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Text Book 4

Unit 1


Two college-age boys, unaware that making money usually involves hard work, are tempted by an advertisement that promises them an easy way to earn a lot of money. The boys soon learn that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. 一个大学男孩,不清楚赚钱需要付出艰苦的劳动,被一份许诺轻松赚大钱的广告吸引了。男孩们很快就明白,如果事情看起来好得不像真的,那多半确实不是真的。



John G. Hubbell

"You ought to look into this," I suggested to our two college-age sons. "It might be a way to avoid the indignity of having to ask for money all the time." I handed them some magazines in a plastic bag someone had hung on our doorknob. “你们该看看这个,”我向我们的两个读大学的儿子建议道。“你们若想避免因为老是向人讨钱而有失尊严的话,这兴许是一种办法。”我将挂在我们门把手上的、装在一个塑料袋里的几本杂志拿给他们。

A message printed on the bag offered leisurely, lucrative work ("Big Bucks the Easy Way!") of delivering more such bags. 塑料袋上印着一条信息说,需要招聘人投递这样的袋子,这活儿既轻松又赚钱。(“轻轻松松赚大钱!”)

"I don't mind the indignity," the older one answered. “我不在乎失不失尊严,”大儿子回答说。

"I can live with it," his brother agreed. “我可以忍受,”他的弟弟附和道。

"But it pains me," I said,"to find that you both have been panhandling so long that it no longer embarrasses you." “看到你们俩伸手讨钱讨惯了一点也不感到尴尬的样子,真使我痛心,”我说。

The boys said they would look into the magazine-delivery thing. Pleased, I left town on a business trip. By midnight I was comfortably settled in a hotel room far from home. The phone rang. It was my wife. She wanted to know how my day had gone. 孩子们说他们可以考虑考虑投递杂志的事。我听了很高兴,便离城出差去了。午夜时分,我已远离家门,在一家旅馆的房间里舒舒服服住了下来。电话铃响了,是妻子打来的。她想知道我这一天过得可好。

"Great!" I enthused. "How was your day?" I inquired. “好极了!”我兴高采烈地说。“你过得怎么样”我问道。

"Super!" She snapped. "Just super! And it's only getting started. Another truck just pulled up out front." “棒极了!”她大声挖苦道。“真棒!而且这还仅仅是个开始。又一辆卡车刚在门前停下。”

"Another truck?" “又一辆卡车”?

"The third one this evening. The first delivered four thousand Montgomery Wards. The second brought four thousand Sears, Roebucks. I don't know what this one has, but I'm sure it will be four thousand of something. Since you are responsible, I thought you might like to know what's happening. “今晚第三辆了。第一辆运来了四千份蒙哥马利-沃德百货公司的广告;第二辆运来四千份西尔斯-罗伯克百货公司的广告。我不知道这一辆装的啥,但我肯定又是四千份什么的。既然这事是你促成的,我想你或许想了解事情的进展。”

to hand-deliver the advertising inserts that normally are included with the Sunday paper. The company had promised our boys $600 for delivering these inserts to 4,000 houses by Sunday morning. 我之所以受到指责,事情原来是这样:由于发生了一起报业工人罢工,通常夹在星期日报纸里的广告插页,必须派人直接投送出去。公司答应给我们的孩子六百美金,任务是将这些广告插页在星期天早晨之前投递到四千户人家去。

"Piece of cake!" our older college son had shouted. “不费吹灰之力!”我们上大学的大儿子嚷道。

" Six hundred bucks!" His brother had echoed, "And we can do the job in two hours!" “六百块!”他的弟弟应声道,“我们两个钟点就能干完!”

"Both the Sears and Ward ads are four newspaper-size pages," my wife informed me. "There are thirty-two thousand pages of advertising on our porch. Even as we speak, two big guys are carrying armloads of paper up the walk. What do we do about all this?" “西尔斯和沃德的广告通常都是报纸那么大的四页,”妻子告诉我说,“现在我们门廊上堆着三万二千页广告。就在我们说话的当儿,两个大个子正各抱着一大捆广告走过来。这么多广告,我们可怎么办”。

"Just tell the boys to get busy," I instructed. "They're college men. They'll do what they have to do." “你让孩子们快干,”我指示说。“他们都是大学生了。他们自己的事得由他们自己去做。”

At noon the following day I returned to the hotel and found an urgent message to telephone my wife. Her voice was unnaturally high and quavering. There had been several more truckloads of ad inserts. 第二天中午,我回到旅馆,看到一份紧急留言,要我马上给妻子回电话。她的声音高得很不自然,而且有些颤抖。家里又运到了好几卡车的广告插页。

"They're for department stores, dime stores, drugstores, grocery stores, auto stores and so on. Some are whole magazine sections. We have hundreds of thousands, maybe millions, of pages of advertising here! “有百货公司的,廉价商店的,杂货店的,食品店的,汽车行的,等等。有些像整本杂志那么厚。我们这里有数十万页,说不定是几百万页的广告!

They are crammed wall-to-wall all through the house in stacks taller than your oldest son. There's only enough room for people to walk in, take one each of the eleven inserts, roll them together, slip a rubber band around them and slide them into a plastic bag. 我们家整个房子从东墙到西墙,从南墙到北墙统统堆满了广告,一堆又一堆,比你大儿子还要高。现在只剩下一点点空间,刚够一个人走进去,从十一种插页中各取一份,卷在一起,套上橡皮筋,再塞进一只塑料袋内。

We have enough plastic bags to supply every takeout restaurant in America!" Her voice kept rising, as if working its way out of the range of the human ear. "All this must be delivered by seven o'clock Sunday morning."我们的塑料袋足够供应全美所有的外卖餐厅!”她越讲声音越响,几乎震耳欲聋。“这么多的广告必须在星期日早晨七点以前统统送出去。”

"Well, you had better get those guys banding and sliding as fast as they can, and I'll talk to you later. Got a lunch date.”“嗯,你最好让孩子们尽快地捆扎装袋,等会儿我再跟你谈。我有个午餐约会。”

When I returned, there was another urgent call from my wife. 我餐后回来,妻子又打来一只紧急电话。

"Did you have a nice lunch?" she asked sweetly. I had had a marvelous steak, but knew better by now than to say so. “你午餐吃得不错吧”她用悦耳的声音问道。我吃的牛排好极了,但这次我学乖了,还是不说为妙。

"Awful," I reported. "Some sort of sour fish. Eel, I think." “糟透了,”我报告说。“一种什么酸溜溜的鱼,我想大概是鳗鲡吧。”

"Good. Your college sons have hired their younger brothers and sisters and a couple of


"That's encouraging." “这确实令人鼓舞。”

"No, it's not," she corrected. "It's very discouraging. They're been as it for hours. Plastic bags have been filled and piled to the ceiling, but all this hasn't made a dent, not a dent, in the situation! It's almost as if the inserts keep reproducing themselves!" “不,并非如此,”她纠正说。“相反,非常叫人泄气。他们干了好几个小时了。装好的塑料袋,一直堆到天花板,但一切努力收效很小。这些广告宣传品简直就像是不停地自行生产出来一样!”

"Another thing," she continued. "Your college sons must learn that one does not get the best out of employees by threatening them with bodily harm. “还有一件事,”她接着说,“你那上大学的儿子必须明白,威胁雇员,说要揍他们,是不可能使他们卖力的。”

Obtaining an audience with son NO. 1, I snarled, "I'll kill you if threaten one of those kids again! Idiot! You should be offering a bonus of a dollar every hour to the worker who fills the most bags. 我跟大儿子一通上话,便咆哮道,“你如果再威胁那些孩子,我就对你不客气了!白痴!你应该给奖金,对装袋最多的工人每小时奖励一块。”

"But that would cut into our profit," he suggested. “可那要减少我们的利润啦,”他提醒道。"There won't be any profit unless those kids enable you to make all the deliveries on time. If they don't, you two will have to remove all that paper by yourselves. And there will be no eating or sleeping until it is removed." “那些孩子不帮你按时将所有的广告投送出去,你就什么利润也得不到。如果他们不干,你们俩就得亲手搬走所有的广告。而在把它们搬掉之前,你们吃不成,也睡不成。”

There was a short, thoughtful silence. Then he said, "Dad, you have just worked a profound change in my personality." 电话里出现了短暂的沉默,他在思考。接着,他说,“爸爸,你刚才使我深受启迪,令我恍然大悟。”

"Do it!" “那就干吧!”

"Yes, sir!" “是,阁下!”

By the following evening, there was much for my wife to report. The bonus program had worked until someone demanded to see the color of cash. 到第二天傍晚,我妻子就有许多事报告了。奖金计划行之有效,可后来有人对能否兑现表示怀疑,提出把钱拿出来给大家看看。

Then some activist on the work force claimed that the workers had no business settling for $5 and a few competitive bonuses while the bosses collected hundreds of dollars each. The organizer had declared that all the workers were entitled to $5 per hour! They would not work another minute until the bosses agreed. 接着工人队伍里的一位活动家声称,老板每人拿几百块钱,工人们决没有理由满足于每人五块外加一点点竞争性的奖金。劳工组织人宣布,所有工人的工资都应该达到每小时五块钱! 在老板答应之前,他们不再干活儿,一分钟也不干。

The strike lasted less than two hours. In mediation, the parties agreed on $2 per hour. Gradually, the huge stacks began to shrink. 罢工持续了不到两小时。通过调解,双方达成协议,每小时两块。渐渐地,大堆的广告开始减少。

As it turned out, the job was completed three hours before Sunday's 7 a.m. deadline. By the time I arrived home, the boys had already settled their accounts: $150 in labor costs, $40 for gasoline, and a like amount for gifts - boxes of candy for saintly neighbors who had volunteered station wagons and help in delivery and dozen roses for their mother. 结果,全部工作比最后限期星期日早晨七点提前三个小时完成。等我回到家里,孩子们已经结了账。劳务支出 150 元,汽油费40 元,还有 40 元买礼品——几盒糖果,送给乐于助人的邻居,他们主动开出自家的车帮助投递,还有一打玫瑰送给他们的母亲。

This left them with $185 each - about two-thirds the minimum wage for the 91 hours they worked.


All went well for some weeks. Then one Saturday morning my attention was drawn to the odd goings-on of our two youngest sons. They kept carrying carton after carton from various corners of the house out the front door to curbside. 几个星期过去了,一切都很好。后来,一个星期六的上午,我们两个小儿子的奇怪举动引起了我的注意。他们不停地将一个又一个的纸箱从房屋四处的角落里搬出,经过前门,送到人行道边。

I assumed their mother had enlisted them to remove junk for a trash pickup. Then I overheard them discussing finances. 我以为他们的妈妈在指挥他们清除破烂,好让垃圾车运走呢。正在这时,我听到他们在议论经济问题。

"Geez, we're going to make a lot of money!" “哟,我们会赚许多钱呢!”

"We're going to be rich!" “我们要发财啦!”

Investigation revealed that they were offering " for sale or rent" our entire library. 经查问发现,他们正在把我们的全部图书“出售或出租”。

"No! No!" I cried. "You can't sell our books!" “不成!不成!”我叫道。“不能把我们的书卖了!”"Geez, Dad, we thought you were done with them!" “哎唷,爸,我们以为你用不着它们了呢!”"You're never 'done' with books," I tried to explain. “书永远不会'用'不着的,”我尽力解释道。

"Sure you are. You read them, and you're done with them. That's it. Then you might as well make a little money from them. We wanted to avoid the indignity of having to ask you for……"“你肯定用不着了。你都看过了,再也不用了。没有错。既然不用,还不如卖点钱。我们想避免那种有失尊严的事,不再伸手向你要……”

Unit 2


Is there anything we can learn from deer? During the "energy crisis" of 1973-1974 the writer of this essay was living in northern Minnesota and was able to observe how deer survive when winter arrives. The lessons he learns about the way deer conserve energy turn out applicable to our everyday life. 有什么是我们能从鹿身上学到的吗在 1973-1974 年的“能源危机”期间,本文作者正住在明尼苏达北部,能够观察当冬天来临时,鹿如何生存。他从鹿储存能量的方法上得到的经验也能够运用到我们的日常生活中。



Some persons say that love makes the world go round. Others of a less romantic and more practical turn of mind say that it isn't love; it's money. But the truth is that it is energy that makes the world go round. 有些人说,爱情驱使世界运转;另一些并不那么罗曼蒂克而更为注重实际的人则说,不是爱情,而是金钱。但真实情况是,能量驱使世界运转。

Energy is the currency of the ecological system and life becomes possible only when food is converted into energy, which in turn is used to seek more food to grow, to reproduce and to survive. On this cycle all life depends. 能量是生态系统的货币,只有当食物转变为能量,能量再用来获取更多的食物以供生长、繁殖和生存,生命才成为可能。所有生命都维系在这一循环上。It is fairly well known that wild animals survive from year to year by eating as much as they can during times of plenty, the summer and fall, storing the excess, usually in the form of fat, and then using these reserves of fat to survive during the hard times in winter

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