The Bloody Thumb
The Bloody Thumb
I met the old man at a cafe. I was a stranger in the town.
"Did you hear the radio news yesterday?" he asked me.
"I didn't," I said."Was there anything exciting?"
"Exciting, no! It was important to me-and very, very sad.pack of hungry dogs killed and ate my best friend. "
"Oh dear ! " I cried. "I am sorry. How did it happen?"
"He was working in his olive grove on the hilisides. The pack attacked him there. we'll never know all the facts , of curse. When he didn't return, I went to the grove and-"
"You found the body?" I asked.
The old fellow drank half his coffee. "The body?" he repeated."No, no. .I said they were hungry dogs, didn't I? The g bones were lying here and there in the grove. But I found this-" He pushed open a matchbox which he was holding in his
The box contained a man's thumb. It was lying on some hite, bloody material. There was a cut-an old cut-on the mmb nail.
"See that cut," the man said. "I recognised it. This is my fiend's right thumb. The dogs ate the rest of him! "
The old man began to cry then. He finished his coffee quick. ly and left the cafe. I drank mine and called the waiter.
"I'll pay the gentleman's bill," I said. "Please don't trou. ble him with it. His poor friend-how awful! You've heard the news?"
The waiter laughed . "Yes. There's a hole in the bottom of the matchbox. He puts his own thumb through the hole. The 'blood' is red ink, I believe. Is the story worth a cup of coffee, sir?"
Claire Walton is working at home on a Sunday afternoor. The phone rings. It is an old friend.
MICK: Hello, Claire. This is Mick.
CLAIRE: Mick! Nice to hear from you again. How are you?
MtcK: Fine, thanks. And you?
CLAIRE: Oh , not so bad. I've been very busy , but I'm goingaway on holiday soon.
MICK: Good. Listen. I'm phoning because I want to invite you to a party. At our newhouse. And. . .
CLAIRE: New house? Really?
MIcK: Yes. We've moved. That's why we're giving the pa ty. Can you come?
CLAIRE: Well, that depends. When is it?
MIcK: This Saturday evening.
CLAIRE: Well. . . I'm going away on Sunday morning. Very ear ly. Will the party go onvery late?
MICK: Until two in the morning. But you don't have to si that long.Well? What about it?
CLAIRE: All right. I'll come. But I'd like to bring a present Something for your new house.
What would you like?
MICK: Nothing. I mean, don't bring anything. It isn't necesary.
CLAIRE: But I'd still like...
MICK: Just bring yourself! I'm looking forward to seeingyou again. It's been a long time !
CLAIRE: Yes, it has. I'm looking forward to seeing you. too. and your new house. Uh. . .
when does the party start?
MlcK: Come any time after eight. All right? .
CLAIRE: Yes. Oh. by the W..
MICK: Bye! See you on Saturday evening.
CLAIRE: Wait a moment , Mick. You haven't. . . Mick? Are you still there? You haven'tgiven me your new address. Hello? Mick? Hello?
Question on Text B
7.Read the following passage once. Underline the key words while reading and reteli the story to your partner.
There Are Some Things You Can't Get Away Without
I have a confession to make, and the sooner it gets out in the open, the better I'll feel about. I don't drive a car.
Americans are broad-minded people. they'll accept the fact that a person newspapercan be an alcoholic, a dope fiend, a wife beater, and even anewspaperman but if a man doesn't drive. therc is something wrong with him.
Through the years I've found it very embarrassing to admit it to anyand my best friends tend to view me with suspicion and contempt.
But where I really run into. trouble is when I go into a stone and try to made a purchase with a check.
It happend again last week when I went to a discount house at a large shopping center in maryland.Iwanted to buy a portable tyewriter,and the salesman was very helpful about showing me the different modeIs.
I decided on one, and then I said, "May I write out a personal check?"
"Naturally, " he said kindly. "Do you have any identification?"
"Of course," I said. I produced an American Express credit card, a Diner's Club credit card, a Bell Telephone credit card d i pass to the White House.
The man inspected them all and then said,"Where's your driver's license?"
"I don't. have one," I replied..
"Did you lose it?"
"No, I didn't lose it. I don't drive a car. "
He pushed a button under the cash register, and suddenly a floor manager came rushing over.
The salesman had now become surly."Thes guy's trying to cash a checd, and he doesn't have a driver's license. Should I call the store detective?"
"Wait a minute. I'll talk to him , " the manager said. "Did you lose your driver's license for some traffic offense?"
"No, I've never driven. I don't like to drive. "
"Nobody likes to drive," the floor manager shouted. "That's no excuse. Why are you trying to cash a check if you don't have a driver's license?"
"I thought all the other identification was good enough," I explained. By this time the president of the store had arrived on the scene. Fortu nately, he recognized my name and okayed the check. He was very embarrassed by the treatment I had received and said, come on, I'll buy you a drink. "
"I forgot to tell you," I said. "I don't drink either. "
This was too much, even for him, and he pushed me toward the door.
"Get out of here , " he said , "and don't come back ! "
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