It was autumn, and members of a Native American tribe asked their new Chief if the coming winter was going to be cold or mild. Since he was a new Chief in a modern society and had never been taught the old secrets of Nature, he looked up at the sky and had no clue what to do. To play it safe, he replied to his tribe that the winter could definitely be cold and that they should collect firewood early, just to be prepared. So, the members began gathering wood.
Being a practical leader, he figured he should also use the resources available to the modern society. He went to the phone booth, called the National Weather Service and asked, "Will this winter be cold?"
"As of now, it looks like this winter is going to be quite cold," the forecaster said.
So the Chief went back to his tribe and told them to collect even more wood. A week later he called the National Weather Service again and asked for an update.
"Yes," the man at National Weather Service again replied, "based on incoming data, this winter is looking to be colder than we expected." The Chief was surprised, but again went back to his tribe, told them that this might be a very cold winter, and asked them to collect every scrap of wood they could find.
One week later, the Chief called the National Weather Service yet again, hoping for a new answer. "Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?"
"Positive," the man replied. "It's going to be one of the coldest winters ever."
"Really?" the shocked Chief exclaimed. "How can you be so sure?"
"First," the forecaster replied, "The Indians are collecting firewood like crazy."