Gordon Brown was visiting a primary school in North Yorkshire where he
looked in on one of the classes.
They were in the middle of a discussion related to words and their
The teacher asked Mr. Brown if he would like to lead the discussion on
the word 'tragedy'.
So the illustrious leader asked the class for an example of a
A little boy stood up and offered: 'If my best friend, who lives on a
farm, is playing in the field & a tractor runs over him and kills him,
that would be a 'tragedy.'
No,' said Brown........' that would be an accident.'
A little girl raised her hand: 'If a school bus carrying fifty children
drove over a cliff, killing everyone inside, that would be a tragedy'
'I'm afraid not,' explained Mr. Brown ' that's what we would call great
The room went silent. No other children volunteered. Gordon Brown
searched the room. 'Isn't there someone here who can give me an example
of a tragedy?'
Finally, at the back of the room, little Johnny raised his hand.
In a quiet voice he said: 'If A plane carrying you and Mr. Darling was
struck by a 'friendly fire' missile & blown to smithereens, that would
be a tragedy.'
'Fantastic!' exclaimed Brown. 'That's right. And can you tell me why
that would be tragedy?'
'Well,' says little Johnny 'it has to be a tragedy, because it certainly
wouldn't be a great loss and it probably wouldn't be a friggin accident