IndiaFriends!

As I am reconnecting with my roots and visiting loved ones in India, and away from writing my weekly blog, I thought we could share space in a slightly different format: anecdotes that make me think and chuckle.

Let’s start with this one.

A scene that took place between Austrian Emperor Joseph II and Wolfgang Mozart, marvelously dramatized in the movie, Amadeus, is one of my favorites of all time. The story goes that after hearing Mozart’s opera, The Abduction from the Seraglio, the Emperor complained:

“That is too fine – there are too many notes.”  Mozart’s famous reply was, “There are just as many notes as there should be.”

How often have we complained about this or that in our lives to which a perfect response would be: “Things are as they should be.”?

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In Lewis Carroll’s classic, Through the Looking Glass,” there is an exchange which always makes me chuckle between the White Queen and our unlikely hero, Alice-

The Queen says, “The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday—but never jam to-day.”

“It MUST come sometimes to ‘jam to-day,'” Alice objected.

“No, it can’t,” said the Queen. “It’s jam every OTHER day: to-day isn’t any OTHER day, you know.”

“I don’t understand you,” said Alice. “It’s dreadfully confusing!”

“That’s the effect of living backwards,” the Queen said kindly: “it always makes one a little giddy at first—”

“Living backwards!” Alice repeated in great astonishment. “I never heard of such a thing!”

“—but there’s one great advantage in it, that one’s memory works both ways.”

“I’m sure MINE only works one way,” Alice remarked. “I can’t remember things before they happen.”

“It’s a poor sort of memory that only works backwards,” the Queen remarked.

This makes me think about future memory – a memory of things in the future, a future that has not been born yet.

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There is a story that once, on a long flight, Albert Einstein struck up a conversation with an Indian man next to him.

He said “Let’s play a game. I will ask you a question, if you don’t know the answer, you pay me $5. Then you ask me a question and if I don’t know the answer to that question, I will pay you $500”

The Indian agrees. Einstein asks the first question: “What’s the distance from the Earth to the Moon?

The Indian doesn’t say a word, reaches into his pocket, pulls out a $5 bill and hands it to Einstein.

On his turn, the Indian asks Einstein: “What goes up a hill with 3 legs and comes down on 4 legs?

Einstein thinks about it and comes up with zilch. He hands the Indian $500.

Einstein frustrated by the question asks the Indian: “So, what goes up a hill with three legs and comes down with four?”

Indian says nothing, pulls out $5 from his pocket and hands it to Einstein.

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Have you ever outwitted a smarty-pants or run circles around a busy body? Are there anecdotes that tickle you over and over? Drop your stories and victories in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you.

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