Summary (Masterplots, Definitive Revised Edition)
Captain John Farrago, a Pennsylvanian in his fifties, decided to get on his horse and, accompanied by his servant Teague O’Regan, to travel about the country. He wanted to see how things were getting on and to observe human nature.
His first adventure was at a horse race. After the race, the crowd became embroiled in arguments. When the Captain tried to calm them, in the name of reason, he had his head broken for his pains. Starting out again the next morning, Captain Farrago came to a village where the election of a legislator was taking place. The candidate, a weaver, was not, in the Captain’s opinion, worthy of the office, and so he spoke out against the backwoods politician. Much to his dismay, the villagers wanted to send Teague, Captain Farrago’s servant, as their elected representative. The Captain finally convinced his Irish servant, who had far more brawn than brains, that he was better off as a servant of one man than as the servant of many.
A short time later, the Captain found the carcass of a very large owl. Upon taking it to a town, he met a philosopher who offered to have him made a member of the philosophical society on the basis of his discovery. When Captain Farrago refused, the philosopher asked if the servant Teague might be made a member. Once again, the Captain had to convince simple Teague that he was better off as a private servant than he would be chasing over the country after dangerous animals.
(The entire section is 1263 words.)
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