Six days before Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, the hometown of Lazarus--whom Jesus had raised from the dead. This is a good thing, because they had a banquet for Jesus and had Lazarus as a guest--and, let’s face it, the dead make terrible dinner companions!*
Martha served the meal. Mary was there, too, and, true to form, the lazy woman failed to help her sister out... again. Instead, she horas in** with her stone box of very expensive perfumed ointment. And she broke it, the nerd***, and spilled it all over the guest of honor! And most of it fell upon his stinky carpenter’s feet.
“Oh! I’m sorry! I’m so clumsy! Here, let me get that!” she cried. Saying this, the brazen hussy unbound her hair, and began using it to wipe up the mess! Pretty soon the whole place smelled like a Samaritan brothel--not that, uh, I would know anything about that.
But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples, said, "Why was this perfume not sold for three hundred denarii and given to poor?”
And Matthew said, "Three hundred? I could've got you five easily! What were you gonna do? Pocket the rest of the profit yourself? That's taxable income, ya' know!"
Ignoring him, Jesus replied, “Good point, Ju, though it’s a little late now. Mary, you’ve really got to be more careful with expensive things like that! After all, you'll always have the poor around, and they're always gonna need a handout.”
Then Lazarus piped up, “Incidentally, Mary, speaking as a member of the recently-deceased, why do you still have that thing around? Shouldn’t you have used that on me? I’m only your brother, you know!”
To which Jesus replied, “Maybe she was saving it for my burial. Did you consider that possibility?”
Judas snorted, “I’d lay 30 pieces of silver against the odds of that ever happening!”
*The undead are worse, yet, with their tendency to moan all through the polite conversation and failure to eat kosher, and whatnot.
**The waltz having not yet been invented, and not really very Jewish, anyway.
***Translator’s note: Since Hebrew has no vowels, it’s possible that this should read “She broke it (the nard),” referring to the contents of the container. Then again, it IS Melvin, we’re talking about.