All the while the landlord stood in a corner and watched all that went on. He thought, ›Such cooking as that would make my inn prosper.‹
At night he took an old table from his lumber room, very like the joiner's table, and left it while the guest was sleeping in its place.
The next morning the joiner paid his reckoning, took up the table, not dreaming that he was carrying off the wrong one, and went on his way.
About noon he reached home and his father received him with great joy. »Now, my dear son, what have you learned?« said he to him. »I have learned to be a joiner, father,« he answered. »That is a good trade,« returned the father, »but what have you brought back with you from your travels?«—»The best thing I've got, father, is this little table,« said he. The tailor looked at it on all sides, and said, »You have certainly produced no masterpiece. It is a rubbish old table.«—»But it is a very wonderful one,« answered the son. »Let us invite all the friends and neighbors, that they may feast and enjoy themselves, for the table will provide enough for all.« When the company was all assembled he put his table in the middle of the room and said, »Table, be covered!« But the table never stirred and remained just as empty as any other table that does not understand talking. When the poor joiner saw that the table remained unfurnished he felt ashamed to stand there like a fool. The company laughed at him freely and were obliged to return unfilled and un-cheered to their houses. The father gathered his pieces together and returned to his tailoring, and the son went to work under another master.