One day, the two deputies in the sheriff's office answered an emergency call at a farmhouse. When they walked in, they found the naked bodies of a man and a woman in the bedroom. Both had been shot dead. When the deputies went into the living room, they found the body of a man with a gun at his side.
'No doubt about it,' said one deputy to the other. 'This was a double murder and suicide. This guy came home, found his wife in bed with somebody else and shot them both. Then he shot himself.'
'You're right,' agreed the other deputy. 'Double murder and suicide. But I'll bet you when the sheriff gets here, he'll say "It could have been worse," just like he always does.'
'No way!' said the first deputy. 'How could it be worse? There are three people in the house, and all of them have been shot to death. It couldn't possibly be any worse.'
'I'm just telling you what he'll say, that's all.'
'No, not this time, so yeah, I'll take up your bet. Ten dollars?'
Just then, the old sheriff arrived on the scene. He walked into the bedroom and saw the two naked bodies on the bed. He then walked into the living room and saw the man on the floor with the gun by his side. 'No doubt about it,' said the sheriff, shaking his head. 'It was a double murder and suicide. This guy came home, found his wife in bed with somebody else and shot them both. Then he shot himself.' After pausing for a moment, the sheriff looked his deputies squarely in the eyes and said solemnly: 'But you know, it could have been worse.'
The deputy who had lost his bet jumped up and shouted indignantly: 'Sheriff, how could it have been worse? There are three people in this farmhouse, and all three of them are dead. It couldn't have been worse!'
'Yes, it could,' the sheriff retorted. 'You see that guy on the floor? If he had come home yesterday, that would be me in there on that bed!'