magnetic…he drew people to him…people wanted what he had.

Issac, although he was fabulously wealthy and successful, continued to have Opportunity Meetings with the middle class and the poor.  This was actually one of the most enjoyable endeavors that he engaged in.

He was thrilled to see the excitement in the eyes of those in attendance at the meetings.  I, the narrator, having attended one of these meetings was amazed at not only the connection that Isaac made with the hungry audience but also his care and concern for each of them, individually, and their grateful response to that care.

Isaac could, if you followed his plan for success, transform you from a person in debt and struggling to make ends meet…to a financially successful individual in a matter of a few years.

There really is a compelling draw to the combination of faith and the power of positive thinking…and the results are either fantastic or demoralizing.

Now, Ishmael prayed seven times per day as he faced Meca.

He loved literature and theatre and the arts.

Ishmael loved the friendship and fellowship of all that he encountered.

He worked as a suicide counselor for the local social services institution.

Ishmael was accustomed to being considered less than Isaac.

He understood that he was born to a mother out of wedlock and he loved her and his father very much.

Ishmael sought the joys of living in his books and his faith and nature.

He felt such a reward…and such a high…each time that he convinced a person that called him or that came to see him…that they must not commit suicide.  That life had so much to offer them… and the richness and the beauty and the joy and the wonder of life…was to be savored and enjoyed until the last moment of natural life.

Ishmael lived in a small apartment.  He purchased his groceries at the local green grocer.  He attended off Broadway theatre…that he could afford.

His brother, often asked him, what he was going to do with his life…to which he responded…that he was doing it.

Ishmael was often reviled due to his low economic standing and his focus on poetry and literature and painting and writing, for no money, and service to his fellow man.

Sarah…tolerated Ishmael…but just barely…as every-time that she laid eyes upon him…she was reminded of the separation between her and Abe…and the pain and fear and suffering that she had endured during that cold season.  She recalled the suffering that they had endured for their faith…and the persecution and the pain and the separation and the death.

Sarah, took great pride in the financial success of Isaac and conversely she felt that Ishmael had obtained exactly what he deserved…a poor and meager lifestyle devoid of human comfort and the blessings of financial security.

Now, Ishmael worked in the local food Co-Op…and he was the, primary, bread slicer.

Often, Abe told Sarah, that they needed to financially help Ishmael more…

Sarah replied that if he had the moxie and the fortitude that Isaac had exhibited…then he would have not problem taking care of himself.

Abe texted Sarah, again, and told her to not forget the lochs and bagels and the gefilte fish.

He also mentioned that he had just heard from Ishmael and that he was coming along with his family.

Suddenly, Abe awakens…as Sarah called him to dinner.  He thought that he must have dozed off watching the baseball game.

He sleepily watched Isaac and Izzy play on the living room floor…and he thought…changes have to be made.






5 responses

  1. Loved the theme of inclusivity in your post! 😀

    1. Thank you, my friend. 😎

  2. I think Issac sounds a bit familiar… 🙂

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