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款 待

  我是新澤西州大西洋城警察局的一名新警察。我被指派巡邏一條海濱的路線,幾乎每天都能碰上與父母走散的孩子。

  一天下午,我發現一個小孩獨自站在那裡,顯然是迷了路。我先是設法取得他的信任-我帶他到附近的冰淇淋攤給他買了一個蛋筒。過了很長時間,也沒看見他父母的影子,所以我就準備打電話叫輛巡邏車將他送回總部去。我告訴他站在那裡別動,我去電話亭打電話。當我回來時,卻發現他不知道到哪兒去了。

  警車很快來了。一名警察問我小孩在哪裡。我感覺自己傻極了,說自己弄丟了一個迷路的小孩,該多丟人啊!但我還是告訴了警察們所發生的一切,並描述了一下小孩的長相。「你請他吃了什麼?」一名警察問。

  「一個冰淇淋蛋筒。怎麼啦?」

  「因為,」那名警察說,「那個小孩住的地方離這兒只隔幾個街區。而你大概是新警察中幫他買東西吃的第五個傻瓜蛋!」

Treat

As a rookie in the Atlantic City, N.J., Police department, I was assigned a beat on the boardwalk. Hardly a day went by when I didn't come upon a child who had become separated from his parents.

One afternoon, I spotted a small boy standing alone, obviously lost. I tried to gain his confidence - I took him to the nearest ice-cream stand and bought him a cone. Time passed with no sign of the boy's parents, so the next step was to call for a patrol car to take him to headquarters. I told the small fry to stay put while I went to the call box. When I returned, he was nowhere in sight.

Within minutes, the car arrived, and one of the patrolmen asked me where the child was. I felt stupid; it's humiliating to say you've lost a lost child. But I told the officers what had happened and gave a description of the boy. "What did you treat him?" asked one of the men.

"An ice-cream cone. Why?"

"Because," answered the officer, "that kid lives only a few blocks from here, and you've about the fifth rookie he's conned for a treat!"