Uwants TV消閒生活手機討論遊戲地帶影視娛樂校園生活數碼科技寵物樂園學術文化體育世界購物廣場時事投資貼圖影片上班一族美容纖體戀愛婚姻汽車討論成人資訊博彩娛樂資源交流站務管理
發帖
註冊 登入/註冊 微博



追帖 打印

[英文科] Reading passages for campus life



Reading passages for campus life

[隱藏]
Want to know how to improve your grades without having to spend more time studying? Sounds too good to be true? Well, read on...

    How to Improve Your Study Habits

Perhaps you are an average student with average intelligence. You do well enough in school, but you probably think you will never be a top student. This is not necessarily the case, however. You can receive better grades if you want to. Yes, even students of average intelligence can be top students without additional work. Here's how:

    1. Plan your time carefully. Make a list of your weekly tasks. Then make a schedule or chart of your time. Fill in committed time such as eating, sleeping, meetings, classes, etc. Then decide on good, regular times for studying. Be sure to set aside enough time to complete your normal reading and work assignments. Of course, studying shouldn't occupy all of the free time on the schedule. It's important to set aside time for relaxation, hobbies, and entertainment as well. This weekly schedule may not solve all of your problems, but it will make you more aware of how you spend your time. Furthermore, it will enable you to plan your activities so that you have adequate time for both work and play.

    2. Find a good place to study. Choose one place for your study area. It may be a desk or a chair at home or in the school library, but it should be comfortable, and it should not have distractions. When you begin to work, you should be able to concentrate on the subject.

    3. Skim before you read. This means looking over a passage quickly before you begin to read it more carefully. As you preview the material, you get some idea of the content and how it is organized. Later when you begin to read you will recognize less important material and you may skip some of these portions. Skimming helps double your reading speed and improves your comprehension as well.

    4. Make good use of your time in class. Listening to what the teacher says in class means less work later. Sit where you can see and hear well. Take notes to help you remember what the teacher says.

    5. Study regularly. Go over your notes as soon as you can after class. Review important points mentioned in class as well as points you remain confused about. Read about these points in your textbook. If you know what the teacher will discuss the next day, skim and read that material too. This will help you understand the next class. If you review your notes and textbook regularly, the material will become more meaningful and you will remember it longer. Regular review leads to improved performance on test.

    6. Develop a good attitude about tests. The purpose of a test is to show what you have learned about a subject. The world won't end if you don't pass a test, so don't worry excessively about a single test. Tests provide grades, but they also let you know what you need to spend more time studying, and they help make your knowledge permanent.

    There are other techniques that might help you with your studying. Only a few have been mentioned here. You will probably discover many others after you have tried these. Talk with your classmates about their study techniques. Share with them some of the techniques you have found to be helpful. Improving your study habits will improve your grades.
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

At sixty-five Francis Chichester set out to sail single-handed round the world. This is the story of that adventure.

       Sailing Round the World

Before he sailed round the world single-handed, Francis Chichester had already surprised his friends several times. He had tried to fly round the world but failed. That was in 1931.

    The years passed. He gave up flying and began sailing. He enjoyed it greatly. Chichester was already 58 years old when he won the first solo transatlantic sailing race. His old dream of going round the world came back, but this time he would sail. His friends and doctors did not think he could do it, as he had lung cancer. But Chichester was determined to carry out his plan. In August, 1963, at the age of nearly sixty-five, an age when many men retire, he began the greatest voyage of his life. Soon, he was away in this new 16-metre boat, Gipsy Moth.

    Chichester followed the route of the great nineteenth century clipper ships. But the clippers had had plenty of crew. Chicheater did it all by himself, even after the main steering device had been damaged by gales. Chichester covered 14, 100 miles before stopping in Sydney, Australia. This was more than twice the distance anyone had previously sailed alone.

    He arrived in Australia on 12 December, just 107 days out from England. He received a warm welcome from the Australians and from his family who had flown there to meet him. On shore, Chichester could not walk without help. Everybody said the same thing: he had done enough; he must not go any further. But he did not listen.

    After resting in Sydney for a few weeks, Chichester set off once more in spite of his friends' attempts to dissuade him. The second half of his voyage was by far the more dangerous part, during which he sailed round the treacherous Cape Horn.

    On 29 January he left Australia. The next night, the blackest he had ever known, the sea became so rough that the boat almost turned over. Food, clothes, and broken glass were all mixed together. Fortunately, bed and went to sleep. When he woke up, the sea had become calm the nearest person he could contact by radio, unless there was a ship nearby, Wild be on an island 885 miles away.

    After succeeding in sailing round Cape Horn, Chichester sent the following radio message to London:" I feel as if I had wakened from a nightmare. Wild horses could not drag me down to Cape Horn and that sinister Southern Ocean again."

    Just before 9 o'clock on Sunday evening 28 May, 1967, he arrived back in England, where a quarter of a million people were waiting to welcome him. Queen Elizabeth II knighted him with the very sword that Queen Elizabeth I had sailed round the world for the first time. The whole voyage from England and back had covered 28, 500 miles. It had taken him nine months , of which the sailing time was 226 days. He had done what he wanted to accomplish.

    Like many other adventurers, Chichester had experienced fear and conquered it. In doing so, he had undoubtedly learnt something about himself. Moreover, in the modern age when human beings depend so much on machines, he had given men throughout the world new pride.






Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

They say that blood is thicker than water, that our relatives are more important to us than others. Everyone was so kind to the old lady on her birthday. Surely her daughter would make an even bigger effort to please he?

               The Present

    It was the old lady's birthday.

    She got up early to be ready for the post. From the second floor flat she could see the postman when he came down the street, and the little boy from the ground floor brought up her letters on the rare occasions when anything came.

    Today she was sure the would be something. Myra wouldn't forget her mother's birthday, even if she seldom wrote at other times. Of course Myra was busy. Her husband had been made Mayor, and Myra herself had got a medal for her work the aged.

    The old lady was proud of Myra, but Enid was the daughter she loved. Enid had never married, but had seemed content to live with her mother, and teach in a primary school round the corner.

    One evening, however, Enid said, "I've arranged for Mrs. Morrison to look after you for a few days, Mother. Tomorrow I have to go into hospital--just a minor operation, I'll soon be home."

    In the morning she went, but never came back--she died on the operating table. Myra came to the funeral, and in her efficient way arranged for Mrs. Morrison to come in and light the fire and give the old lady her breakfast.

    Two years ago that was, and since then Myra had been to see her mother three times, but her husband never.

    The old lady was eight today. She had put on her best dress. Perhaps--perhaps Myra might come. After all, eighty was a special birthday, another decade lined or endured just as you chose to look at it.

    Even if Myra did not come, she would send a present. The old lady was sure of that. Two spots of colour brightened her cheeks. She was excited--like a child. She would enjoy her day.

    Yesterday Mrs. Morrison had given the flat an extra clean, and today she had brought a card and a bunch of marigolds when she came to do the breakfast. Mrs. Grant downstairs had made a cake, and in the afternoon she was going down there to tea. The little boy, Johnnie, had been up with a packet of mints, and said he wouldn't go out to play until the post had come.

    "I guess you'll get lots and lots of presents," he said, "I did last were when I was six."

What would she like? A pair of slippers perhaps. Or a new cardigan. A cardigan would be lovely. Blue's such a pretty colour. Jim had always liked her in blue. Or a table lamp. Or a book, a travel book, with pictures, or a little clock, with clear black numbers. So many lovely things.

She stood by the window, watching. The postman turned round the corner on his bicycle. Her heart beat fast. Johnnie had seen him too and ran to the gate.

    Then clatter, clatter up the stairs. Johnnie knocked at her door.

    "Granny, granny," he shouted, "I've got your post."

    He gave her four envelopes. Three were unsealed cards from old friends. The fourth was sealed, in Myra's writing. The old lady felt a pang of disappointment.

    "No parcel, Johnnie?"

    "No, granny."

    Maybe the parcel was too large to come by letter post. That was it. It would come later by parcel post. She must be patient.
    Almost reluctantly she tore the envelope open. Folded in the card was a piece of paper. Written on the card was a message under the printed Happy Birthday -- Buy yourself something nice with the cheque, Myra and Harold.

    The cheque fluttered to the floor like a bird with a broken wing. Slowly the old lady stooped to pick it up. Her present, her lovely present. With trembling fingers she tore it into little bits.




Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

Many people in the United States spend most of their free time watching television. Certainly, there are many worthwhile programs on television, including news, educational programs for children, programs on current social problems, plays, movies, concerts, and so on. Nevertheless, perhaps people should not be spending so much of their time in front of the TV. Mr Mayer imagines what we might do if we were forced to find other activities.

        Turning off TV: a Quiet Hour

    I would like to propose that for sixty to ninety minutes each evening, right after the early evening news, all television broadcasting in the United States be prohibited by law.

    Let us take a serious, reasonable look at what the results be if such a proposal were accepted. Families might use the time for a real family hour. Without the distraction of TV, they might sit around together after dinner and actually talk to one another. It is well known that many of our problems -- everything, in fact, from the generation gap to the high divorce rate to some forms of mental illness -- are caused at least in part by failure to communicate. We do not tell each other what is disturbing us. The result is emotional difficulty of one kind or another. By using the quiet family hour to discuss our problems, we might get to know each other better, and to like each other better.

    On evenings when such talk is unnecessary, families could rediscover more active pastimes. Freed from TV, forced to find their own activities, they might take a ride together to watch the sunset. Or they might take a walk together (remember feet?) and see the neighborhood with fresh, new eyes.

    With free time and no TV, children and adults might rediscover reading. There is more entertainment in a good book than in a month of typical TV programming. Educators report that the generation growing up with television can barely write an English sentence, even at the college level. Writing is often learned from reading. A more literate new generation could be a product of the quiet hour.

    A different form of reading might also be done, as it was in the past: reading aloud. Few pastimes bring a family closer together than gathering around and listening to mother or father read a good story. The quiet hour could become the story hour. When the quiet hour ends, the TV networks might even be forced to come up with better shows in order to get us back from our newly discovered activities.

    At first glance, the idea of an hour without TV seems radical. What will parents do without the electronic baby-sitter? How will we spend the time? But it is not radical at all. It has been only twenty-five years since television came to control American free time. Those of us thirty-five and older can remember childhoods without television, spent partly with radio -- which at least involved the listener's imagination -- but also with reading, learning, talking, playing games, inventing new activities. It wasn't that difficult. Honest. The truth is we had a ball.






Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

[隱藏]
A miserable and merry Christmas? How could it be?

       A Miserable, Merry Christmas
   
    Christmas was coming. I wanted a pony. To make sure that my parents understood, I declared that I wanted noting else.

    "Nothing but a pony?" my father asked.

    "Nothing," I said.

    "Not even a pair of high boots?"

    That was hard. I did want boots, but I stuck to the pony. "No, not even boots."

    "Nor candy? There ought to be something to fill your stocking with, and Santa Claus can't put a pony into a stocking,"

    That was true, and he couldn't lead a pony down the chimney either . But no. "All I want is a pony," I said. "If I can't have a pony, give me nothing, nothing."

    On Christmas Eve I hung up my stocking along with my sisters.

    The next morning my sisters and I woke up at six. Then we raced downstairs to the fireplace. And there they were, the gifts, all sorts of wonderful things, mixed-up piles of presents. Only my stocking was empty; it hung limp; not a thing in it; and under and around it -- nothing. My sisters had knelt down, each by her pile of gifts; they were crying with delight, till they looked up and saw me standing there looking so miserable. They came over to me and felt my stocking: nothing.

    I don't remember whether I cried at that moment, but my sisters did. They ran with me back to my bed, and there we all cried till I became indignant. That helped some. I got up, dressed, and driving my sisters away, I went out alone into the stable, and there, all by myself, I wept. My mother came out to me and she tried to comfort me. But I wanted no comfort. She left me and went on into the house with sharp words for my father.

    My sisters came to me, and I was rude. I ran away from them. I went around to the front of the house, sat down on the steps, and, the crying over, I ached. I was wronged, I was hurt. And my father must have been hurt, too, a little. I saw him looking out of the window. He was watching me or something for an hour or two, drawing back the curtain so little lest I catch him, but I saw his face, and I think I can see now the anxiety upon on it, the worried impatience.

    After an hour or two, I caught sight of a man riding a pony down the street, a pony and a brand-new saddle; the most beautiful saddle I ever saw, and it was a boy's saddle. And the pony! As he drew near, I saw that the pony was really a small horse, with a black mane and tail, and one white foot and a white star on his forehead. For such a horse as that I would have given anything.

    But the man came along, reading the numbers on the houses, and, as my hopes -- my impossible hopes -- rose, he looked at our door and passed by, he and the pony, and the saddle. Too much, I fell upon the steps and broke into tears. Suddenly I heard a voice.

    "Say, kid," it said, "do you know a boy named Lennie Steffens?"

    I looked up. It was the man on the pony, back again.

    "Yes," I spluttered through my tears. "That's me."

    "Well," he said, "then this is your horse. I've been looking all over for you and your house. Why don't you put your number where it can be seen?"

    "Get down," I said, running out to him. I wanted to ride.

    He went on saying something about "ought to have got here at seven o'clock, but--"

    I hardly heard, I could scarcely wait. I was so happy, so thrilled. I rode off up the street. Such a beautiful pony. And mine! After a while I turned and trotted back to the stable. There was the family, father, mother, sisters, all working for me, all happy. They had been putting in place the tools of my new business: currycomb, brush, pitchfork -- everything, and there was hay in the loft.

    But that Christmas, which my father had planned so carefully, was it the best or the worst I ever knew? He often asked me that; I never could answer as a boy. I think now that it was both. It covered the whole distance from broken-hearted misery to bursting happiness -- too fast, A grown-up could hardly have stood it.
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

San set out to improve efficiency at the shirt factory but, as we find out later in this unit, his plans turned out not quite as he had expected.

      Sam Adams, Industrial Engineer
   
    If you ask my mother how I happened to become an industrial engineer, she'll tell you that I have always been one.

    She means that I have always wanted everything to be well organized and neat. When I was still in elementary school, I liked to keep my socks in the upper left-hand drawer of my bureau, my underwear in the upper right drawer, shirts in the middle drawer, and pants, neatly folded, in the bottom drawer.

    In fact, I was the efficiency expert for the whole family. I used to organize my father's tools, my mother's kitchen utensils, my sister's boyfriends.

    I needed to be efficient. I wanted to be well organized. For me, there was a place for everything and everything was always in its place. These qualities gave me a good foundation for a career in industrial engineering.

    Unfortunately, I was also a bit bossy and I wasn't a very good listener. You'll see what I mean when I tell you about the first project I ever did after I finished my bachelor's degree at the university.

    After graduation I returned home to my small town in Indiana. I didn't have a job yet. Mr. Hobbs, a friend of my father's, owned a small shirt factory in town. Within the past five years it had grown from twenty to eighty workers. Mr. Hobbs was worried that his plant was getting too big and inefficient, so he asked me to come in on a short-term basis as a consultant.

    I went to the plant and spent about a week looking around and making notes. I was really amazed at what I saw.

    Most curious of all, there was no quality control whatsoever. No one inspected the final product of the factory. As a result some of the shirts that were put in boxes for shipment were missing one or two buttons, the collar, even a sleeve sometimes!

    The working conditions were poor. The tables where the workers sat were very high and uncomfortable. Except for a half hour at lunchtime, there were no breaks in the day to relieve the boring work. There was no music. The walls of the workrooms were a dull gray color. I was amazed that the workers hadn't gone on strike.

    Furthermore, the work flow was irregular. There was one especially absent-minded young man in the assembly line who sewed on buttons. After a while I recognized him as "Big Jim," who used to sit behind me in math class in high school. He was very slow and all the shifts were held up at his position. Workers beyond him in line on his shift had to wait with nothing to do; therefore, a great deal of time and efficiency were lost as Big Jim daydreamed while he worked. All week I wondered why he wasn't fired.

    After I made observations for a week, Mr. Hobbs asked me for an oral report of my findings. I covered my major points by telling him the following:

    "If you have a quality control inspection, you will greatly improve your finished product."

    "If the assembly line is redesigned, a smooth work flow can be achieved and time and energy can be saved."

    "If you decrease the height of the worktables, the machine operators will work more comfortably."

    "If the management provides pleasant background music and beautifies the dull setting, the factory will be much more productive."

    "If the workers have a fifteen-minute coffee break in the morning and afternoon, they will be more efficient."

    "If excellent work results in frequent pay increases or promotions, the workers will have greater incentive to produce."

    Mr. Hobbs thanked me for this report and told me he would talk over my suggestions with his brother, the co-owner and manager of the factory. "We're interested in progress here," he said. "We want to keep up with the times."

    He also gave me a check for $ 100 and a box of shirts with his compliments.






Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

The author finds out that good intentions alone are not enough when his attempt to be kind to an old man leaves them both feeling worse than before.
  
               The Sampler

    In a certain store where they sell puddings, a number of these delicious things are laid out in a row during the Christmas season. Here you may select the one which is most to your taste, and you are even allowed to sample them before coming to a decision.

    I have often wondered whether some people, who had no intention of making a purchase, would take advantage of this privilege. One day I asked this question of the shop girl, and I learned it was indeed the case.

    "Now there's one old gentleman, for instance," she told me, "he comes here almost every week and samples each one of the puddings, though he never buys anything, and I suspect he never will. I remember him from last year before that, too. Well, let him come if he wants it, and welcome to it. And what's more, I hope there are a lot more stores where he can go and get his share. He looks as if he needed it all right, and I suppose they can afford it."

    She was still speaking when an elderly gentleman limped up to the counter and began looking closely at the row of puddings with great interest.

    "Why, that's the very gentleman I've been telling you about," whispered the shop girl." Just watch him now." And then turning to him:" Would you like to sample them, sir? Here's spoon for you to use."

    The elderly gentleman, who was poorly but neatly dressed, accepted the spoon and began eagerly to sample one after another of the puddings, only braking off occasionally to wipe his red eyes with a large torn handkerchief.

    "This is quite good."

    "This is not bad either, but a little too heavy."

    All the time it was quite evident that he sincerely believed that he might eventually buy one of these puddings, and I am positive that he did not for a moment feel that he was in any way cheating the store. Poor old chap! Probably he had come down in the world and this sampling was all that was left him from the time when he could afford to come and select his favorite pudding.

    Amidst the crowd of happy, prosperous looking Christmas shoppers, the little black figure of the old man seemed pitiful and out of place, and in a burst of benevolence, I went up to him and said:

    "Pardon me, sir, will you do me a favor? Let me purchase you one of these puddings. It would give me such pleasure."

    He jumped back as if he had been stung, and the blood rushed into his wrinkled face.

    "Excuse me," he said, with more dignity than I would have thought possible considering his appearance, "I do not believe I have the pleasure of knowing you. Undoubtedly you have mistaken me for someone else." And with a quick decision he turned to the shop girl and said in a loud voice, "Kindly pack me up this one here. I will take it with me." He pointed at one of the largest and most expensive of the puddings.

    The girl took down the pudding from its stand and started to make a parcel of it, while he pulled out a worn little black pocketbook and began counting out shillings and pennies on to the counter. To save his "honour" he had been forced into a purchase which he could not possibly afford. How I longed for the power to unsay my tactless words! It was too late though, and I felt that the kindest thing I could do now would be walk away.

    "You pay at the desk," the shop girl was telling him, but he did not seem to understand and kept trying to put the coins into her hand. And that was the last I saw or the old man. Now he can never go there to sample pudding any more.






Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

A young boy faces the impossible task of trying to soften the blow of tragic mews.

       You Go Your Way, I'll Go Mine

   The messenger got off his bicycle in front of the house of Mrs. Rosa Sandoval. He went to the door and knocked gently. He knew almost immediately that someone was inside the house. He could not hear anything, but he was sure the knock was bringing someone to the door and he was most eager to see who this person would be -- his woman named Rosa Sandoval who was now to heat of murder in the world and to feel it in herself. The door was not a long time opening, but there was no hurry in the way it moved on its hinges. The movement of the door was as if, whoever she was, she and nothing in the world to fear. Then the door was open, and there she was.

    To Homer the Mexican woman was beautiful. He could see that she had been patient all her life, so that now, after years of it, her lips were set in a gentle and saintly smile. But like all people who never receive telegrams the appearance of a messenger at the front door is full of terrible implication. Homer knew that Mrs. Rosa Sandoval was shocked to see him. Her first word was the first word of all surprise. She said "Oh," as if instead of a messenger she had thought of opening the door to someone she had know a long time and would be pleased to sit down with. Before she spoke again she studied Homer's eyes and Homer Knew that she knew the message was not a welcome one.

    "You have a telegram?" she said.

    It wasn't Homer's fault. His work was to deliver telegrams. Even so, it seemed to him that he was part of the whole mistake. He felt awkward and almost as if he alone were responsible for what had happened. At the same time he wanted to come right out and say, "I'm only a messenger, Mrs. Sandoval, I'm very sorry I must bring you a telegram like this, but it is only because it is my work to do so."

    "Who is it for?" the Mexican woman said.

    "Mrs. Rosa Sandoval, 1129 G Street." Homer said. He extended the telegram to the Mexican woman, but she would not touch it.

    "Are you Mrs. Sandoval?" Homer said.

    "Please," the woman said. "Please come in. I cannot read English. I am Mexican. I read only La Prensa which comes from Mexico City." She paused a moment and looked at the boy standing awkwardly as near the door as he could be and still be inside the house.
"Please," she said, "what does the telegram say?"

    "Mrs. Sandoval," the messenger said, "the telegram says --"

    But now the woman interrupted him. "But you must open the telegram and read it to me," she said. "You have not opened it."

    "Yes, ma'am," Homer said as if he were speaking to a school teacher who had just corrected him.

    He opened the telegram with nervous fingers. The Mexican woman stooped to pick up the torn envelope, and tried to smooth it out. As she did so she said, "Who sent the telegram -- my son Juan Domingo?"

    "No, ma'am." Homer said. "The telegram is from the War Department."

    "War Department?" the Mexican woman said.

    "Mrs. Sandoval," Homer said swiftly, "your son is dead. Maybe it's a mistake, Everybody makes a mistake, Mrs. Sandoval. Maybe it wasn't your son. Maybe it was somebody else. The telegram says it was Juan Domingo. But maybe the telegram is wrong,"

    The Mexican woman pretended not to hear.

    "Oh, do not be afraid," she said. "Come inside. Come inside. I will bring you candy." She took the boy's arm and brought him to the table at the center of the room and there she made him sit.

    "All boys like candy," she said. "I will bring you candy." She went into another room and soon returned with an old chocolate candy box. She opened the box at the table and in it Homer saw a strange kind of candy.

    "Here," she said. "Eat this candy. All boys like candy."

    Homer took a piece of the candy from the box, put it into his mouth, and tried to chew.

    "You would not bring me a bad telegram," she said. "You are a good boy -- like my little Juanito when he was a little boy. Eat another piece." And she made the messenger take another piece of the candy.

    Homer sat chewing the dry candy while the Mexican woman talked. "It is our own candy," she said, "from cactus. I made it for my Juanito when he come home, but you eat it. You are my boy, too."

    Now suddenly she began to sob, holding herself in as if weeping were a disgrace. Homer wanted to get up and run, but he knew he would stay. He even thought he might stay the rest of his life. He just didn't know what else to do to try to make the woman less unhappy, and if she had asked him to take the place of her son, he would not have been able to refuse, because he would not have known how. He got to his feet, as if by standing he meant to begin correcting what could not be corrected and then he knew the foolishness of this intention and became more awkward than ever. In his heart he was saying over and over again, "What can I do? What the hell can I do? I'm only the messenger."




Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

Throughout the ages different ideas have been expressed about the working of the human brain. It is only recently, however, that science has begun to give us some idea of how the brain really works.

               The Brain
            The Most Powerful
         Computer in the Universe


    Man still has a lot to learn about the most powerful and complex part of his body -- the brain.

    In ancient times men did not think that the brain was the centre of mental activity. Aristotle the philosopher of ancient Greece thought that the mind was based in the heart. It was not until the 18th century that man realised that the whole of the brain was involved in the workings of the mind.

    During the 19th century scientists found that when certain parts of the brain were damaged men lost the ability to do certain things. And so, people thought that each part of the brain controlled a different activity. But modern research has found that this is not so. It is not easy to say exactly what each part of the brain does.

    In the past 50 years there has been a great increase in the amount of research being done on the brain. Chemists and biologists have found that the way the brain works is far more complicated that they had thought. In fact many people believe that we are only now really starting to learn the truth about how the human brain works. The more scientists find out, the more questions they are unable to answer. For instance, chemists have found that over 100,000 chemical reactions take place in the brain every second. Mathematicians who have tried to use computers to copy the way the brain works have found that even using the latest electronic equipment they would have to build a computer which weighed over 10,000 kilos. Some recent research also suggests that we remember everything that happens to us. We may not be able to recall this information, but it is all stored in our brains.

    Scientists hope that if we can discover how the brain works, the better use we will be able to put it to. For example, how do we learn language? Man differs most from all the other animals in his ability to learn and use language but we still do not know exactly how this is dine. Some children learn to speak and read and write when they are very young compared to average children. But scientists are not sure why this happens. They are trying to find out whether there is something about the way we teach language to children which in fact prevents children from learning sooner.

    Earlier scientists thought that during a man's lifetime the power of his brain decreased. But it is now thought that this is not so. As long as the brain is given plenty of exercise it keeps its power. It has been found that an old person who has always been mentally active has a quicker mind than a young person who has done only physical work. It is now thought that the more work we give our brains, the more work they are able to do.

    Other people now believe that we use only 1% of our brains' full potential. They say that the only limit on the power of the brain is the limit of what we think is possible. This is probably because of the way we are taught as children. When we first start learning to use our minds we are told what to do, for example, to remember certain facts, but we are not taught how our memory works and how to make that best use of it. We are told to make noted hut we are not taught how our brains accept information and which is the best way to organise the information we want our brains to accept.

    This century man has made many discoveries about the universe -- the world outside himself. But he has also started to look into the workings of that other universe which is inside himself -- the human brain.
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

[隱藏]
I first heard this story a few years ago from a girl I had met in New York's Greenwich Village. Probably the story is one of those mysterious bits of folklore that reappear every few year, to be told anew in one form or another. However, I still like to think that it really did happen, somewhere, sometime.

                Going Home

    They were going to Fort Lauderdale -- three boys and three girls -- and when they boarded the bus, they were carrying sandwiches and wine in paper bags, dreaming of golden beaches and sea tides as the gray, cold spring of Now York vanished behind them.

    As the bus passed through New Jersey, they began to notice Vingo. He sat in front of them, dressed in a plain, ill-fitting suit, never moving, his dusty face masking his age. He kept chewing the inside of his lip a lot, frozen into complete silence.

    Deep into the night, outside Washington, the bus pulled into Howard Johnson's, and everybody got off except Vingo. He sat rooted in his seat, and the young people began to wonder about him, trying to imagine his life: perhaps he was a sea captain, a runaway from his wife, an old soldier going home. When they went back to the bus, one of the girls sat beside him and introduced herself.

    "We're going to Florida," she said brightly. "I hear it's really beautiful."

    "It is," he said quietly, as if remembering something he had tried to forget.

    "Want some wine?" she said. He smiled and took a swig from the bottle. He thanked her and retreated again into his silence. After a while, she went back to the others, and Vingo nodded in sleep.

    In the morning, they awoke outside another Howard Johnson's, and this time Vingo went in. The girl insisted that he join them. He seemed very shy, and ordered black coffee and smoked nervously as the young people chattered about sleeping on beaches. When they returned to the bus, the girl sat with Vingo again, and after a while, slowly and painfully, he began go tell his story. He had been in jail in New York for the past four years, and now he was going home.

    "Are you married?"

    "I don't know."

    "You don't know?" she said.

    "Well, when I was in jail I wrote to my wife," he said. "I told her that I was going to be away a long time, and that if she couldn't stand it, if the kids kept askin' questions, if it hurt her too much, well, she could jus forget me. I'd understand. Get a new guy , I said -- she's a wonderful woman, really something -- and forget about me. I told her she didn't have to write me. And she didn't. Not for three and a half years."

    "And you're going home now, not knowing?"

    "Yeah," he said shyly. "Well, last week, when I was sure the parole was coming through, I wrote the again. We used to live in Brunswick, just Before Jacksonville, and there's a big oak tree just as you come into town, I told her that if she didn't have a new guy and if she'd take me back, she should put a yellow handkerchief on the tree, and I'd get off and come home. If she didn't want me, forget it -- no handkerchief, and I'd go on through."

    "Wow," the girl exclaimed. "Wow."

    She told the others, and soon all of them were in it, caught up in the approach of Brunswick, looking at the pictures Vingo showed them of his wife and three children -- the woman handsome in a plain way, the children still unformed in the much-handled snapshots.

    Now they were 20 miles from Brunswick, and the young people took over window seats on the right side, waiting for the approach of the great oak tree. Vingo stopped looking, tightening his face, as id fortifying himself against still another disappointment.

    Then Brunswick was 10 miles, and then five. Then, suddenly, all of the young people were up out of their seats, screaming and shouting and crying, doing small dances of joy. All except Vingo.

    Vingo sat there stunned, looking at the oak tree. It was covered with yellow handkerchiefs -- 20 of them, 30 of them, maybe hundreds, a tree that stood like a banner of welcome billowing in the wind. As the young people shouted, the old con slowly rose from his seat and made his way to the front of the bus to go home.
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

It is humorous essay. But after reading it you will surely find that the author is most serious in writing it.

         Ts There Life on Earth?
   
    There was great excitement on the planet of Venus this week. For the first time Venusian scientists managed to land a satellite on the plant Earth, and is has been sending back signals as well as photographs ever since.

    The satellite was directed into an area know as Manhattan (named after the great Venusian astronomer Prof. Manhattan, who first discovered it with his telescope 20,000 light years ago).

    Because of excellent weather conditions and extremely strong signals, Venusian scientists were able to get valuable information as to the feasibility of a manned flying saucer landing on Earth. A press conference was held at the Venus Institute of Technology.

    "We have come to the conclusion, based on last week's satellite landing," Prof. Zog said, "that there is no life on Earth."

    "How do you know this?" the science reporter of the Venus Evening Star asked.

    "For one thing, Earth's surface in the area of Manhattan is composed of solid concrete and nothing can grow there. For another, the atmosphere is filled with carbon monoxide and other deadly gases and nobody could possibly breather this air and survive."

    "What does this mean as far as our flying sauce program is concerned?"

    "We shall have to take our own oxygen with us, which means a much heavier flying saucer than we originally planned."

    "Are there any other hazards that you discovered in your studies?"

    "Take a look at this photo. You see this dark black cloud hovering over the surface of Earth? We call this the Consolidated Edison Belt. We don't know what it is made of, but it could give us a lot of trouble and we shall have to make further tests before we send a Venus Being there."

"Over here you will notice what seems to be a river, but the satellite findings indicate it is polluted and the water is unfit to drink. This means we shall have to carry our own water, which will add even greater weight to the saucer."

    "Sir, what are all those tiny black spots on the photographs?"

    "We're not certain. They seem to be metal particles that move along certain paths. They emit gases, make noise and keep crashing into each other. There are so many of these paths and so many metal particles that  it is impossible to land a flying saucer without its being smashed by one."

    "What are those stalagmite projections sticking up?"

    "They're some type of granite formations that give off light at night. Prof. Glom has named them skyscrapers since they seem to be scraping the skies."

    "If all you say is true, won't this set back the flying saucer program several years?"

    "Yes, but we shall proceed as soon as the Grubstart gives us the added funds."

    "Prof. Zog, why are we spending billions and billions of zilches to land a flying saucer on Earth when there is no life there?

    "Because if we Venusians can learn to breathe in an Earth atmosphere, then we can live anywhere."
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

A heated discussion about whether men are braver than women is settled in a rather unexpected way.

              The Dinner Party

    I first heard this tale in India, where is told as if true -- though any naturalist would know it couldn't be. Later someone told me that the story appeared in a magazine shortly before the First World War. That magazine story, and the person who wrote it, I have never been able to track down.

    The country is India. A colonial official and his wife are giving a large dinner party. They are seated with their guests -- officers and their wives, and a visiting American naturalist -- in their spacious dining room, which has a bare marble floor, open rafters and wide glass doors opening onto a veranda.

    A spirited discussion springs up between a young girl who says that women have outgrown the jumping-on-a-chair-at-the-sight-of-a-mouse era and a major who says that they haven't.

    "A woman's reaction in any crisis," the major says, "is to scream. And while a man may feel like it, he has that ounce more of control than a woman has. And that last ounce is what really counts."

    The American does not join in the argument but watches the other guests. As he looks, he sees a strange expression come over the face of the hostess. She is staring straight ahead, her muscles contracting slightly. She motions to the native boy standing behind her chair and whispers something to him. The boy's eyes widen: he quickly leaves the room.

    Of the guests, none except the American notices this or sees the boy place a bowl of milk on the veranda just outside the open doors.

    The American comes to with a start. In India, milk in a bowl means only one thing -- bait for a snake. He realizes there must be a cobra in the room. He looks up at the rafters -- the likeliest place -- but they are bare. Three corners of the room are empty, and in the fourth the servants are waiting to serve the next course. There is only one place left -- under the table.
    His first impulse is to jump back and warn the others, but he knows the commotion would frighten the cobra into striking. He speaks quickly, the tone of his voice so commanding that it silences everyone.

    "I want to know just what control everyone at this table has. I will count three hundred -- that's five minutes -- and not one of you is to move a muscle. Those who move will forfeit 50 rupees. Ready?"

    The 20 people sit like stone images while he counts. He is saying "...two hundred and eighty..." when, out of the corner of his eye, he sees the cobra emerge and make for the bowl of milk. Screams ring out as he jumps to slam the veranda doors safely shut.

    "You were right, Major!" the host exclaims. "A man has just shown us an example of perfect self-control."

    "Just a minute," the American says, turning to his hostess. "Mrs. Wynnes, how did you know that cobra was in the room?"

    A faint smile lights up the woman's face as she replies: "Because it was crawling across my foot."
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

Jefferson died long ago, but may of his ideas still of great interest to us.

          Lessons from Jefferson
   
    Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, may be less famous than George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, but most people remember at last one fact about him: he wrote the Declaration of Independence.

    Although Jefferson lived more than 200 years ago, there is much that we learn from him today. Many of his ideas are especially interesting to modern youth. Here are some of the things he said and wrote:

    Go and see. Jefferson believed that a free man obtains knowledge from many sources besides books and that personal investigation is important. When still a young man, he was appointed to a committee to find out whether the South Branch of the James River was deep enough to be used by large boats. While the other members of the committee sat in the state capitol and studied papers on the subject, Jefferson got into a canoe and made on-the-spot-observations.

    You can learn from everyone. By birth and by education Jefferson belonged to the highest social class. Yet, in a day when few noble persons ever spoke to those of humble origins except to give an order, Jefferson went out of his way to talk with gardeners, servants, and waiters. Jefferson once said to the French nobleman, Lafayette, "You must go into the people's homes as I have done, look into their cooking pots and eat their bread. If you will only do this, you may find out why people are dissatisfied and understand the revolution that is threatening France."

    Judge for yourself. Jefferson refused to accept other people's opinions without careful thought. "Neither believe nor reject anything," he wrote to his nephew, "because any other person has rejected or believed it. Heaved has given you a mind for judging truth and error. Use it."

    Jefferson felt that the people "may safely be trusted to hear everything true and false, and to form a correct judgment. Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter."

    Do what you believe is right. In a free country there will always be conflicting ideas, and this is a source of strength. It is conflict and not unquestioning agreement that keeps freedom alive. Though Jefferson was for many years the object of strong criticism, he never answered his critics. He expressed his philosophy in letters to a friend, "There are two sides to every question. If you take one side with decision and on it with effect, those who take the other side will of course resent your actions."

    Trust the future; trust the young. Jefferson felt that the present should never be chained to customs which have lost their usefulness. "No society," he said, "can make a perpetual constitution, or even a perpetual law. The earth belongs to the living generation." He did not fear new ideas, nor did he fear the future. "How much pain," he remarked, "has been caused by evils which have never happened! I expect the best, not the worst. I steer my ship with hope, leaving fear behind."

    Jefferson's courage and idealism were based on knowledge. He probably knew more than any other man of his age. He was an expert in agriculture, archeology, and medicine. He practiced crop rotation and soil conservation a century before these became standard practice, and he invented a plow superior to any other in existence. He influenced architecture throughout America, and he was constantly producing devices for making the tasks of ordinary life easier to perform.

    Of all Jefferson's many talents, one is central. He was above all a good and tireless writer. His complete works, now being published for the first time, will fill more than fifty volumes. His talent as an author was soon discovered, and when the time came to write the Declaration of Independence at Philadelphia in 1776, the task of writing it was his. Millions have thrilled to his words: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."

    When Jefferson died on July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of American independence, he left his countrymen a rich legacy of ideas and examples. American education owes a great debt to Thomas Jefferson, Who believed that only a nation of educated people could remain free.




Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

Trying to make some money before entering university, the author applies for a teaching job. But the interview goes from bad to worse...

             My First Job

    While I was waiting to enter university, I saw advertised in a local newspaper a teaching post at a school in a suburb of London about ten miles from where I lived. Being very short money and wanting to do something useful, I applied, fearing as I did so, that without a degree and with no experience in teaching my chances of getting the job were slim.

    However, three days later a letter arrived, asking me to go to Croydon for an interview. It proved an awkward journey: a train to Croydon station; a ten-minute bus ride and then a walk of at least a quarter to feel nervous.

    The school was a red brick house with big windows, The front garden was a gravel square; four evergreen shrubs stood at each corner, where they struggled to survive the dust and fumes from a busy main from a busy main road.

    It was clearly the headmaster himself that opened the door. He was short and fat. He had a sandy-coloured mustache, a wrinkled forehead and hardly any hair.

    He looked at me with an air of surprised disapproval, as a colonel might look at a private whose bootlaces were undone. 'Ah yes,' he grunted. 'You'd better come inside.' The narrow, sunless hall smelled unpleasantly of stale cabbage; the walls were dirty with ink marks; it was all silent. His study, judging by the crumbs on the carpet, was also his dining-room. 'You'd better sit down,' he said, and proceeded to ask me a number of questions: what subjects I had taken in my General School Certificate; how old I was; what games I played; then fixing me suddenly with his bloodshot eyes, he asked me whether I thought games were a vital part of a boy's education. I mumbled something about not attaching too much importance to them. He grunted. I had said the wrong thing. The headmaster and I obviously had very little in common.

    The school, he said, consisted of one class of twenty-four boys, ranging in age from seven to thirteen. I should have to teach all subjects except art, which he taught himself. Football and cricket were played in the Park, a mile away on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons.

    The teaching set-up filled me with fear. I should have to divide the class into three groups and teach them in turn at three different levels; and I was dismayed at the thought of teaching algebra and geometry-two subjects at which I had been completely incompetent at school. Worse perhaps was the idea of Saturday afternoon cricket; most of my friends would be enjoying leisure at that time.

    I said shyly, 'What would my salary be?' 'Twelve pounds a week plus lunch.' Before I could protest, he got to his feet. 'Now', he said, 'you'd better meet my wife. She's the one who really runs this school.'

    This was the last straw. I was very young: the prospect of working under a woman constituted the ultimate indignity.
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP

[隱藏]
Seen through the eyes of a young friend Einstein was a simple, modest and ordinary man.

         The professor and the Yo-yo

    My father was a close friend of Albert Einstein. As a shy young visitor to Einstein's home, I was made to feel at ease when Einstein said, "I have something to show you." He went to his desk and returned with a Yo-Yo. He tried to show me how it worked but he couldn't make it roll back up the string. When my turn came, I displayed my few tricks and pointed out to him that the incorrectly looped string had thrown the toy off balance. Einstein nodded, properly impressed by my skill and knowledge. Later, I bought a new Yo-Yo and mailed it to the Professor as a Christmas present, and received a poem of thanks.

    As boy and then as an adult, I never lost my wonder at the personality that was Einstein. He was the only person I knew who had come to terms with himself and the world around him. He knew what he wanted and he wanted only this: to understand within his limits as a human being the nature of the universe and the logic and simplicity in its functioning. He knew there were answers beyond his intellectual reach. But this did not frustrate him. He was content to go as far as he could.

    In the 23 years of our friendship, I never saw him show jealousy, vanity, bitterness, anger, resentment, or personal ambition. He seemed immune to these emotions. He was beyond any pretension. Although he corresponded with many of the world's most important people, his stationery carried only a watermark - W - for Woolworth's.

    To do his work he needed only a pencil only a pencil and a pad of paper. Material things meant nothing to him. I never knew him to carry money because he never had any use for it. He believed in simplicity, so much so that he used only a safety razor and water to shave. When I suggested that he try shaving cream, he said, "The razor and water do the job."

    "But Professor, why don't you try the cream just once?" I argued. "It makes shaving smoother and less painful."

    He shrugged. Finally, I presented him with a tube of shaving cream. The next morning when he came down to breakfast, he was beaming with the pleasure of a new, great discovery. "You know, that cream really works," he announced. "It doesn't pull the beard. It feels wonderful." Thereafter, he used the shaving cream every morning until the tube was empty. Then he reverted to using plain water.

    Einstein was purely and exclusively a theorist. He didn't have the slightest interest in the practical application of his ideas and theories. His E=mc2 is probably the most famous equation in history - yet Einstein wouldn't walk down the street to see a reactor create atomic energy. He won the Nobel Prize for his Photoelectric Theory, a series of equations that he considered relatively minor in importance, but he didn't have any curiosity in observing how his theory made TV possible.

    My brother once gave the Professor a toy, a bird that balanced on the edge of a bowl of water and repeatedly dunked its head in the water. Einstein watched it in delight, trying to deduce the operating principle. But be couldn't.

    The next morning he announced, "I had thought about that bird for a long time before I went to bed and it must work this way" He began a ling explanation. Then he stopped, realizing a flaw in his reasoning. "No, I guess that's not it," he said. He pursued various theories for several days until I suggested we take the toy apart to see how it did work. His quick expression of disapproval told me he did not agree with this practical approach. He never did work out the solution.

    Another puzzle that Einstein could never understand was his own fame. He had developed theories that were profound and capable of exciting relatively few scientists. Yet his name was a household word across the civilized world. "I've had good ideas, and so have other men," he once said. "But it's been my good fortune that my ideas have been accepted." He was bewildered by his fame: people wanted to meet him; strangers stared at him on the street; scientists, statesmen, students, and housewives wrote him letters. He never could understand why he received this attention, why he was singled out as something special.

[ 本帖最後由 DutalaTortoise 於 2018-10-28 01:13 AM 編輯 ]
Human stupidity is surefire infinite, as Albeit Einstein maintains.

回覆 引用 TOP



 65 12345
 提示:支持鍵盤翻頁 ←左 右→ 發新話題發佈投票
請先登入
小貼士:
依家可以用“@”tag會員啦!