Wednesday, January 7, 2004

Those Wacky Puritans

In Benjamin Franklin's autobiography, he writes about how when he was seventeen he got into conflict with his brother and decided to leave town; however, because of his tendency to have argumentative debates about religion, and certain other liberal views, the town council and father were disposed against him, and would attempt to block any travel plans that he made openly. As such, he arranged with a friend to be smuggled to New York aboard a ship, and because it would be too scandelous to tell the captain that he was a bit liberal, they concocted a more acceptable excuse: "[I] had got a naughty Girl with Child, whose Friends would compel me to marry her, and therefore I could not appear or come away publickly."

Can you envision a modern version of such a story?

"Bobby, where have you been? It's almost 2AM!"
"I was at the Democratic National Convention."
"What!? How could you do something like that, you dirty boy?"
"Did I say Democratic National Convention? I meant to say that I was on the street corner, impregnating naughty Girls."
"Oh, okay, you should have just said so in the first place."

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