Patrick O'Reilly was lucky. Since the day he had found that four leaf clover, everything good seemed to come his way. He had met the wonderful Rosie, and after a whirlwind romance, they were married. And now, a year later, he was the proud father of beautiful twins, a boy and a girl.

At work, the story was the same. He had been promoted and had received a substantial raise, and now the firm had come up with a profit sharing plan.

Patty was certain his good fortune was due to his 4-leaf clover. Everywhere he went, he was certain to be carrying the talisman in his suit pocket.

One morning, Patty could not find the clover.

He searched the house, but it was not there. In panic, he tried to recall when he had last seen it.  He finally recalled it was in his gray suit that he had dropped off at the dry cleaners.

He rushed to the cleaners only to find that the work had been completed and his suit was ready to be picked up. He searched the suit and found the 4-leaf clover, still in one piece but now flattened from the dry cleaning.

From that day on, Patty's fortunes changed. Life was good but was no longer perfect.

The little inconveniences were always there.

He had a flat tire as he was driving to an important meeting.

The twins developed measles when his boss and his wife were over for dinner.

No, Patty's life had changed. He still carried the amulet, but he was certainly not living under the silver lining he was used to and had come to expect.

Finally, he had had enough. He visited the parish priest to see if he could help him understand what had happened.

"This certainly was to be expected," he was told. "You should have known ... One should never press one's luck."