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Back To The Context

Welcome to Back To The Context, a regular feature on Con City Press where we take well known quotes used frequently in popular culture and put them back into the context from which they originate. Ever wondered who said "I'll be back" first and in what context? This is the place to find out.

Click here for the full list of quotes explained here, or browse the newest entries below.

Trial by combat

posted Oct 9, 2017, 3:15 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Oct 9, 2017, 3:15 PM ]

The concept of a `trial by combat' is often used in fantasy literature and is believed by many to originate in the dark middle ages. In truth, the first recorded use of this phrase was in the year 1849 in Con City. That year saw the longest trial in the little over half century that passed since Con City was built, over a seemingly petty debate between two businessmen in Brickton.

Owing to the extremely high income tax of seventy percent in Brickton, in effect since the year before, businesses often resorted to shady practices in order to survive, and one particular business was the Morton Steel Mill. Its owner, Jack Morton, reportedly forced his workers to do fifteen hour shifts every day. He publicly admitted that he was forcing his workforce to spend more time in the steel mill than was reasonable, but placed all blame on the Rothenberg Mines and their owner Carl Rothenberg, who he believed charged him `outrageous sums of money for every crate of coal and iron.' Carl Rothenberg, who claimed his prices were fair given the seventy percent income tax, and who himself had his miners work sixteen hours a day, sued Jack Morton for slander over these remarks.

The argument led to a trial that went on for two months and gradually degenerated into shouting contests at the Brickton Courthouse. A local newspaper published an article on the heated debate and argued that while the two industrialists poked fingers at each other, their workers continued to suffer under terrible working conditions, and even speculated that both businesses were on a path to bankruptcy, and that this may have been the goal of Brickton's Mayor Jeremiah Roarke when he raised the income tax to seventy percent the year before.

The day after the paper was published, the public started to speculate over Mayor Roarke's intention to use his position of leadership to engineer himself a means of taking over the steel industry at the end of his term. For some inexplicable reason, the newspaper in question was hit with a new tax that forced it to cut its circulation by eighty percent, while the trial between Jack Morton and Carl Rothenberg abruptly ended when the judge ruled Morton innocent. Not to be denied, Carl Rothenberg turned to the highest court of law in the county and took his case against Jack Morton to Con City.

Week after week passed by with Morton and Rothenberg shouting each other's face off at the Con City Courthouse, much to the pleasure of the local tabloid papers of the era, and much to the displeasure of the presiding judge. Six months into the proceedings the trial took a most unexpected turn when Con City's infamous Mayor, former outlaw Buford Salter unexpectedly turned up at the courthouse and made an announcement. He put into effect a new law, which ruled, that any trial that lasted more than two weeks, may optionally be resolved with a fistfight. Dubbed `Lex Trial By Combat,' the new law allowed either side of the legal battle to initiate the transition from the courtroom to the back alley, where the presiding judge would officiate a fistfight between the two parties until one beat the other into unconsciousness. The law also stated that the agreement of one party was sufficient to invoke the law, that is, no one may refuse participation in the trial by combat, and to do so would automatically be punished by twenty years in prison.

Jack Morton, who was reportedly twice the size of Carl Rothenberg, immediately requested for the trial by combat. Rothenberg, to his credit, did not even try to back out of the fistfight, and fought tooth and nail against the much larger Morton during the simplified trial. Jack Morton took his time beating Rothenberg into a pulp and knocking out half of the man's teeth. He returned to Brickton declared innocent of slander to manage his struggling steel mill until 1853 when he was finally forced to go out of business. Morton's facilities were auctioned later that year and purchased by Jeremiah Roarke the day before his term as Mayor of Brickton came to an end.

Get off my lawn

posted Sep 18, 2017, 3:10 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Sep 18, 2017, 3:10 PM ]

`Get off my lawn' as one might expect, is a phrase prevalent in similar context as `make like a tree,' and not just because of their direct relation to plant life. The main difference between them is that `make like a tree and leaf' is universally applicable wherever one might be, while `get off my lawn' is almost always used in gardens. One might think that the go to expression for telling a trespasser to leave your yard has been around since gardens were invented, but in reality the phrase was born in the 19th century.

A man named Buck Howell operated a farm in the town of Black Lake. He cultivated a variety of vegetables, and took great pride in his work. One day in the year 1868, he found his neighbor, Benjamin Henderson, knee deep in dirt in the middle of his cabbage patch. When he asked Mister Henderson for an explanation, his neighbor said that his wedding ring had slipped off his finger when he was working in his own garden, and it flew over the fence.

Buck Howell quietly swept his gaze over his carrot patch and his flower bed which spanned the ten or so yards between the cabbage patch and the fence. He counted the trampled flowers and dislodged carrots, then shook his head, and said to his neighbor, `get off my lawn.'

Mister Henderson insisted that he absolutely had to find the ring, otherwise, his wife would divorce him. In response, Buck Howell simply folded his arms and repeated his request. When his neighbor refused to budge and continued to rummage around in the cabbage patch, he turned away and walked into the house.

According to the memoirs of Benjamin Henderson, the distressed neighbor was at first afraid that Buck Howell would come back with a shotgun. Instead, he came out of the house wearing thick gloves and a beekeeper helmet. Relieved that Mister Howell would simply get on with his chores and leave him be after all, he went back to looking for his ring. That was until Buck Howell came back carrying one of his beehives.

`I told you to get off my lawn, neighbor,' Mister Howell said, and then simply dropped the hive into the cabbage patch.

The memoirs of Mister Henderson write in excruciating detail about how difficult and humiliating it was for him to have to eat through a straw after that day, and how grateful he was for his good fortune in that the bees did not destroy his eyes.

Despite the lack of witnesses and the utter difficulty Benjamin Henderson faced in trying to speak, news of the incident spread like wildfire and it wasn't long before everyone in Black Lake knew not to mess with Buck Howell's bees, the true deterring power behind the words `get off my lawn.' And while most of the world is unaware of the true and horrible origins of this expression, the people of Black Lake keep the legend alive by always using the expression in its extended form: `get off my lawn, lest the bees eat your face.'

Make like a tree

posted Aug 21, 2017, 2:23 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Aug 21, 2017, 2:23 PM ]

The phrase `make like a tree,' most often followed by the words `and leaf,' or alternatively, `and get out of here,' is a popular way of telling someone to go away. Yet the words `make like a tree' were first used in exactly the opposite meaning.

In 1839 in Greenwell, farmer Daniel Kruger became rich and famous thanks to his unbeatable fighting roosters, Carrot and Stick. By 1842 his cockfighting business had become so successful, numerous attempts had been made to steal his prized roosters from his farm. Since Mister Kruger was not afraid of dogs, the thefts were repeatedly and spectacularly thwarted by his pitbulls, Tomato and Cage. Despite the highly effective deterrent, desperate and envious people kept on trying to acquire Carrot and Stick.

In early 1843, the fighting roosters caught the attention of Con County's famous outlaws, the Salter Gang. The infamous Buford Salter led his entire gang into the farm under the cover of night with a brilliant plan. As soon as the dogs spotted the group and came running, he said to his gang, `quick, make like a tree.' His words were meant as an instruction to stand perfectly still, in an effort to confuse the pitbulls.

George Hill, one of the oldest members of the gang, feared that the pitbulls would relieve themselves on him if he were to pretend being a tree, and so he made off at a sprint. The dogs chased after him while the rest of the Salter gang stood rooted in place. Buford Salter remained unfazed by Mister Hill's inability to stick to the plan, and, taking advantage of the fact that the dogs were out of the way, he waved his gang to proceed further into the farm. Soon they had the famous fighting roosters in their possession and they quietly made it to safety while the painful screams of George Hill echoed across the countryside during the getaway.

Eventually, the pitbulls grew tired of mangling Mister Hill which allowed him to crawl back to the Salter Gang's hideout, albeit drenched in his own blood and missing several huge chunks of his own flesh, as well as an eyeball. Despite his horrific injuries, he was greeted by laughter and ridicule. `Hey Georgie, why don't ya make like a tree and leaf?' his fellow gang members would say to him, and would do so for many years to come. They even taunted him in public, especially in bars, which is the reason why the phrase `make like a tree' became a part of popular culture, and why George Hill eventually left the Salter gang entirely.

He was not the only one to leave the gang. Buford Salter managed to secure a hefty ransom for the fighting roosters from Daniel Kruger, which allowed him to transition out of a life of crime and into politics. With extensive funds at his disposal, he eventually became the Mayor of Con City, despite the scores of Con City residents insisting that he should `make like a tree and leaf.'

Nice guys finish last

posted Jul 24, 2017, 8:13 AM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Jul 24, 2017, 8:13 AM ]

The words `nice guys finish last' are associated with villainy, or at the very least unsportsmanlike behavior, and used as justification for one's unsavory actions. Hardly anyone would expect that this phrase originates in an act of selflessness.

The town of Greenwell is famous for sports since the second half of the 19th century, and while most think of baseball or bullfighting when it comes to the self styled Green City, other sports are also popular to this day, such as the annual Greenwell Marathon. The run snakes around town spanning many popular areas and draws a considerable live audience.

The very first Greenwell Marathon was held in 1871. The favorite to win the race was a runner named Michael Banks, a veteran who had won numerous races in Con City in the years prior. Half way through the race he enjoyed a nearly two-minute lead on the runner-up. While he earned a good deal of applause for his performance, several members of the live audience in fact booed him. They called him names such as `showoff' and `bully,' and yelled disparaging comments at him such as `boring!' and `you're not giving anyone a fair chance, you prick!'

It was when he heard someone yell `you're not a nice person!' that he reportedly started to slow down, and before too long the runner-up took him over. Then he proceeded to slow even more and fell back to third place, then to fourth, and so on. Some worried that the exertion of the marathon was taking a toll on him and he would faint at any moment, but he finished the race in last place, exactly one second after the runner in front of him.

`I simply realized I had an unfair advantage over these enthusiastic amateur runners,' he stated when he was interviewed after the race. `I have experienced the taste of victory many times, so I know exactly how good it tastes. I wanted to be nice, you know. Nice to my fellow contestants. Let them enjoy success. So I fell back to be the nice guy.'

The phrase `nice guys finish last' was the headline of the news article which chronicled the outcome of the marathon the next day. The phrase eventually became a part of popular culture, while Michael Banks went down in history as the first ever runner in Con County to hold both first and last places on his professional record. He was also the sole focus of Greenwell news outlets for several weeks following the now infamous marathon, in part due to the unprecedented nature of his act of generosity, and in part due to the public outrage among the fans. Numerous members of the audience had placed bets on him winning the match, and they felt cheated by Banks literally handing over the first place to another contestant. They accused him of being in cahoots with betting agencies who, as it turned out, had made a considerable profit on Banks' more than unexpected loss.

Michael Banks denied having any connection to betting rings and the police found no evidence of foul play on his part, so the case was dropped very quickly. The enraged fans turned their ire to the people who had `heckled' their runner throughout the race, convinced that Michael Banks would never have given up the victory if he hadn't been goaded into it by the vocal minority. Two months and about two dozen bar fights later tensions died down and the incident was largely forgotten; or so it seemed.

A year later Michael Banks once again participated in the Greenwell Marathon, and once again found himself the target of a very vocal audience. Only this time, the loudest members of the audience were threatening to subject him to various forms of bodily harm, were he to surrender the race once again. Despite the verbal abuse, he hung back for much of the race, occasionally pointing with his thumbs to the words on the back of his shirt which said, `I'm a nice guy.' That was until several members of the crowd started to chase him with pitchforks.

He was the first across the finish line, a small army of angry fans barely ten seconds behind him. Even then he kept on running, for good reason, since the judges disqualified him for relying on outside help to win the race. The decision did nothing but reinforce the idea that, one way or the other, nice guys finish last.

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

posted Jun 25, 2017, 3:13 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Jun 25, 2017, 3:13 PM ]

The words `keep your friends close and your enemies closer' are synonymous with the idea of keeping a very close eye on your enemies in order to prevent them from doing you any harm. This is a meaning that the above phrase acquired over the decades, but when it came into being it stood for something quite different.

In the 1870s and 1880s the annual Con City Fair was a popular summer attraction in the community of Con County. Visitors would flock to the growing market town to purchase locally produced art and prize winning melons grown in the fields east of town, and also to participate in games. The most popular of these was the farting contest.

The competitors would prepare for the contest by eating elaborate meals comprising beans, onions, and various spices, cooked specifically for the event. After the meal they would stand in the middle of a crowd of thirty people within a circle marked with chalk on the ground. The contestants would then have one minute to drive as many people out of the circle as possible by farting.

By 1881 the contest was synonymous with the words `keep your friends close and your enemies closer.' The philosophy behind the strategy, as recorded in news articles of the era, was to use the contest to make one's enemies suffer as much as possible, if only for one minute. Yet it was essential to keep one's friends nearby as well, in case the contestant turned out to be so successful that their enemies decided not to abandon the circle but to converge upon them with intent of bodily harm.

The most successful contestant in the history of the fair was a man from Brickton named Kyle Willis. He won the farting contest in five consecutive years between 1879 and 1883. In 1884 he lost to a Con City born man called Alec Strong, who managed to drive everyone out of the circle in a record breaking seventeen seconds. `I guess my bowels are just that foul,' he said after claiming the trophy. When later he was seen celebrating in the company of the very people whom he ejected from the circle in the contest, many began to question whether he had adhered to the principle of keeping your enemies closer to you than your friends. Kyle Willis petitioned the organizers to disqualify Strong, but no one could prove any wrongdoing.

In 1884 the farting contest was won by Kyle Willis in a record breaking five seconds. While no one could prove that he had broken the unwritten rules of the game, the organizers saw it fit to put an end to the contest and from 1885 the Con City Fair went on without the infamous farting competition. The concept of keeping one's friends close and one's enemies closer survived the demise of the contest and lives on to this day, as does the memory of the violent beating Kyle Willis and Alec Strong both suffered at the hands of the disappointed attendees of the Con City Fair in 1885.

Best not miss

posted May 8, 2017, 2:27 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated May 8, 2017, 2:27 PM ]

`If you come at the king you best not miss,' one might hear when someone tries to usurp whoever sits at the top. A phrase often used in the government, organized crime, and office politics. Yet its origins have very little to do with positions of power.

In the year 1865 a man named Kirk Johns, better known as Kirk Six Shot, was the best sharpshooter in the town of Black Lake in Con County. The town in those days was extremely small, hence being the best shot was hardly an accomplishment, and sure enough Kirk Six Shot often found himself called out for his less than stellar shooting skills. One day he decided he'd had enough of the constant berating of the townsfolk and made the bold claim that he could hit a pea from a hundred yards with his pistol. Loud laughter echoed across the pub at which he had chosen to make his announcement, while the bartender told him, `next you'll say you could use a rock to hit a tin can hanging from a tree branch ten whole yards away.'

Feeling infuriated at the utter disrespect of the town, Kirk Six Shot immediately accepted the challenge, and when someone suggested he should perform it by the beehives at the Howell farm, he agreed to that, too. And so it came to pass that he stood alongside a dozen or so of his fellow townspeople at the farm of Buck Howell, ten yards away from a tree where one of Buck Howell's beehives hung. The old man himself was busy tying a tin can to the branch using a piece of string. Taking care not to let it touch the beehive, he positioned it five inches from the hive and then returned to Kirk Six Shot.

`Best not miss, sonny,' Buck Howell said to the young man, then he and rest of the townsfolk retreated to a safe distance.

Kirk Six Shot hurled his rock at the can but to his misfortune struck the beehive instead. When the bees swarmed out of the hive and took off in his direction, he tried to run, but he only made it a couple of yards away before the bees closed the distance and descended on him with all their wrath.

Witnesses later said they had never seen anything so gruesome all their lives. The cruel fate of Kirk Six Shot, from that day called Kirk The Faceless, burned Buck Howell's words of warning into their minds, and over the years the phrase spread across the globe and eventually took on its modern form.

Whether any aspiring party leaders or ambitious gangster lieutenants have any clue as to who they have to thank for this expression is anyone's guess. The people of Black Lake doubt it very much, and believe that if the world truly knew what had transpired that day at the Howell farm, the exact form of the modern phrase would read, `best not miss, lest the bees eat your face.'

Carrot or stick

posted Apr 10, 2017, 3:07 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Apr 10, 2017, 3:07 PM ]

When you hear someone talk about the carrot and the stick, your probably think of mules, or rabbits. The phrase is used to weigh the option of harsh disciplinary action versus the choice of providing motivation through some sort of reward. Nowadays in politics within Con County, many politicians use this phrase at staff meetings when they consider whether they should bribe or blackmail an opponent. Despite the obvious allusion, the origin of this expression in fact has nothing at all to do with mules and rabbits. It doesn't even have anything to do with real carrots and sticks; it has everything to do with chickens. Roosters, to be exact.

In 1837 in Greenwell, in the year of the infamous incident with the wild bull and the cattle stampede it caused, farmer John Langston found himself facing serious difficulties adapting to a life in a town where cattle farming had been banned. Believing that not much if any risk came with poultry farming, he decided to convert his cattle farm into a chicken farm. By the spring of 1839 he came to regret his decision, as his hens started to disappear one after the other. One night he caught sight of a fox dragging one of his remaining hens into the forest, but he failed to chase down the animal. Since he was afraid of dogs, he tried to rely on traps to keep the fox at bay, but the fox proved too cunning and observant to fall into any of them, and Mister Langston's hens kept on disappearing as the days went on.

In his desperation, he turned to the owner of another chicken farm for help. Daniel Kruger operated a very successful chicken farm since years before the cattle farm ban, and one of the reasons behind his success was his flock of fighting roosters. His two best combatants were named Carrot and Stick. For many years, the two have been the undisputed champions of cockfighting, a sport of considerable popularity in Greenwell at the time. When John Langston asked Daniel Kruger to lend him some of his fighting roosters to help chase off the fox, Mister Kruger lent him Carrot and Stick, and all he asked for in return was that Mister Langston lie in wait and watch the roosters fight the fox. Mister Kruger wanted to know which of the two roosters, Carrot or Stick, would fare better against the sneaky carnivore. Mister Langston agreed.

That night, the fox did not show up until 2 AM. John Langston found himself barely able to keep his eyes open, but when he heard the sounds of fighting his sleepiness instantly evaporated and he rushed to the barn. He found Carrot and Stick beating the unholy hell out of the fox. The two roosters had the fox cornered and they took turns plucking huge chunks of red and white fur from the forest predator. The fight went on for ten minutes until the roosters simply allowed the fox to scamper away, bleeding from dozens of wounds and limping. John Langston never saw the animal again, nor did any of his hens go missing ever again.

As for the great debate of whether Carrot or Stick was the better fighter, it was never decided. As far as John Langston could tell, the two roosters did equally well against the fox, which put a large smile on Daniel Kruger's face. The owner of the fighting roosters had offered the people of Greenwell to place bets on who would dominate the fight. `Who will kick more ass, Carrot or Stick?' he asked. He even put up a few posters around town asking the infamous question. Very few people bet on the contest ending in a draw, hence Mister Kruger earned himself a fortune through the bets.

Since then, the phrase `carrot or stick' took on a life of its own and evolved in its meaning, no doubt due to Mister Kruger's odd choice of naming one of his fighting roosters after a vegetable. His cockfighting business prospered for many years, until bullfighting took it over as the most popular sport in Greenwell, but even then his farm made a good profit on the fights between Carrot an Stick, which, for some reason, always ended in a draw, yet people kept paying good money to watch them. It is perhaps no surprise that Gerald Embers, Chairman of the Greenwell Bullfighting Organization, cites Daniel Kruger and his roosters as a huge inspiration for his own business practices.

Read the manual

posted Mar 20, 2017, 3:28 PM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Mar 20, 2017, 3:28 PM ]

`Read the manual,' occasionally worded as `read the fine manual,' but most often used in the form `read the fucking manual,' is a favorite expression of software developers and computer system administrators, especially those who don't know how to write a decent manual. Few people know that this phrase pre-dates the invention of computers.

In the 1840s the increasing trade traffic to and from Con City prompted the construction of the north-south train line. Work began in 1843 and was overseen by a local man named George Klein. Three months into the construction he rode a steam engine down the first mile of tracks in order to demonstrate his progress to the Mayor. The train derailed a third of the way and very nearly killed both the overseer and the conductor.

Upon inspecting the tracks, he was baffled to find that the two train rails were in fact not laid evenly. Rather, the distance between them steadily decreased from the starting point of the track by as much as five inches over the one mile length of the track. When he questioned his workers about that, a man named Theo Smith confessed that he had known about the error, except he thought it had not been an error at all.

`I did everything just like it was on the posters, Mister Klein,' he said. `The further along the track you go, the closer the rails are supposed to be to each other. I did think it was a bit strange, but I thought, the poster had to be correct. So I took a hacksaw and shortened the crossties, each slightly more than the previous one, to make sure we close the gap between the rails as we lay them.'

Witness accounts report that George Klein stood in perfect silence in the room for two whole minutes before he grabbed Mister Smith by the collar, dragged him to the riverbank, and tossed him into the water. It was then that he yelled to the drowning man: `Next time, Theo, read the fucking manual!'

Theo Smith was rescued by one of his friends who, along with Smith himself, was fired the next day, while the overseer proceeded with the repairs of the faulty track. The day after, the Mayor learned that Mister Klein had ordered the entire track to be pulled up and laid again, which prompted the Mayor to fire the overseer and his entire workforce. The track, which over the years cemented Con City's status as the center of commerce in Con County and ruined any chance that settlements like Brickton might have had at building a strong economy, was in the end built by craftsmen from Brickton; the very same craftsmen who later popularized the expression `if only I had known.'

Need to know basis

posted Feb 20, 2017, 10:54 AM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Feb 20, 2017, 10:54 AM ]

`Need to know basis,' or, `that's on a need to know basis and you don't need to know,' is the street expression for the idea that classified information cannot be shared with everyone. As you might guess, the phrase originates from a man in a position of authority, though not quite the way you might expect.

In the year 1903, just a few months after the Great Flood that destroyed Con City, journalists gathered on a field to the north of town where a tree house served as the temporary City Hall. Howard Jackson, the Mayor of Con City, was set to make an announcement regarding the reconstruction of the city which the evacuated residents and business owners had been demanding since the day of the flood. Mayor Jackson himself, however, was not present at the press event. His deputy, Adam Asher, announced that the Mayor was in the process of finalizing the negotiations with an unnamed investor about the funding of the constructions.

The journalists of course bombarded Adam Asher with questions regarding the investor's identity. The investor, Frank Oberdick, who later went on to be Mayor of Con City (among other things), had asked Mayor Jackson to keep his name a secret in order to build anticipation for the upcoming announcement, set to take place a week later, when Oberdick and the Mayor would stand before a crowd side by side and shake hands on the deal. In accordance with the instructions passed to him, Adam Asher deflected just about every question at the press event. When the last question came, he answered it with the words, `that information is on a need to know basis and you don't need to know,' then took his notes and left the podium. The question was, `when will the Mayor and the investor come forward?'

The next day all news outlets in Con County crucified Asher for his refusal to reveal the date of the much anticipated visit of the then unnamed investor. Asher issued a prompt press release in which he insisted that he had misheard the question and revealed the date of the upcoming event, but his words were met with skepticism. Mayor Jackson, who wanted the date of the contract signing with Oberdick to be known and anticipated by everyone, and was forced to push the meeting and thereby the reconstruction of Con City back by another two weeks, fired Asher. When Asher asked for a detailed reason for his dismissal, the Mayor reportedly told him that the reason was `on a need to know basis.'

He went that way

posted Jan 23, 2017, 5:09 AM by Viktor Zólyomi   [ updated Jan 23, 2017, 5:09 AM ]

An often seen situation in works of fiction is the reliance of a lawbreaker on a friend standing at a junction to send the lawman giving chase in the wrong direction. At such times, the friend says to the lawman, `he went that way,' while pointing in the opposite direction as the one the lawbreaker had taken. Few people know that this often used phrase in fiction actually originates in real life.

In the year 1925 the infamous Red Scoundrel, a masked thief who stalked the streets of Con City for the better part of the 1920s and 1930s, robbed a liquor store while a police officer was on patrol in the neighboring street. As he made his escape, the policeman saw him and gave chase. The Red Scoundrel ran extremely fast and managed to gain a considerable distance on the police officer, who lost sight of him after the thief turned the fourth corner. At the fifth corner, a young man was selling newspapers. The police officer stopped and asked him whether he'd seen the Red Scoundrel.

`He went that way,' the young man said, pointing to his left. The police officer took one glance at the `no entry' sign on the street in question, then decided that the witness was lying, and proceeded to give a one minute sermon about the rules of one way streets and the consequences of lying to a police officer. Finally, he offered the newspaper boy one chance to amend his testimony, or face jail time.

The witness timidly pointed to the right and once again said, `he went that way,' to which the police officer nodded and promptly ran down the one way street. The Red Scoundrel, who had of course gone in the opposite direction, avoided capture that day. The newspaper boy later went on to tell his experience to all his friends, and before long all of Con City knew to always point the police in the opposite direction, should the Red Scoundrel run past them. This was just one of the reasons the Red Scoundrel remained at large for many years to come.

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