Good Journalism

A young journalism graduate from Arkansas had gone to work for the New York Times. His first assignment was to write a brief human interest story. An idea came to him and he returned to one of the most remote areas he knew of in his home state of Arkansas.

Deep in the woods, he came upon a farmers house and decided this would be a good place to start.

He introduced himself to the back country farmer and explained why he was there. The farmer (named Farmer Mahon) agreed to answer his questions.

The reporter asked the farmer what event in his life had made him the happiest?

Farmer Mahon replied, “One time a neighbor lost one of his sheep. We all formed a posse and found it. After we all screwed it we took it back to the farmer that lost it.”

“I can’t print that,” said the reporter, “Is there another event that made you really happy?” Farmer Mahon thought for a minute and said, “Yep. One time the daughter of another local farmer got lost. She was a good-lookin’ young girl. We all formed a posse and found her. After all of us screwed her, we took her back to her daddy.”

Again the reporter knew he couldn’t print the story and decided to take a different tack. He asked Farmer Mahon, “Is there any event in your life that has made you really sad?”

Farmer Mahon hung his head and replied, “Well, I got lost once.”
Uploaded 03/25/2008
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