Fantastic Fables

by Ambrose Bierce

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The Life-Savers

SEVENTY-FIVE Men presented themselves before the President of the Humane Society and demanded the great gold medal for life-saving.

"Why, yes," said the President; "by diligent effort so many men must have saved a considerable number of lives. How many did you save?"

"Seventy-five, sir," replied their Spokesman.

"Ah, yes, that is one each - very good work - very good work, indeed," the President said. "You shall not only have the Society's great gold medal, but its recommendation for employment at the various life-boat stations along the coast. But how did you save so many lives?"

The Spokesman of the Men replied:

"We are officers of the law, and have just returned from the pursuit of two murderous outlaws."

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It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.