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Eat up

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  • Lobster
    Long ago in China, there lived a very rich lord. His house and garden were famous throughout the land for their grandeur and beauty. His clothes were so fine
    Message 1 of 1 , May 3, 2000
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      Long ago in China, there lived a very rich lord. His
      house
      and garden were famous throughout the land for their
      grandeur and beauty. His clothes were so fine that, as
      he
      walked by, people gasped in wonder.
      You might think that such a wealthy man would spare a
      thought now and again for others less fortunate than
      himself.
      He might, perhaps, have given alms to the poor, or
      helped
      the orphan children of the town. But no, he preferred to
      do
      nothing at all.

      This meant he was often very bored so he spent his time
      trying to think of new ways to amuse himself. And one
      day,
      he decided to play a trick on Nasrudin. For he knew that
      the
      mullah blamed him for being selfish and lazy, and he
      wanted
      above all to make Nasrudin look foolish.

      He sent his servants out to buy a great many large,
      sweet
      melons. Then he invited a large number of people to a
      feast
      -- including, of course, Nasrudin.


      When the guests were seated, the servants brought in the
      melons, and the rich man urged them to eat. "Eat your
      fill,
      friends!" he said. "There is plenty more."

      The guests needed no encouragement. They did not often
      have a feast such as this, and they were determined to
      make
      the most of it.

      II-
      As they ate, the heaps of melon skins grew taller on
      each
      plate. Surreptitiously, the rich man (who had eaten more
      than anyone else) slipped all his melon skins onto
      Nasrudin's
      plate.
      When all the melons were eaten, the guests sat back,
      patting their stomachs, satisfied with their meal.
      The rich man looked around the table and smiled. This
      was
      the moment for his joke.

      "Look!" he cried, pointing to Nasrudin's plate and the
      enormous pile of melon peels. "This man is the greediest
      person here -- though he teaches us to be generous and
      kind!
      Yet he goes and eats more melons than the rest of us put
      together! What a glutton!"

      Everyone began to laugh -- even the Mullah. But as the
      laughter died away, Nasrudin said quietly:

      "But glutton as I may be, I am not the worst one here.
      For
      look, 1 have eaten only the fruit, and I have left the
      peels
      uneaten. But our host here -- he's eaten everything --
      peels
      and all!"

      And the rich man hung his head in shame.
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