The give and take

A very familiar looking man was caught in a swollen river, grasping a rock and about to be carried away by the strong current.  Spotting the man’s plight, a passerby ran to him and shouted, “Give me your hand!  I will pull you out!” Though the man in peril clearly heard the passerby, he did not react. He did nothing.

Witnessing this, Nasrudin ran to the man in the river and asked, “What is your job?”  “I am the Chancellor of the Exchequer!” shouted the man.

“Then take my hand!” exclaimed Nasrudin.  The man stretched out his hand, Nasrudin grasped it and and pulled him to safety.

Nasrudin turned to the passerby who was watching, and said, “Chancellors only understand the word take, not the word give.”

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