时间:2024-05-30 12:15:14 美文欣赏 投诉 投稿





  Three centuries later, shortly before the birth of Christ, Egypt was still ruled by a living goddess, Cleopatra, a Greek descended from one of Alexander's generals. She looked back to the Golden Age of Alexander's world empire and was determined to do even better herself.

  Alexander died at the age of 32. By the time Cleopatra was 23, she had gone ever further than Alexander making her entrance into Rome as Queen of Egypt and consort of Julius Caesar, the most powerful man in the world.

  These were complex times. To keep your throne, you had to be adaptable, ruthless, intelligent and a great politician. Cleopatra had all these traits which is why history has provided us with lots of interpretations of Cleopatra. Renaissance poets saw her as a heroine dying for love. And painters alluded to her eroticism in their bare breasted portrayals of the dying queen. Hollywood reinforced the image of Cleopatra as a vamp starting with Theda Bara's seductive portrayal in 1917.

  But who was the real Cleopatra? What did she really look like?

  We're in Berlin because this is the best portrait of Cleopatra in the world. There are very few ancient sculptures that are existing. So this is probably as close as we're ever going to get to how she really looked. She's rather plain looking, isn't she? Look at her hair. It's tied up in a simple bun. It's a classical Greek hairstyle. It's practical but not exactly designed to captivate a Roman general.

  We know from ancient sources that her hair was a reddish color, wavy. But look at her nose. It's a little bit too long and hooked at the end. And her mouth, is not exactly sensual. She's not wearing any jewelry. There are no earrings, no necklace. This is not the portrait of a femme fatale.

  The ancient sources tell us she was intelligent, witty, charming, a linguist and along with this, she had a tremendous determination. It was this amazing combination of abilities that made Cleopatra the most famous woman in history. It wasn't her beauty.

  Women in Egypt had always been powerful: Queen Hatshepsut, Nefertiti and now Cleopatra. But during the era of the Ptolemy's, the role of Greek women had changed. They gained an identity apart from that of their husbands or families. Women participated in the arts and civic life and marriage became a union of two people, not just two houses. The portraits of the women of this period show strong individuals looking back at you with confidence. They're almost haunting. Women would not have this power again until the 20th century. Cleopatra was well educated, strong minded with ideas of her own and a female.

  As a intellectual, Cleopatra would have been heartbroken: when during fighting between Egyptians and Caesar's Roman troops, there occurred one of the greatest tragedies of the ancient world - the burning of the library of Alexandria. It's sad to think about what was lost in the fire at Alexandria. There are the missing manuscripts of Aristotle and Plato. They were probably there. There was an entire room with editions of Homer. Maybe even there were early manuscripts of the Old Testament, which could probably help settle Biblical questions today.

  Cleopatra was eventually able to replace 200,000 of the manuscripts. Books were very important to her. It's ironic that today everybody knows her for her beauty, but it was her intelligence that was most important asset she had.


  Time is running out for my friend. While we are sitting at lunch she casually mentions she and her husband are thinking of starting a family. "We're taking a survey,"she says, half-joking. "Do you think I should have a baby?"

  "It will change your life," I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral2. "I know,"she says, "no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous3 holidays..."

  But that's not what I mean at all. I look at my friend, trying to decide what to tell her. I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes. I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional4 wound so raw5 that she will be vulnerable6 forever.

  I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without thinking: "What if that had been MY child?" That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her. That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die. I look at her carefully manicured7 nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated8 she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive9 level of a bear protecting her cub10.

  I feel I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed11 by motherhood. She might arrange for child care, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting, and she will think her baby's sweet smell. She will have to use every ounce of discipline12 to keep from running home, just to make sure her child is all right.

  I want my friend to know that every decision will no longer be routine. That a five-year-old boy's desire to go to the men's room rather than the women's at a restaurant will become a major dilemma. The issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester13 may be lurking14 in the lavatory15. However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess16 herself constantly17 as a mother.

  Looking at my attractive friend, I want to assure her that eventually18 she will shed the added weight19 of pregnancy20, but she will never feel the same about herself. That her own life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. She would give it up in a moment to save her offspring21, but will also begin to hope for more years—not to accomplish her own dreams—but to watch her children accomplish theirs.

  I want to describe to my friend the exhilaration22 of seeing your child learn to hit a ball. I want to capture23 for her the belly laugh24 of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog for the first time. I want her to taste the joy that is so real it hurts.

  My friend's look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes. "You'll never regret it," I say finally. Then, squeezing25 my friend's hand, I offer a prayer for her and me and all of the mere mortal women who stumble26 their way into this holiest of callings.


  A good book may be among the best of friends.(a good book is like our best friend) It is the same today that it always was, and it will never change. It is the most patient and cheerful of companions. It does not turn its back upon us (abandon) in times of adversity or distress.(in times of misfortunes or poverty) It always receives us with the same kindness,amusing and instructing us in youth, and comforting and consoling us in age.(in old age)


  Men often discover their affinity (close relationship) to each other by the love they have each for a book --- just as two persons sometimes discover a friend by the admiration which both have for a third. There is an old proverb, “Love me, and love my dog.” But there is more wisdom in this:” Love me, love my book.” The book is a truer and higher bond of union. (uniting force) Men can think, feel, and sympathize (share the feelings or ideas of another) with each other through their favorite author. They live in him together, and he (lives) in them. ---they can find their opinions from books, in reverse, the ideas of the author influence them too.


  “Books,” said Hazlitt,“Wind into the heart; the poet‘s verse slides in the current of our blood. We read them when young, we remember them when old. We feel that it has happened to ourselves. They are to be very cheap and good. We breathe but the air of books.”


  A good book is often the best urn (a vase with foot and round body, especially as anciently for storing ashes of the dead. 有腳之圓形缸,古時以此缸盛人屍體之骨殖。) of a life enshrining (inclosing or preserving as in shrine. 保而藏之(如帝王駕崩,高僧圓寂之後,藏其遺骸於神龕中).) the best that life could think out; for the world of a man‘s life is, for the most part, but the world of his thoughts. Thus the best books are treasuries (a place where valuable things are kept. ) of good words, the golden (precious, excellent) thoughts, which, remembered and cherished, become our constant companions and comforters (a thing that gives comfort). “They are never alone,” said Sir Philip Sidney, “that are accompanied by noble thoughts.”


  The good and true thought may in times of temptation (lure) be as an angel of mercy purifying and guarding the soul. It also enshrines the germs of action, for good words almost always inspire to good works.


  Books possess an essence of immortality (the nature of endless life). They are by far the most lasting products of human effort. Temples and statues decay (rot), but books survive. Time is of no account (of no importance ) with great thoughts, which are as fresh today as when they first passed through their author‘s minds, ages ago. What was then said and thought still speaks to us as vividly as ever from the printed page. The only effect of time has been to sift out (make sth bad away) the bad products; for nothing in literature can long survive but what is really good.


  Books introduce us into the best society they bring us into the presence of the greatest minds that have ever lived. We hear what they said and did; we see them as if they were really alive; we sympathize with them, enjoy with them, grieve with them; their experience becomes ours, and we feel as if we were in a measure (in some degree ) actors with them in the scenes which they describe.


  The great and good do not die even in this world. Embalmed (Spring embalms the woods and fields.春天使森林和田野吐露芬芳。) in books, their spirits walk abroad. The book is a living voice. It is an intellect to which one still listens. Hence we ever remain under the influence of the great men of old. The imperial intellects of the world are as much alive now as they were ages ago.



  People born in the autumn live longer than those born in the spring and are less likely to fall chronically ill when they are older, according to an Austrian scientist. Using census data for more than one million people in Austria, Denmark and Australia, scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in the northern German town of Rostock found the month of birth was related to life expectancy over the age of 50. Seasonal differences in what mothers ate during pregnancy, and infections occurring at different times of the year could both have an impact on the health of a new-born baby and could influence its life expectancy in older age. "A mother giving birth in spring spends the last phase of her pregnancy in winter, when she will eat less vitamins than in summer," said Gabriele Doblhammer, one of a team of scientists who carried out the research. "When she stops breast-feeding and starts giving her baby normal food, it’s in the hot weeks of summer when babies are prone to infections of the digestive system." In Austria, adults born in autumn (October-December) lived about seven months longer than those born in spring (April-June), and in Denmark adults with birthdays in autumn outlived those born in spring by about four months. In the southern hemisphere, the picture was similar. Adults born in the Australian autumn - the European spring - lived about four months longer than those born in the Australian spring. The study focused on people born at the beginning of the 20th century, using death certificates and census data. Although nutrition at all times of the year has improved since then, the seasonal pattern persists, Doblhammer said.




  Eternal love between us two, Shall withstand the HOUSE apart.



  小编表示感动:有情饮水饱,不是每个人都能做到啊。当爱情迎头撞上不解风情的冰冷现实,多少人能真的坚持到最后呢?在这个美好的节日,还是叮嘱大家一句,hold fast to love,for when love dies,life is a broken-winged bird,that can never fly (看多少人能猜出这几句话的原版~)



  英语美文 最幸福的时刻

  In Life We Are Happiest When…


  A man and his girlfriend were married. It was a large celebration.


  All of their friends and family came to see the lovely ceremony and to partake of the festivities and celebrations. All had a wonderful time.


  The bride was gorgeous in her white wedding gown and the groom was very dashing in his black tuxedo. Everyone could tell that the love they had for each other was true.


  A few months later, the wife came to the husband with a proposal, "I read in a magazine, a while ago, about how we can strengthen our marriage," she offered. "Each of us will write a list of the things that we find a bit annoying with the other person. Then, we can talk about how we can fix them together and make our lives happier together."


  The husband agreed. So each of them went to a separate room in the house and thought of the things that annoyed them about the other. They thought about this question for the rest of the day and wrote down what they came up with.


  The next morning, at the breakfast table, they decided that they would go over their lists.


  "I'll start," offered the wife. She took out her list. It had many items on it, enough to fill 3 pages. In fact, as she started reading the list of the little annoyances, she noticed that tears were starting to appear in her husband's eyes.


  "What's wrong?" she asked. "Nothing," the husband replied, "keep reading your list."


  The wife continued to read until she had read all three pages to her husband. She neatly placed her list on the table and folded her hands over the top of it.


  "Now, you read your list and then we'll talk about the things on both of our lists," she said happily.


  Quietly the husband stated, "I don't have anything on my list. I think that you are perfect the way that you are. I don't want you to change anything for me. You are lovely and wonderful and I wouldn't want to try and change anything about you."


  The wife, touched by his honesty and the depth of his love for her and his acceptance of her, turned her head and wept.


  In life, there are enough times when we are disappointed, depressed and annoyed. We don't really have to go looking for them. We have a wonderful world that is full of beauty, light and promise. Why waste time in this world looking for the bad, disappointing or annoying when we can look around us, and see the wondrous things before us?



  Dear son...


  The day that you see me old and I am already not, have patience and try to understand me …


  If I get dirty when eating… if I can not dress… have patience.

  Remember the hours I spent teaching it to you.




  If, when I speak to you, I repeat the same things thousand and one

  times… do not interrupt me… listen to me



  When you were small, I had to read to you thousand and one times the same story until you get to sleep…

  When I do not want to have a shower, neither shame me nor scold me…



  Remember when I had to chase you with thousand excuses I invented, in order that you wanted to bath…

  When yousee my ignorance on new technologies… give me the necessary time and not look at me with your

  mocking smile…



  I taught you how to do so many things… to eat good, to dress well… to confront life…



  When at some moment I lose the memory or the thread of our

  conversation… let me have the necessary time to remember… and if I cannot do it,

  do not become nervous… as the most important thing is not my

  conversation but surely to be with you and to have you listening to me…





  If ever I do not want to eat, do not force me. I know well when I need

  to and when not.



  When my tired legs do not allow me walk...


  … give me your hand… the same way I did when you gave your first steps.



  And when someday I say to you that I do not want to live any more…

  that I want to die… do not get angry… some day you will understand…



  Try to understand that my age is not lived but survived.


  Some day you will discover that, despite my mistakes, I always wanted

  the best thing for you and that I tried to prepare the way for you..




  You must not feel sad, angry or impotent for seeing me near you. You

  must be next to me, try to understand me and to help me as I did it when

  you started living.

  Help me to walk… help me to end my way with love and patience. I will

  pay you by a smile and by the immense love I have had always for you.





  I love you son…


  Your father



  Many people think that when they become rich and successful,happiness will naturally follow.Let me tell you that nothing is further from the truth.The world is full of very rich peoplewho are as miserable as if they were living in hell.We have read stories about movie stars who committed suicide or died from drugs.Quite clearly,money is not the only answer to all problems.Wealth obtained through dishonest means does not bring happiness.Lottery winnings do not bring happiness.Gamble winnings do not bring happiness.To my mind,the secret to happiness lies in your successful work,There is no use sayingin your contribution towards others’ happinessand in your wealth you have earned through your own honest effort.If you obtain wealth through luck or dishonest means,you will know that it is ill earned money.If you get your money by taking advantage of others or by hurting others,you will not be happy with it.You will think you are a base person.Long—term happiness is based on honesty,productive work,contribution,and self—esteem.Happiness is not an end; it is a process.It is a continuous process of honest,productive workwhich makes a real contribution to othersand makes you feel you are a useful,worthy person.As Dr.Wayne wrote,“There is no way to happiness.Happiness is the way.”There is no use saying“Some day when I achieve these goals,when I get a car,build a house and own my own business,then I will be really happy.”Life just does not work that way.If you wait for certain things to happenand depend on external circumstances of life to make you happy,you will always feel unfulfilled.There will always be something missing.


  Tall Corn

  Jim Carlton sat by his kitchen window. He gazed across the hot afternoon at the corn that grew like a rising hedge around his single-story Iowa farmhouse. This year"s crop had jumped up tall and early. Now, only the corn that crowded around the edge of the home site was visible from the house.

  His wife, Sue, stood at the sink washing fresh-picked carrots with a dribble of cold water. She eyed the sky uneasily as she worked, willing a cloud to appear. It had been twenty-seven days since the last rainfall, and that, to use Jim"s words, had been hardly enough to knock the fuzz off a dandelion.

  Jim sighed, looking at the blank, blue sky. "It"s been too long. We"re going to start losing corn pretty soon. And there"s not a dang thing anyone can do about it except look for clouds and watch the leaves go soft..." He paused. "But then, I guess worrying doesn"t help any. Just makes you see things worse than they really are."

  Sue Carlton, a strong-looking woman in her early forties, set the carrots in the sink and dried her hands. She walked over to her husband who sat in a wheelchair, one leg extended forward. A month ago, Jim had been repairing the roof of the barn when a board gave way. Along with shattered bones, the X rays had shown damage to his spine. Just how much damage, and whether Jim would ever walk again, the doctors couldn"t yet say.

  Sue perched on the arm of a chair and stroked the side of Jim"s neck. "I reckon you"re right about worrying," she said. She looked down at him. "Sometimes I think the drought"s harder on the farmers than it is on the crops."

  She looked out the window at her garden. They had talked about letting part of the vegetable garden go dry, or selling some of the animals, but so far there seemed to be enough well water for their own use. There just wasn"t enough for three hundred acres of corn.

  She bent down and kissed his head. "We"ll be okay," she said quietly.

  The days rolled on and on, same after same like crystal-clear beads on a string; early heat, dry winds and spotless skies of beautiful heartbreaking blue. Leaf edges began to brown and curl on the corn that hedged the Carltons" yard.

  One day in mid-July, Jim called to his wife as she came in from the garden. He told her he had just been on the phone with their neighbor Pappy Dickson. Pappy"s crop was failing; he couldn"t see any ears at all and even the stalks were turning brown.

  "Pappy says he"s going to start plowing his corn under if it doesn"t rain by the end of the week," Jim said in a worried voice.

  "Plowing it in?" Sue stared at Jim.

  "Sounds like it. I think the worry must be getting to him. What he says is impossible. We all planted the same seed at about the same time, and it looks to me like the corn"s holding up pretty good."

  A few days later, Sue returned from a trip to town. Jim heard the screen door slap behind her but didn"t call a greeting. She came into the room, her eyes questioning. Jim was sitting there as cool as a handful of rose petals, a big smile on his face. She set down her packages.

  "Don"t tell me," she said. "There"s a rainstorm coming!"

  "Better than that! Doc Henderson called, says the new X rays look good, real good - a lot better than he expected." Jim paused and his smile grew wider. "He figures I could be walking by September."

  "Walking...?" She looked straight into her husband"s eyes. "He figures you"ll be able to walk?" She reached down and held his face in both hands. "That"s the best news you could have given me!" she said, laughing. She jumped up and twirled a few times around the room, hugging herself with happiness.

  "Better than a rainstorm?"

  "Oh, honey! A hundred times better," she laughed and fell into a chair beside him.

  "You know," he said, reaching out and touching her arm, "a month ago I couldn"t believe how our life was going. I figured maybe we were praying in the wrong direction or something. Then along comes the good news, and suddenly the drought hardly seems worth worrying about."

  "Well, that"s good. Then I don"t need to keep sneaking out at night to water." Sue lifted her head and looked in Jim"s eyes.

  "The garden?"

  "The garden and all the corn you can see from this house."

  "Corn?" Jim stared at her.

  "What else could I do?" Sue smiled. "You said it yourself, worrying doesn"t help any. It just makes you see things worse than they really are."


  I used to watch her from my kitchen window, she seemed so small as she muscled her way through the crowd of boys on the playground. The school was across the street from our home and I would often watch the kids as they played during recess. A sea of children, and yet to me, she stood out from them all. I remember the first day I saw her playing basketball. I watched in wonder as she ran circles around the other kids. She managed to shoot jump shots just over their heads and into the net. The boys always tried to stop her but no one could. I began to notice her at other times, basketball in hand, playing alone. She would practice dribbling and shooting over and over again, sometimes until dark. One day I asked her why she practiced so much. She looked directly in my eyes and without a moment of hesitation she said, “I want to go to college. The only way I can go is if I get a scholarship. I like basketball. I decided that if I were good enough, I would get a scholarship. I am going to play college basketball. I want to be the best. My Daddy told me if the dream is big enough, the facts don’t count.” Then she smiled and ran towards the court to recap the routine I had seen over and over again. Well, I had to give it to her—she was determined. I watched her through those junior high years and into high school. Every week, she led her varsity team to victory.

  One day in her senior year, I saw her sitting in the grass, head cradled in her arms. I walked across the street and sat down in the cool grass beside her. Quietly I asked what was wrong. “Oh, nothing,” came a soft reply. “I am just too short.” The coach told her that at 5’5” she would probably never get to play for a top ranked team— much less offered a scholarship—so she should stop dreaming about college. She was heartbroken and I felt my own throat tighten as I sensed her disappointment. I asked her if she had talked to her dad about it yet. She lifted her head from her hands and told me that her father said those coaches were wrong. They just did not understand the power of a dream. He told her that if she really wanted to play for a good college, if she truly wanted a scholarship, that nothing could stop her except one thing — her own attitude. He told her again, “If the dream is big enough, the facts don’t count.” The next year, as she and her team went to the Northern California Championship game, she was seen by a college recruiter. She was indeed offered a scholarship, a full ride, to a Division 1, NCAA women’s basketball team. She was going to get the college education that she had dreamed of and worked toward for all those years.


  What makes you happy all the time? What do you do when you feel like having a bad day?



  David Leonhardt

  Being at peace with myself, just knowing that I am doing , thinking how lucky I am for the incredible bounty I was born into…it’s not one thing, it’s an attitude.


  Jennifer Walpole

  Books. Books always make me happy when I’m having a bad day. And, while I do enjoy e-books, I love the print versions. There is something intensely satisfying about actually turning the page of a book. I like all genres of books; my favorites are sci-fi and adventure. I also turn to music to bolster my happiness. Josh Groban is a favorite. Most of the time, I have music playing in the background as I’m working. The most simplistic thing that I do when I need to feel happy is count my blessings; even when it seems like the world is crashing down, there is always something to be thankful for.


  Nikola Gjakovski

  Knowing that today I’m closer to my goal than yesterday brings me happiness. The things that make me a better person than I was yesterday, the virtues that we sshare between us. Also the small things such as hearing someone snort when they laugh, seeing people do good deeds, when I nail a performance I was nervous about, when my pet chooses to sleep next to me at night, when I see old couples still in love, eating a watermelon on a hot summer day, licking the spoon after baking, summer evening walks, realizing I’ve finished all my work for the day and lot of others. Minimize your satisfaction of happiness, but never minimize your goals and attainments. We all strive for happiness but only few find it.

  知道今天比昨天更接近目标能让我开心。那些让今天的我比昨天更好的事情,那些我们彼此分享的美德。还有一些小事:比如听到别人扑哧一笑的声音 ,看到别人做好事,为一次表演紧张到无法自拔,或者是宠物晚上睡在我旁边,看到老年伴侣依然相亲相爱,炎热的夏季夜晚吃一个大西瓜,烘烤完舔一舔勺子,夏季傍晚的散步,意识到我已经完成了自己一天的工作顺带帮别人完成了不少。把你对幸福感的满意度降到最低,但不要降低你的目标和成就。我们都在追求幸福,却只有很少人能真正找寻到。

  Ieva Salina

  The life itself. Moments when you feel everything is connected. that you are a creator. You have choice what to be, how to feel, what to think and say. Being in nature where everything is in harmony and step by step create harmony within and around. Those little moments which are filled with faith, love, joy and success gives strength and encourage to move forward, to your goals. Everything and anything is possible.


  Kara Spain

  What makes me most happy is what comes from within myself or simply being me without false pretenses. It is a byproduct of living my purpose; being a writer, loving my family, and helping those in need when fate brings them along. That is who I am naturally, and when I cede to those things I feel most happy and alive as a human being.


  Chris Haigh

  The big stuff that brings me happiness are things like taking slow but steady steps towards goals, dreams, and ambitions that I want to achieve and feel ever more confident and hopeful in achieving.


  I have to be honest, though; sometimes happiness really is about the little things we do and we have. It doesn’t have to be big, but if they make you happy, on a small but regular basis, then that makes them no less valid as sources of happiness. For me, it’s silly little things like gelato in the sun or reading books inside while it’s raining outside, or afternoon naps, or writing a great to-do list or playing with my dog.


  Happiness is a choice and a goal and anyway you choose to achieve it is valid and something you should striving to fill your life with.


  robbie hyman

  Believe it or not, gratitude makes me happy.


  Sounds counterintuitive, doesn’t it? Seems like it should work in exactly the opposite direction. First we get happy, then we can be grateful about it.


  The more time during your day you can spend being grateful about the things and the people and the experiences and the luck you have in your life, the happier you’ll be. I promise. I also promise that if you try, really try, to think about all of the reasons you have to be grateful today, right now, you’ll find an astonishingly long list.


  I remember my first condo. Tiny place, but it was all mine. And I’m not sure where I got the idea to do this, but I made a point — from the day I moved in — to walk into every room in the place, just to take a few seconds to reflect on the fact that I actually owned this room… and this one… that one too.


  Like I said, tiny place, so walking into each room wasn’t exactly a major physical task. But it worked. Because I made feeling grateful for that condo a part of my daily routine, I was a lot happier about it than I suspect most people are about their homes — even if they’re a lot bigger than that condo was.


  Find gratitude to find happiness. It works. In that order. I promise.


  Royale Scuderi

  A genuine smile, a comforting hug, a kind word, the comforts of home, real and deep affection are all triggers for happiness, or at least for happy moments. But what truly brings me happiness is a contentment that comes from inside that I matter to those around me, that I’m contributing something to the world. I think for me, happiness comes both from within and from without; it’s a connection to other people, and a sense that all is OK, even in the midst of the uncertainty that surrounds us, that life is still hopeful and good and joyous.


  Happiness may be more than anything an attitude or more accurately a mindset, a willingness to look for the good in life and to fully embrace and appreciate it when you find it.



  How a Simple Idea Became a Huge Business



  By Howard Schultz


  [1]When I was a child growing up in public-housing projects in Canarsie, Brooklyn, I remember lying in bed at night thinking: what if I had a crystal ball and could see the future? But I quickly shut out the thought. I realized I didn 8217;t know what I wanted to do with my life. All I knew was I had to get out of the projects, get out of Brooklyn.


  [2]I was fortunate to go to college, but I didn 8217;t know what to do next. I had no mentor to help me sort out my options . My main goal was to escape the struggles my working-class parents lived with every day.


  [3]Eventually I discovered I had a talent for sales, and was hired by a Swedish housewares corporation. By age 28, I was vice president in charge of sales in the United States. I had an excellent salary and a co-op apartment in New York City, and was happily married to a beautiful woman, Sheri. My parents couldn 8217;t believe I had come so far so fast. The life I was leading was beyond their best dreams for me.

  [3]我发现自己善于推销,便进入了一家瑞典人开的家庭用品公司工作。我表现出色,28岁就晋升为主管国内销售的副总裁,薪金优厚。我买了套住宅,又娶了如花似玉的妻子 8211;雪瑞,生活舒适愉快。连我的父母都不敢相信我会如此飞黄腾达。他们从未梦想过我能过上这样的生活。

  [4]Most people would be satisfied with all this. But I was getting antsy . I wanted to be in charge of my own destiny . It was around this time, in the early 1980s, that I became aware of a strange phenomenon. A little retailer in Seattle was placing large orders for a drip coffee maker: a simple plastic cone set on a thermos . The company, Starbucks Coffee and Tea, had only four small stores, yet it was buying our product in quantities larger than Macy 8217;s was. Why was Seattle so taken with this coffee maker when the rest of the country was using electric coffee makers?

  [4]一般人有了如此成就,也许会志得意满,我却还想更上一层楼,决意要主宰自己的命运。就在这个时候(80年代初期),一个奇特现象引起了我的`注意。西雅图有家经营零售业的小公司向我们订购滴滤式咖啡壶。这家公司名叫 8221;明星咖啡连锁公司 8221;,只有4家小店,向我们买这种产品的数量却超过百货业巨擘梅西公司。当时美国各地普通使用电气咖啡壶。何以此器具在西雅图那么受欢迎?

  [5]I had to find out, so I went to Seattle.


  [6]Fresh Approach



  My grandparents believed you were either honest or you weren't. There was no in between. They had a simple motto hanging on their living-room wall: Life is like a field of newly fallen snow; where I choose to walk every step will show. They didn't have to talk about it--they demonstratedthe motto by the way they lived. They understood instinctively that integrity means having a personal standard of morality and ethics that does not sell out to expediency and that is not relative to the situation at hand. Integrity is an inner standard for judging your behavior.Unfortunately, integrity is in short supply today--and getting scarcer. But it is the real bottom line in every area of society.And it is something we must demand of ourselves.

  A good test for this value is to look at what I call the Integrity Trial, which consists of three key principles: Stand firmly for your convictions in the face of personal pressure.

  When you know you're right, you can't back down. Always give others credit that is rightfully theirs. Don't be afraid of those who might have a better idea or who might even be smarter than you are. Be honest and open about who you really are. People who lack genuine core values rely on external factors--their looks or status---in order to feel good about themselves. Inevitably they will do everything they can to preserve this facade,but they will do very little to develop their inner value and personal growth.

  So be yourself. Don't engage in a personal cover-up of areas that are unpleasing in your life. When it's tough, do it tough. In other words, face reality and be adult in your responses to life's challenges.

  Self-respect and a clear conscience are powerful components of integrity and are the basis for enriching your relationships with others.

  Integrity means you do what you do because it's right and not just fashionable or politically correct. A life of principle, of not succumbing to the seductive sirens of an easy morality,will always win the day. My grandparents taught me that.


  2.The Necktie through Thick and Thin

  From hat to shoes,men's clothes are useful.Only one piece of clothing is worn just for decoration.It is the necktie,or cravat.The necktie is left over from the time when men wore ruffles,ribbons,and tassels.

  Beau Brummel was an Englishman of the early 1800's.He was famous for his fancy clothes.The story is told that he used to invite guests just to watch him knot his white cravat.

  Now,perhaps,even the necktie is going out of style.It has been getting smaller and smaller for hundreds of years.It started out as a piece of lace and turned into a silk bow.Then it became a triangle that was tied around the neck.Now many neckties are no wider than a piece of string.






  What day is it today? Is it Tuesday or Thursday? This thought raced through her mind as she sat back with her studentsgoing over the lesson that never seemed to end. Didn’t I just do this yesterday? Or was it a year ago? Hell, everything seemed to jumble together anymore. "Miss Smith

  can I go to the bathroom?" Jorge asked, as he proceeded to jump from one foot to another, holding himself. How many times have I heard this? She wondered as she abruptly said, "Yes" and watched as he raced out of the room.

  Sitting at the table she gazed at her students while thinking of what she would do after work. Maybe I’ll go to the gym or stop at the market for something to eat tonight. Mechanically she continued with her lesson on the short letter "a" with her students. "The letter "a" makes what sound?" "a, a, a", the students sang together going through the empty motions. The clock dragged away the minutes teasing her with the tediousness of the day.

  Won’t it end? She thought as the phone rang out its morse code for her room. Sighing she stood up and walked through the maze of students desks to get to the phone. Picking up the receiver the other voice seemed a hundred miles away. Oh, how I wish I were anywhere but here. Here mind wandered to the hot exotic beach of Cabo, Mexico, where she had spent her last summer break. She still remembered the cool breezes that caressed her skin as she lay on the gritty sand.

  "Miss Smith did you hear me?" the secretary annoyingly asked her. "Oh, sorry. What did you say?" "Can you send Carla to the office?" the secretary impatiently asked. "Oh, course" she replied as she hung up the phone. She turned from the phone and yelled out Carla’s name. Carla, who was one of the many who always seemed so needy that were in her class this year. Carla looked up from her desk, her hair hanging like a matted displaced doll. Her face was lined with dirt that gave her the appearance of one of those munchkins from the Wizard of Oz. "You need to go to the office", she said while Carla slowly rose from her desk. "Why do I have to go?" whined Carla. "It’s between you and the office—just go up" she hastily turned her back as Carla walked out of the room. Like having free school uniforms is the answer. It would be nice if just once someone called saying something nice or thanking me for all the endless crap I have to deal with. With a sigh she walked back to her other students who were clustered at the back table patiently waiting her return.

  The rest of the afternoon blurred into one long endless repetition. Finally the bell rang as a relief. As she led her students out the door they walked behind her as baby chicks returning to their fold. She noticed that their mother hens clucked to them behind the iron gate. As she proceeded to walk down the corridor, the air, which rose with the musical tingle of Spanish coloring everything that touched it, greeted her. She watched with a touch of envy as the children left her to return to those homes that probably were filled with laughter and warmth while she would once again return to the same endless march of boredom.

  "Senora, un momento por favor" She turned her head and noticed the small shriveled man, his brown face lined with a map to places only he knew. "Thanks for helping my grandson Julio to read" the gentleman said in his faltering broken English. She immediately thought of Julio, who once as unreachable as a hardened walnut, slowly cracked opened to reveal the eager child inside. She thought of the inner struggle Julio must have had as he tried to make sense of the foreign letters and the sudden joy when he had unbroken the mysterious code. Was the grandfather the same? She looked up at this elderly gentleman, probably his grandfather, and quickly recognized the sameness of the two. "Gracias Senora" a weathered hand came out and firmly grasped hers with warmth that radiated from his soul to hers. Just as abruptly he removed his hand and left her. As he walked away she thought of that exotic sun and realized maybe it was closer to her than she thought.


  她坐在桌边,眼睛盯着学生,脑子里却在想,下了班该去哪里。也许该去健身,或者去市场买点东西晚上吃。她机械地上着课,给学生讲字母“a”。“‘a’怎么念?”“a, a, a”学生们齐声干巴巴地念着。时钟一分分过去,似乎在嘲笑她这沉闷的一天。






  Long, long ago, there was a good and honest man,whose name was Yohyo.He lived in a small village and worked as a woodcutter.

  One cold day in winter, when deep snow lay on the ground, Yohyo was returning home from his work in the forest. Over his shouider he carrid a sack of wood1, and as it was near evening and it was getting very cold, he hurried on across the snow-coverd fields. Suddenly he saw something black lying in the snow-something that moved and cried. He stopped, and putting down his sack, he went to see what it was. As he got near, the object in the snow cried again, and he could see that it was a crane-a large and beautiful bird with long legs.

  When the crane saw Yohyo coming closer, it struggled to rise and he could see that one of its wings was hurt.

  “You pour thing!” he cried. “Come2, let me help you. If you stay out here in the snow, you will die.”

  The crane stopped struggling and let Yohyo pick it up3. Gently and carefully, he stroked the crane’s feathers, and carrying it under one arm, he set off for home again.

  Yohyo was a kind man with a gentle heart and he felt sorry for the beautiful crane4. He looked after it until it was well again, and then he set it free to fly off into the sky.

  One night, afew days later, Yohyo heard someone knocking ant the door. When he opened the door, he found a women standing in the snow. By the light of his lamp, Yohyo could see that she was young and beautiful, and shaking with cold. Yohyo stared at her in surprise.

  “I have lost my way in the snow,” she said, in a sweet and gentle voice. “My I come into your house and stay for the night?”

  “Yes, yes, of course! Come in at once, out of the snow,” cried Yohyo.

  He build up the fire again with fresh wood, and brought the young woman rice an hot soup. Her name was Otsu and she was as king and gentle as Yohyo homself.

  The next day there was a storm and so Otsu stayed on at the house and Yohyo grew to love her. Otsu, also, loved him for his gentle heart, and soon they were married.

  Yohyo and Otsu were happy together, although Yohyo earned only a little money and they were very poor. One night, just before New Year’ Eve, they were sitting together as usual, when Otsu noticed that her husband was worrying about something.

  “My dear husband,” she said. “What are you worrying about? Please tell me.”

  “Well…” sighed Yohyo. “It is nearly New Year’ Eve, but I cannot make any preparation for the feast because I have no money. I have not even enough money to buy rice and cakes. How I wish I had some money…”

  Otsu listened to him silently.

  “Yohyo, I will weave for you,” she said. “You can take the cloth that I weave5 and sell it at the market to earn some money.”

  “But, please do not look into the other room, while I am working, promise me that you will not look in?”

  Yohyo promised, and Otsu went into the other room and began to weave some cloth. She was working for hours ang Yohyo get tired of waiting, but he was patient. At last Otsu came out with a piece of beautiful cloth in her hands. It was the most beautiful cloth that Yohyo had ever seen.

  The next morning he set off to the market in the town, and sold the piece of cloth for a lot of maney. Yohyo had never had so much money in his life. He was very excited and he bought many things with it. Soon, in his excitement, he had spent all the money, so he went home and asked Otsu to weave another piece of cloth. So greedy did he become, that he did not notice that the more she worked, the thinner Otsu became. However, as she loved Yoho very much, she wove new cloth for him every time he asked for it.

  One day Yohyo asked for some cloth once again, and Otsu said, as usual, “I will weave for you but remember your promise-don’t look into the other room while I am working.”

  Yohyo promised and sat down to wait but he soon got tierd of waiting for her. He could hear the sound of weaving, and he began to ask himself why he could not look in at Otsu, while she was working. Once he began to have doubts he could not stop himself from looking in.

  He thought, “Otsu won’t be angry with me if I look in only for a moment.”

  Finally, he could wait no longer. He crept to the entrance of the other room and looked in. Otsu was not there at all! Instead, he saw a very thin crane which wass pulling off its feathers and weaving them into the cloth. Yohyorecognised it as the very same crane whose life he saved so many months ago.

  He crept away again and sat thinking quietly. He felt very anxious-what would Otsu do, now that he knew her secret?

  At last the sound of weaving stopped, and Otsu came out of the roomwith two pieces of cloth in her hands.

  “Yohyo,” she said, sadly. “You have broken your promise to me. Now that you know that I am a crane, I cannot stay here any longer. Take these pieces of cloth, sell one, and keep the other. Perhaps it will remind you of me.”

  “Please Otsu, don’t leave me,” cried Yohyo. “How can I manage to live without you? I love you!”

  But Otsu only smiled gently and shook her head.

  “No, Yohyo,” she said.”I came here to reply you for your kindness to me, and I stayed for love of your gentle heart. But since I have been weaving for you, you have changed and become greedy and hard.”

  “I must go, goodbye.”

  “Don’t go, please, Otsu!” cried poor Yohyo. “Don’t leave me alone! I won’t tell your secret. Iwon’t ask you for any more cloth. Don’t go!”

  Otsu just smiled sadly again and waving goodbye, she stepped out of the door. At once she changed into a crane and opening her beautiful wings, she flew up into the sky. As Yohyo watched in despair, she rose higher and higher into the sky, until she could be seen no more.

  Then there was only the sound of Yohyo’ voice calling,”Otsu! Otsu!…”