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Illustration: Speed, Progress

Two New York city slickers tired of life in the city and bought a West Texas ranch. They wanted to live like their ancestors. These New Yorkers asked their neighboring rancher if he had a mule for sale. He didn't, but they started chatting, and the slickers noticed some honeydew melons piled up against the barn. They asked what they were, and the rancher decided to have a little fun. He told them they were mule eggs; if they wanted to buy one, it would hatch, and they would have a mule. The asking price was $50. Boy, what a deal!

During the bumpy ride back to their ranch, the mule egg bounced right out of the truck. A Texas jackrabbit saw the melon and happily ate away. Racing back to the egg, they saw the jackrabbit sitting in the middle of the melon. They were astounded that their mule egg had hatched. The jackrabbit took off, and they chased it through a pasture. After chasing it for more than a mile, the city slickers fell down from exhaustion. One lamented that they had lost the mule, and the other responded that he didn't really care -- he didn't think he could plow that fast anyway! (Charles Lowery, SBC Life, June/July 20-05)