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A shepherd was herding his flock in a remote pasture when suddenly a
brand-new BMW advanced out of a dust cloud towards him. The driver, a young
man in a Prada suit, Gucci shoes, Dior sunglasses and D+G tie, leans out the
window and asks the shepherd: "If I tell you exactly how many sheep you have
in your flock, will you give me one?"

The shepherd looks at the man, obviously a yuppie, then looks at his
peacefully grazing flock and calmly answers: "Sure. Why not?"

The yuppie parks his car, whips out his Dell notebook computer, connects it
to his AT&T cell phone, surfs to a NASA page on the internet, where he
calls up a GPS satellite navigation system to get an exact fix on his
location which he then feeds to another NASA satellite that scans the area
in an ultra-high-resolution photo.

The young man then opens the digital photo in Adobe Photoshop and exports it
to an image processing facility in Hamburg, Germany. Within seconds, he
receives an email on his Palm Pilot that the image has been processed and
the data stored. He then accesses a MS-SQL database through an ODBC
connected Excel spreadsheet with hundreds of complex formulae.

He uploads all of this data via an email on his Blackberry and, after a few
minutes, receives a response. Finally, he prints out a full-colour, 150-page
report on his hi-tech, miniaturised HP LaserJet printer, turns to the
shepherd and says: "You have exactly 1,586 sheep".

"That's right. Well, I guess you can take one of my sheep," says the
shepherd. He watches the young man select one of the animals and looks on
amused as the young man stuffs it into the boot of his car. Then the
shepherd says to the young man: "Hey, if I can tell you exactly what your
business is, will you give me back my sheep?"

The young man thinks about it for a second and then says: "Okay, why not?".
"You're a consultant," says the shepherd. "Wow! that's correct," says the
yuppie. "But how did you guess that?" "No guessing required," answers the
shepherd. "You showed up here even though nobody called you, you want to
get paid for an answer I already knew to a question I never asked, and you
know nothing about my business.

"Now give me back my dog."
By netchicken: posted on 2-2-2004

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