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Home Motivational Story Time The price of envy

The price of envy

Motivational Story Time

While a poor woman stood in the market-place selling cheeses, a cat came along and carried off a cheese. A dog saw the pilferer and tried to take the cheese away from him. The cat stood up to the dog. So they pitched into each other. The dog barked and snapped; the cat spat and scratched, but they could bring the battle to no decision.

“Let's go to the fox and have him referee the matter,” the cat finally suggested.

“Agreed,” said the dog.

So they went to the fox. The fox listened to their arguments with a judicious air.

“Foolish animals,” he chided them, “why carry on like that? If both of you are willing, I'll divide the cheese in two and you'll both be satisfied.”

“Agreed,” said the cat and the dog.

So the fox took out his knife and cut the cheese in two, but, instead of cutting in lengthwise, he cut it in the width.

“My half is smaller!” protested the dog.

The fox looked judiciously through his spectacles at the dog's share.

“You're right, quite right!” he decided.

So he went and bit off a piece of the cat's share.

“That will make it even!” he said.

When the cat saw what the fox did she began to yowl: “Just look! My part's smaller now!”

The fox again put on his spectacles and looked judiciously at the cat's share.

“Right you are!” said the fox, “Just a moment, and I'll make it right.”

And he went and bit off a piece from the dog's cheese. This went on so long, with the fox nibbling first a the dog's and then at the cat's share, that he finally ate up the whole cheese before their eyes.

(A treasury of Jewish folklore)