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The Plague of Mediocrity

Miss Jones, an elderly spinster, lived in a small Midwestern community. She had the distinction of being the oldest resident of the town. One day she died, and the editor of the local newspaper wanted to print a little caption commemorating Miss Jones's death.

However, the more he thought about it, the more he became aware that while Miss Jones had never done anything terribly wrong (she had never spent a night in jail or been drunk), yet she had never actually done anything noteworthy. While musing over this, the editor went down to have his morning coffee and met the owner of the tombstone establishment in the little community. The tombstone proprietor stated that he had been having the same problem. He wanted to put something on Miss Jones's tombstone besides just her birthday and death date, but he couldn't think of anything of significance that she had ever done.

The editor decided to go back to his office and assign to the first reporter he came across the task of writing up a small article suitable for both the paper and the tombstone. Upon returning to the office, the only fellow around was the sports editor, so he gave him the assignment.

They tell me if you pass through that little community you will find the following statement on her tombstone:

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Here lies the bones of Nancy Jones,
For her life held no terrors.
She lived an old maid.
She died an old maid.
No hits, no runs, no errors.