There was a man by the name of Gwilym who had the loudest voice in the world. It was so loud that when he spoke foghorns broke or fled. So he decided to become a librarian. Never let it be said that the quiet ones are the strangest of all! Gwilym wore a top hat and carried a pocket watch even though he lived in the 21st Century.

A foghorn that was braver than others of his kind went to pay Gwilym a visit at work on the pretext of borrowing a book on acoustics. When he passed Gwilym’s desk, the foghorn couldn’t resist a gibe, saying, “When you speak I can hear you ten miles away!”

“People have told me that before,” said Gwilym.

“In fact,” corrected the foghorn, “I can hear you fifty miles away.”

“I don’t doubt it,” replied Gwilym.

The foghorn said, “I’m not being perfectly candid. When you speak I can hear you two hundred miles away.”

“Tell me something new,” sighed Gwilym.

The foghorn began to grow exasperated. “Look here, I might as well be honest and say that when you speak in a whisper I can hear you clearly more than one thousand miles away!”

“Yes, yes, that doesn’t surprise me in the least!”

The foghorn made one final attempt to insult the librarian. “You ought to know the full truth of the matter. Even when you just move your lips silently, I can hear you at a distance of 24,000 miles. How about that? I bet nobody ever told you that before?”

“True,” concurred Gwilym, then he leaned forward and added, “but that’s much less impressive; and in fact it suggests you might be hard of hearing. You see, I’m standing at that exact distance from you right now. It’s the circumference of the Earth!”

The foghorn left the library in shame. It forgot to bring the borrowed book back in time and was fined.

¶ Never forget that planets are round.