It was just after the Revolution in France in 1814, and people were being executed right and left.
"Hear ye, hear ye! Today we have a triple feature: an atheist, a priest, and a computer programmer!" "Huzzah! Huzzah!"
The executioner said to the atheist, "We're having a special today: you can go to your Maker face up or face down. What will it be?"
Atheist says, "I don't believe there *is* a Maker. Send me face down."
So the executioner pulls the lever, and the guillotine drops, but just before it gets to him, it stops in mid-air. "A *miracle*!" the crowd shouts! So they let him go free.
He turns to the priest. "Face up or face down?" "Oh, I'm too humble to go face up," he says. So they put him in face down, and pull the lever. It falls, but stops before it hits him. "*Another* miracle!" the crowd shouts, and they let him go free.
The executioner turns to computer programmer, asks "Face up or face down?" "I've always been a curious guy," he says. "Let me go face up." They put him in, reach over to pull the lever, and he says, "Wait a minute! I see what the problem is: you've got a kink in that rope up there."