Thursday, May 22, 2003

ONE MORE C From my brod NES, this story about CHARACTER reminds me of a story back home. A lady in a faded gingham dress and her husband, dressed in a homespun threadbare suit, stepped off the train in Boston, and walked timidly without an appointment into the Harvard University President's outer office. The secretary could tell in a moment that such backwoods, country hicks had no business at Harvard and probably didn't even deserve to be in Cambridge. "We want to see the president," the man said softly. "He'll be busy all day," the secretary snapped. "We'll wait," the lady replied. For hours the secretary ignored them, hoping that the couple would finally become discouraged and go away. They didn't and the secretary grew frustrated and finally decided to disturb the president, even though it was a chore she always regretted. "Maybe if you see them for a few minutes, they'll leave," she said to him. He sighed in exasperation and nodded. Someone of his importance obviously didn't have the time to spend with them, but he detested gingham dresses and homespun suits cluttering up his outer office. The president, stern faced and with dignity, strutted toward the couple. The lady told him, "We had a son who attended Harvard for one year. He loved Harvard. He was happy here. But about a year ago, he was accidentally killed. My husband and I would like to erect a memorial to him, somewhere on campus." The president wasn't touched.... He was shocked. "Madam," he said, gruffly, "we can't put up a statue for every person who attended Harvard and died. If we did, this place would look like a cemetery." "Oh, no," the lady explained quickly. "We don't want to erect a statue. We thought we would like to give a building to Harvard." The president rolled his eyes. He glanced at the gingham dress and homespun suit, then exclaimed, "A building ! Do you have any earthly idea how much a building costs ? We have over seven and a half million dollars in the physical buildings here at Harvard." For a moment the lady was silent. The president was pleased. Maybe he could get rid of them now. The lady turned to her husband and said quietly, "Is that all it costs to start a university ? Why don't we just start our own ?" Her husband nodded. The president's face wilted in confusion and bewilderment. Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford got up and walked away, traveling to Palo Alto, California where they established the university that bears theirs name, Stanford University, a memorial to a son that Harvard no longer cared about. You can easily judge the character of others by how they treat those who they think can do nothing. --------------- A TRUE STORY --------------- by Malcolm Forbes A very business minded friend invited me to have lunch. She came late as usual. Oras Makati raw yon. She tagged along an old man wearing a faded shirt with some stains on the sleeves. He was wearing a pair of Japanese sandals. At first glance, I thought he was a handyman in her office whom she made as alalay or gofer boy. She introduced me to him as MR. ____________. Very polite and formal, I thought. Usually she used the word MANG. My friend told me that she was accompanying him to buy a car. Oww... He did not speak much while eating and so us ladies dominated the conversations. He paid the bill and I looked at my friend. How dare she, inviting me and letting someone else spent his last few pesos in that expensive restaurant. I offered to pay but my friend stopped me. We went to a car dealer. He picked up the newest model. I asked my friend, what he will do with the car when I think, he cannot even drive. My friend kept on chuckling.(sasabunutan ko na sana eh) The agent was ignoring the old man and was trying to convince him to go to a used car dealer. He said he has other customers to attend to. My friend approached them and asked for the price of the car. The agent responded that the old man may not even have the capacity to buy a liter of gas for the car. The old man said he is going to buy it. The agent almost choked. Eh Mang...paano ho ninyo babayaran ? He got his small dilapadated tote bag and got a bunch of bills wrapped in an old newspapers. Pahiya yong agent. In short he was able to buy a car and I asked my friend, who he was, what he does etc. Dahlling. He is a millionaire. He owns several condos in Binondo. He was a victim of kidnapping and he was always a simple man. May anak ba siya ? Puwede bang magpa-adopt ? Uunahan mo pa ako. mwehehehee ------- A true Story of the CAT...sumpaman.


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