YWO > One Plus One
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|04-16-2012, 09:57 AM||View Post #1 (Link) One Plus One|
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: in the Kingdom where the KJB man rules the roost
Times Thanked: 85
Would you please tell me, guys and girls, is this story worth reading.
In his declining years a vagabond scholar Ibn Abu happened to learn the deep capabilities of arithmetic.
Chief of the detachment of the Shah stopped the old man, wandering in the wilderness, and asked how much would be one plus one. A small wizened old man looked startled for a moment. He raised his head, holding by long wrinkled fingers his turban, and looked at the six-foot black-bearded robust fellow in a gilded coat. Realizing that it was not joke, Ibn Abu replied.
The chief nodded - the guards grabbed the old man and tied to a donkey's saddle.
Ibn Abu was taken to the palace and locked in a dark damp basement, adjacent to the sewer.
A few hours the tramp was racking his brains over the reason of his confinement: "What have I done wrong? Respect for other's rights and dignity unknown to tyrants, but even they have its own inherent, barbaric, logic. What he needed a poor sick old man for ?"
The door clanged, and the guards, having changed Ibn Abu's clothes, escorted the prisoner to the palace before the eyes of the lord.
Ruddy little man in a silk gilded robe and turban, decorated with diamonds, welcomed Ibn Abu and seated " the dear guest" next to him on the carpet and explained the essence of the matter.
'My only son and heir is so gifted in arithmetic, that all teachers found themselves unable to teach him anything. However, the youth should develop, and I will not rest until I find him worthy teacher.' Tyrant turned to the guard. ' Call Rahim.'
A few minutes later a slim dark-haired brown-eyed boy in a red silk robe came in the house and threw a hostile glance at Ibn Abu.
'Rahim, the son of ours,' said the tyrant, ' This pundit by the name of ...' a tyrant looked questioningly at Ibn Abu.
The latter barely opened his mouth as the young man interrupted him sharply:
' I don't care about the name of this rogue. Let him say how much will be one plus one, and I'll understand whether he is worth my time.'
' It seems to me it will be two.' Shrugged his puny shoulders Ibn Abu.
' This ignorant is going to teach me?' Rahim exclaimed irritably.
' Don't get excited, my son,' smiled contentedly the tyrant. 'This decent man is just not familiar with your theory. Explain her to him, and I'm sure he will comprehend your wisdom.'
' More solid people in the end turned out to be stupid and stubborn, and this,' Rahim cast a contemptuous glance at Ibn Abu. ' Least of all deserves a credit. Have you learned anything, old man?'
' In the days of my youth, I graduated from the Sorbonne.'
' Even if you're not lying, since that time your brain dried up like a walnut in the tomb of pharaoh.'
' Well, how much do you think will be one plus one?' asked Ibn Abu.
' Surely One!' Rahim shook his long locks, and looked top down at Ibn Abu. ' Now I'm going to prove my theory. Go with me!'
Ibn Abu and several guards followed rapidly receding youth.
They stopped at the edge of a deep pit, one part of which was filled with water. From there snarling jaws of a crocodile was sticking out. His half-protruding eyes gleamed with cold green light.
'Give that clever!' ordered Rahim, and the two guards rushed to perform.
'This is my former teacher.' Said Rahim, when the guards returned, dragging young, but very pale and emaciated man in a crumpled and dirty clothes. ' This stubborn was kept in the basement for a week, and he still wont agree with my undeniable conception!'
' Does not his persistence testimony his belief in the truth?'
' What? And you too, old man? Tell me how many heads do you see in the pit?'
'There's a crocodile in the...'
' That is one. Now we add to him one buffoon.'
Rahim nodded and the guards pushed the former teacher in the pit.
A moment later they heard a crunch, and terrible cry broke from the bottom of the well and flew over the vaults of the palace.
Ibn Abu screened his face by his hands and stood motionless until the screams died down.
Rahim cried Ibn Abu:
' Look inside. What do you see?'
Feeling disgust, Ibn Abu looked at the bloody jaws of a monster and oily little eyes. Crocodile winked at the old man and licked his lips.
'Alas,' sighed Ibn Abu. 'I see only one.'
' What did I say? One plus one equals one!' exclaimed Rahim joyfully. ' Now admit that I was right.'
Ibn Abu knew who would be the next course of the crocodile's dinner, if he refuses. However, to betray the memory of the dead scientists Ibn Abu regarded meanness.
' I accept your argument as an axiom, young Lord,' Ibn Abu said,' 'and I will teach you provided that...'
' What?' Rahim frowned and flashed an angry look.
' If you pay me two points upfront as my tuition fees.'
'Is that all?' Rahim stood stunned for some moments and then laughed. ' Old man, you are more stupid, than I supposed you to be.'
' I wish, my Lord, that the payment will be made at the central market square in the presence of people by the main palace treasurer.'
' Don't you know,' Rahim squinted at the old man, ' that it is my father. Are you going to distract him from the affairs with such nonsense?'
' You will find, the master, that your father will like this financial transaction.'
' Well, you'll get your two points. ' Rahim smiled.
At noon the market square was filled with people, crowded around the platform for execution.
On the smaller one, adjacent to it and enclosed by guard's chain, were located a tyrant with his son and the court.
Ibn Abu climbed up on the big stage and raised his hand. The roar died down and the old man said:
' I am happy to announce publicly that our young Lord is the most brilliant mathematician, that I've ever met. He invented a great formula, based on which one plus one always equals one!'
The crowd roared in admiration.
"Long live our glorious Lord! ", " Long live the one plus one! " The people raged.
Ibn Abu raised his hand to set the silence.
'Each of you knows what an honor for me to be a teacher of the renowned scientist and so I took charge de bene esse, namely two points. To exclude all possible rumors and speculations on this account, I asked to be given them publicly.'
Ibn Abu turned to the tyrant, bowed and said:
' It's time once again to show loyalty of your son's theory.'
Tyrant took out a bag under the counter and threw it to one of the guards. He caught, went to Ibn Abu and gave him two points.
Ibn Abu shook his head and said:
' I have to count them. Let's take one.'
Rahim bent with laughter. The tyrant smiled. The guard, grinning, glanced at the master. He nodded - the guard handed Ibn Abu a point. The old man took it, raised above his head and shouted:
'This is One!'
He took the next point with the other hand and declared:
' One plus one equals... how much?'
Over the area the silence hung for a moment.
A timid voice from the crowd said:
'There will be one.'
'One, one!' cried the people.
' It's true!' shouted Ibn Abu and turned to the guard:
'The contract was for two.'
He gave the old man one more point.
'One plus one equals ...' shouted the old man.
' One!' Echoed the crowd frantically.
The guard looked at the tyrant in confusion. The later frowned, nodded and said something to Rahim who became red from rage.
The guard gave Ibn Abu another point. The old man appealed to the opinion of the crowd and put the points in his bag. When it was full, Ibn Abu got another one, and packed points in it. No matter how much the guard did give points to Ibn Abu - in the end he obtained only one by the virtue of inexorable consequence of Rahim's theory.
' Let me chop this old scoundrel into pieces,' whispered the guard's chief to the tyrant.
' But my theory,' clutched his head Rahim. ' I'll be disgraced! Feed this geek until he choke and burst.'
' But, son, your theory is too expensive.' The tyrant shook his head doubtfully.
When Ibn Abu filled all his bags, he turned and bowed to the tyrant.
'I think, my Lord, one point would be enough for me. God bless your incomparable generosity!'
Then Ibn Abu appealed to the people:
' My single point I sacrifice to you, good people!' With these words he threw the bags from the platform, and the points flew with a clatter on the cobbled ground.
People with a wild roar gathered them.
'I'll fed this rascal to crocodiles!' Rahim gritted his teeth.
'No, son. Now this crook is becoming a popular idol,' replied the father. ' Crocodile doesn't work here. Between us, one plus one is not always one. We have to send this bastard out of our kingdom in peace.'
'But my theory is forever confounded!' Rahim cried in despair.
'Nothing like this,' laughed the tyrant. ' A great happiness to all the governors is that the people never really reflect on how much will actually be one plus one. This stupid story would be quickly forgotten and people will only remember your generosity. We'll get back our points.'
Tyrant called chief of the guard and said:
' Tell the main clerk to prepare an order: from today all duties on trade increases fivefold. All those who will shy away will be subjected to strict punishment.'
The tyrant dismissed the subordinate and smiled at Rahim:
' There would be a lot dissatisfied - your alligator wont remain hungry.'
This very evening the old man was seated on a donkey with a wineskin of water, and the tyrant said gently:
'You're not so stupid, as you seemed to be. Go with the world and never again do appear here.'
' And remember,' added Rahim, ' in our possession one plus one equals one; my crocodile is always ready to prove it.'
The old man clapped his heels on the sides of the donkey, and the animal reluctantly moved up and trotted away. ...
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|05-23-2012, 04:37 PM||View Post #2 (Link) A very excellent read.|
Join Date: May 2012
Times Thanked: 2
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