The Ape and the Carpenter

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Once, an Ape was watching a Carpenter cut a wooden log into two. First the Carpenter put a small wedge into the crack of the log, to keep it open. When the crack was wide enough, he hammered in a large wedge and pulled the first one out.

At noon, the Carpenter went home for lunch. The Ape thought, ‘If the Carpenter can cut the wooden log, so can I!’

The Ape jumped and sat on the Carpenter’s bench. When he got ready to cut the log, his long tail slipped into the crack in the log.

The Ape did not notice this, but set to work. He put the first wedge in exactly as he had seen the Carpenter do it. But then he pulled it out before he had driven in the second one. The two sides of the log instantly sprang together. The Ape’s tail was caught between them.

The poor Ape cried out in pain. The Carpenter returned and laughed at the Ape. He said, “I am sure you now know what happens when you interfere in other people’s work.”

We should not interfere in other people’s work.

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