Las Citas de la Semana

"No puede decir que lo haya comprendido todo. Probablemente, ahora está más confuso que nunca. Pero todos esos momentos que ha contemplado... algo ha sucedido. Los momentos parecen cosas físicas en su mente, como piedras. Al arrodillarse, acercándose a la más cercana, pasando su mano por ella, descubre que es suave y está ligeramente fría.

Comprueba el peso de la piedra; ve que puede levantarla, y también las otras. Puede colocarlas juntas para crear unos cimientos, un dique, un castillo.

Para construir un castillo del tamaño adecuado necesitará muchas piedras. Pero con lo que tiene ya, parece un comienzo aceptable."


lunes, 14 de diciembre de 2009

How to be an Alien: Tea

George Mikes

The trouble with tea is that originally it was quite a good drink.

So a group of the most eminent British scientists put their heads together, and made complicated biological experiments to find a way of spoiling it.

To the eternal glory of British science their labour bore fruit. They suggested that if you do not drink it clear, or with lemon or rum and sugar, but pour a few drops of cold milk into it, and no sugar at all, the desired object is achieved. Once this refreshing, aromatic, oriental beverage was successfully transformed into colourless and tasteless gargling-water, it suddenly became the national drink of Great Britain and Ireland - still retaining, indeed usurping, the high-sounding title of tea.

There are some occasions when you must not refuse a cup of tea, otherwise you are judged an exotic and barbarous bird without any hope of ever being able to take your place in civilised society.

If you are invited into an English home, at five o'clock in the morning you get a cup of tea. It is either brought in by a heartily smiling hostess or an almost malevolently silent maid. When you are disturbed in your sweetest morning sleep you must not say: "Madame (or Mabel), I think you are a cruel, spiteful and malignant person who deserves to be shot." On the contrary, you have to declare with your best five o'clock smile: "Thank you so much. I do adore a cup of early morning tea, especially early in the morning." If they leave you alone with the liquid, you may pour it down the washbasin.

Then you have tea for breakfast; then you have tea at 11 o'clock in the morning; then after lunch; then you have tea for tea; then after supper; and again at 11 o'clock at night.

You must not refuse additional cups of tea under the following circumstances: if it is hot; if it is cold; if you are tired; if anybody thinks you might be tired; if you are nervous; if you are gay; before you go out; if you are out; if you have just returned home; if you feel like it; if you do not feel like it; if you have had no tea for some time; if you have just had a cup.

You definitely must not follow my example. I sleep at five o'clock in the morning; I have coffee for breakfast; I drink innumerable cups of black coffee during the day; I have the most unorthodox and exotic teas even at tea-time.

The other day, for instance - I just mention this as a terrifying example to show you how low some people can sink - I wanted a cup of coffee and a piece of cheese for tea. It was one of those exceptionally hot days and my wife (once a good Englishwoman, now completely and hopelessly led astray by my wicked foreign influence) made some cold coffee and put it in the refrigerator, where it froze and become one solid block. On the other hand, she left the cheese on the kitchen table, where it melted. So I have a piece of coffee and a glass of cheese.

GEORGE MIKES, How to be an Alien


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