学习啦【英语美文欣赏】 编辑：韦彦 发布时间：2016-09-18
A Woman’s Tears
“Why are you crying?” he asked his Mom. “Because I’m a woman.” she told him. “I don’t understand,” he said. His Mom just hugged him and said, “And you never will ... ” Later the little boy asked his father, “Why does mother seem to cry for no reason?” “All women cry for no reason.” was all his Dad could say.
The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry. Finally he put in a call to God; when God got on the phone, the man said, “God, why do women cry so easily?” God said,“When I made woman she had to be special. I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world; yet gentle enough to give comfort. I gave her an inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times comes from her children. I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going when everyone else gives up and take care of her family through fatigue and sickness without complaining. I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances, even when her child has hurt them very badly. I gave her strength to carry her husband through his faults and fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart. I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife, but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly. I gave her a tear to shed. It’s hers exclusively to use whenever it is needed. It’s her only weakness. It’s a tear for mankind.”
Laziness is a sin: everyone knows that. We have probably all had lectures pointing out thatlaziness is immoral, that it is wasteful, and that lazy people will never amount to anything inlife.But laziness can be more harmful than that, and it is often caused by more complexreasons than the simple wish to avoid work. Some people who appear to be lazy are sufferingfrom much more serious problems. They may be so distrustful of their fellow workers that theyare unable to join in any group task for fear of being laughed at or fear of having their ideasstolen. These people who seem lazy may be deadened by a fear of failure that prevents fruitfulwork. Or other sorts of fantasies may prevent work: some people are so busy planning,sometimes planning great deals of fantastic achievements,that they are unable to deal withwhatever“lesser” work is on hand. Still other people are not avoiding work,strictly speaking;they are nearly procrastinating—rescheduling their day.Laziness can actually be helpful. Likeprocrastinators,some people look lazy when they are really thinking, planning,researching. Weshould all remember that some great scientific discoverise occurred by chance. Newton wasn’tworking in the orchard when the apple hit him and he devised the theory of gravity. All of uswould like to have someone “lazy” build the car or stove we buy,particularly if that“laziness”—were caused by the worker’s taking time to check each step of his work and to dohis job right. And sometimes,being “lazy”, that is, taking time off for a rest is good for theoverworked students or executive. Taking a rest can be particularly helpful to the athlete whois trying too hard or the doctor who’s simply working himself overtime too many evenings atthe clinic.So be careful when you’re tempted to call someone lazy. That person may be thinking,resting or planning his or her next book.
We enjoy reading books that belong to us much more than if they are borrowed. A borrowedbook is like a guest in the house; it must be treated with punctiliousness, with a certainconsiderate formality. You must see that it sustains no damage; it must not suffer while underyour roof. But your own books belong to you; you treat them with that affectionate intimacythat annihilates formality. Books are for use, not for show; you should own no book that youare afraid to mark up, or afraid to place on the table, wide open and face down. A good reasonfor marking favorite passages in books is that this practice enables you to remember moreeasily the significant sayings, to refer to them quickly, and then in later years, it is like visiting aforest where you once blazed a trail. Everyone should begin collecting a private library in youth;the instinct of private property can here be cultivated with every advantage and no evils.The best of mural decorations is books; they are more varied in color and appearance thanany wallpaper, they are more attractive in design, and they have the prime advantage ofbeing separate personalities, so that if you sit alone in the room in the firelight, you aresurrounded with intimate friends.
The knowledge that they are there in plain view is both stimulating and refreshing. Books areof the people, by the people, for the people. Literature is the immortal part of history; it is thebest and most enduring part of personality. Book-friends have this advantage over livingfriends; you can enjoy the most truly aristocratic society in the world whenever you want it. Thegreat dead are beyond our physical reach, and the great living are usually almost asinaccessible. But in a private library, you can at any moment converse with Socrates orShakespeare or Carlyle or Dumas or Dickens. And there is no doubt that in these books yousee these men at their best. They "laid themselves out," they did their ultimate best toentertain you, to make a favorable impression. You are necessary to them as an audience isto an actor; only instead of seeing them masked, you look into their innermost heart of heart.
In ancient Greece athletic festivals were very important and had strong religious associations.
The Olympian athletic festival held every four years in honor of Zeus, king of the OlympianGods, eventually lost its local character, became first a national event and then, after the rulesagainst foreign competitors had been abolished, international. No one knows exactly how farback the Olympic Games go, but some official records date from 776B.C. The games took placein August on the plain by Mount Olympus. Many thousands of spectators gathered from allparts of Greece, but no married woman was admitted even as a spectator. Slaves, women anddishonored persons were not allowed to compete. The exact sequence of events isuncertain, but events included boy’s gymnastics, boxing, wrestling, horse racing and fieldevents, though there were fewer sports involved than in the modern Olympic Games.
On the last day of the Games, all the winners were honored by having a ring of holy olive leavesplaced on their heads. So great was the honor that the winner of the foot race gave his nameto the year of his victory. Although Olympic winners received no prize money, they were, in fact,richly rewarded by their state authorities. How their results compared with modern standards,we unfortunately have no means of telling. After an uninterrupted history of almost 1,200years, the Games were suspended by the Romans in 394 A.D. They continued for such a longtime because people believed in the philosophy behind the Olympics: the idea that a healthybody produced a healthy mind, and that the spirit of competition in sports and games waspreferable to the competition that caused wars. It was over 1,500 years before another suchinternational athletic gathering took place in Athens in 1896. Nowadays,the Games are held indifferent countries in turn. The host country provides vast facilities, including a stadium,swimming pools and living accommodation, but competing countries pay their own athletes’expenses.