|We all have nosy neighbor stories. These are the folks with intrusive, persistent curiosity. Most often, our sense of politeness prevents us from pushing their noses back into their heads. This short story presents a civil and satisfying solution.|
Sam Bacon, the most inquisitive man in New Haven, was riding down the Houston road from Falls Village, when an Englishman with one leg came into the car.
“I guess you been in the army, stranger,” said Sam, looking down at the leg.
“No, sir, I’ve never been in the army,” said the Englishman.
“Fought a duel somewhere, I guess,” suggested Sam.
“No, sir, never fought a duel.”
“Been wrecked on the cars, perhaps?”
“No, sir; nothing of that kind.”
Sam tried various dodges, but to no effect, and at last, almost out of patience with himself, as well as with the gentleman, whose patience was very commendable, he determined on a direct inquiry as to the nature of the accident which caused the gentleman to lose his leg.
“I will tell you,” replied the Englishman, “on condition that you will promise not to ask me another question.”
“Very well,” said Sam, “just tell me how you lost that leg, and I won’t ask you another question.”
“Well, sir,” remarked the Englishman, “it was bit off!”
“Bit off!” cried Sam. “Wa’al, I declare; I should jes like to know what on airth---“
“No, sir, not another question,” interrupted the Englishman, “not one.”
When Sam Bacon reached Bridgeport, he was taken down with a sick headache. His curiosity was too much for him, and he died without ever having it satisfied.
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