Fableistic.

Aesop’s Fable:

A miser turned all his wealth into a single large lump of gold. He then buried it in a field. Each day he would go and dig it up and marvel at how much gold was his. A thief noticed this and followed him secretly. Then when the miser was gone the thief dug up the gold and took it.

The miser was greatly upset by this, but a farmer who had observed it all said, “Place a rock where your gold used to be and pretend that’s it. It will do you as much good.”

Discussion Questions

1. Is it always better to diversify your assets?

2. On whose property did the miser bury the gold? Was it his own or public land? Would this make a difference?

3. How should the thief declare the gold on his tax returns?

4. Was the thief a professional or a guy who just happened to notice the miser going to the same place every day? Spend some time on this question. Your teacher’s fixing a gin and tonic.

5. What kind of profession is “miser” anyway? Have you ever mised?

6. Is this story victim-blaming?

7. Like many of the fables attributed to Aesop this story has been retold in various versions for over 2500 years. How did the farmer basically manage to invent modern economics?

 

9 Comments

  1. Ann Koplow

    I spent some time on this comment: How do you manage to consistently reinvent modern blogging?

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      That is a serious and amazing question, one that has floored me because I never thought of myself as reinventing modern blogging, and I can only say I try to write what I hope other people will enjoy, but with my own perspective which many seem to find unusual.

      Reply
  2. BarbaraM

    What percent of my final grade will this test count?

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      Odds of winning depend on the number of entries. Please keep your test booklet closed until told to open it. Fill in each circle completely with a number two pencil. If you have something other than a number two pencil I’d really like to see it because I’ve never seen any other number.

      Reply
  3. Beata

    I really enjoy your blog 🙂

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      Thank you, and thanks for dropping by.

      Reply
  4. Arionis

    Homework? What the what? I’ll have to get back to you on this one when I can think of some good answers. And by good I mean totally off the wall ones.

    Reply
    1. Arionis

      OK, I’m ready now…

      1. Is it always better to diversify your assets?
      Yes, as long as it’s only assets you are diversifying. On the other hand, you don’t want to diversify your ass. Spreading that around usually leads to a good deal of trouble.

      2. On whose property did the miser bury the gold? Was it his own or public land? Would this make a difference?
      I think the only difference would be he would probably have to have some permit or other to bury on public land.

      3. How should the thief declare the gold on his tax returns?
      Probably not as capital gains. More along the lines of ill gotten gains.

      4. Was the thief a professional or a guy who just happened to notice the miser going to the same place every day? Spend some time on this question. Your teacher’s fixing a gin and tonic.
      Was the thief named Smaug the dragon? If so, then definitely a professional. If it was Bilbo, then not so much.

      5. What kind of profession is “miser” anyway? Have you ever mised?
      A two part question? a) I would say it’s a dirty profession, seeing as how you have to dig in the ground every day. b) Spellchecker says “mised” is not a word, so I don’t have to answer this part. Have your lawyer talk to my lawyer.

      6. Is this story victim-blaming?
      Not until the miser picked up that rock and bashed the smart ass farmer in the head.

      7. Like many of the fables attributed to Aesop this story has been retold in various versions for over 2500 years. How did the farmer basically manage to invent modern economics?
      IDK, something to do with Enron, and bailouts, and bulls, and bears?

      Reply
      1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

        These are all brilliant answers so let me assure you that big red “F” on your paper stands for “Fantastic!”

        Reply

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