A parrot fancier who happened into a London pet shop noticed a particularly colorful bird and asked its price.
"Five thousand pounds," the shop owner replied.
"Five thousand pounds?" the man asked. "Why so much?"
"Well, this bird speaks fluent Italian, Spanish and French, is brushing up on his German and starting to study English," came the reply. "With the European Community's unification due in 1992, he'll be a great asset."
"I don't care about the Common Market," the parrot fancier said. "What about that gray one in that other cage?"
The gray one was 15,000 pounds, he was told, because the bird spoke Arabic, Chinese, and Korean and was learning Japanese--"the languages of the 21st century."
"I'm too old to worry about the 21st century," the frustrated parrot lover replied. "What about that mangy brown one up on that perch in the corner?"
The brown one, said the shopkeeper, was 25,000 pounds.
"Twenty-five thousand pounds!" exclaimed the customer. "What does he do to worth that?"
"We're not sure," the pet-shop owner replied. "But the other two call him chairman."