How to Win Friends and Influence People

Dale Carnegie

Change font size:smallmiddlebig

Within a minute’s walk of my house there was a wild stretch of virgin timber, where
the blackberry thickets foamed white in the springtime, where the squirrels nested and
reared their young, and the horseweeds grew as tall as a horse’s head. This unspoiled
woodland was called Forest Park - and it was a forest, probably not much different in
appearance from what it was when Columbus discovered America. I frequently walked
in this park with Rex, my little Boston bulldog. He was a friendly, harmless little hound;
and since we rarely met anyone in the park, I took Rex along without a leash or a
One day we encountered a mounted policeman in the park, a policeman itching to
show his authority.
“‘What do you mean by letting that dog run loose in the park without a muzzle and
leash?” he reprimanded me. “Don’t you know it’s against the law?”
“Yes, I know it is,” I replied softy, “but I didn’t think he would do any harm out here.”
"You didn’t think! You didn’t think! The law doesn’t give a tinker’s damn about what
you think. That dog might kill a squirrel or bite a child. Now, I’m going to let you off
this time; but if I catch this dog out here again without a muzzle and a leash, you’ll
have to tell it to the judge.”
I meekly promised to obey.
And I did obey - for a few times. But Rex didn’t like the muzzle, and neither did I; so
we decided to take a chance. Everything was lovely for a while, and then we struck a
snag. Rex and I raced over the brow of a hill one afternoon and there, suddenly - to my
dismay - I saw the majesty of the law, astride a bay horse. Rex was out in front, heading
straight for the officer.
I was in for it. I knew it. So I didn’t wait until the policeman started talking. I beat him