The Man, His Son, and His Ass

44. THE MAN, HIS SON AND HIS ASS. A man and his son were leading their ass to market. A girl, seeing them, cried, "Why walk when you can ride?" On hearing this, the man set his son upon the ass.
Going further, they heard an old man say, "Shame for the young to ride while old people walk!" Thereupon the man made his son get down and rode himself.
Presently they met some women who cried, "Look at the poor tired son and lazy father!" Hearing this, the man took his son up beside him and so they rode into the town.
There a young man called to them, "Two men on one beast! It seems to me you are more fit to carry the ass than he is to carry you." Then they got down, tied the beast's legs to a pole, and carried him thus till they came to a bridge.
As they went, the children shouted so loudly that the ass took fright, kicked his legs free, and jumped over the bridge into the river. Thus having lost his ass, the man went home, crying, "Try to please everybody and you will please nobody, not even yourself!" [more info]

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