Superstitions 72

download Superstitions 72

of 23

Transcript of Superstitions 72

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    aaannnddd111222OOOttthhheeerrr SSShhhooorrrtttEEEssssssaaayyysssfffooorrr EEEnnngggllliiissshhhCCClllaaasssssseeesss


    Edith Fiam ingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72




    To my mother, Ana Elsa Vil,

    who gave me the gift of life

    and showed me the gift of writing.

    To my uncle, Filiberto Antonino Fiamingo,

    a generous man

    who writes and writes and writes.

    To my niece, Laura Maribel Recalde,

    who could easily become a professional writer.

    To my special you, just because.


  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72




    Being superstitious is no fun, writing is. I have written these essays as a

    student and used them as a teacher in my classes, sometimes as samples of essay

    writing, sometimes as discussion topics. Now it is time to share them with you. If

    you are a teacher, you are allowed to use them freely in your classes quoting the

    source. If you are a reader, just enjoy.


  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Lucky charms and a little abracadabra may be just what we need to ease us

    through the tensions of the modern world, says Elaine Kahn, the New York City

    psychologist and author of1,001 Ways You Reveal Your Personality. She thinks that

    superstitions relax us because we feel we are doing something to help ourselves.

    Her views remind us of the fact that through superstitions human beings manage to

    experience a sense of security.

    Confronted with stressing situations, such as exams or job interviews, people

    tend to resort to a variety of systems in order to feel relaxed. Some may carry a

    lucky charm in their pockets, maybe a rabbit s foot, an old coin or even a religious

    image. Others will make the sign of the cross and say a prayer before the frightening

    event. While others, yet, will promise to let their hair grow waist-length, if they pass

    the exam or get the job.

    Other systems, however, are used to enhance one s possibilities of making

    economic profit. Those who usually bet on lottery numbers have a handful of tricks

    to secure them grains. Dreaming, for instance, may constitute a rich source of data,

    since there is a ready-made list of correspondences between dreams and numbers.

    Besides, anniversaries and birthday dates, license plate numbers, addresses and

    bus tickets numbers are some other useful sources to make bets.

    When insecurity reaches the extreme of wanting to know what the future will

    bring about, people resort to specialists who can give them professional advice.

    Astrologers, tarot cards interpreters, tea leaves readers and fortune tellers can

    predict success or failure in sentimental or financial affairs. These predictions fosterthe illusion of a guaranteed future, where on will be able to avoid catastrophes or

    resign oneself to face the inevitable.

    No matter how simple or complicated, how pagan or religious superstitions

    may be, they are serve one purpose to avoid the unavoidable, to secure the

    insecurable, to predict the unpredictable. They are, in fact, the walking stick used by

    human beings to support themselves in their unsteady path through life.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    And then, the lights came on again

    The flat was beautiful. I was glad I had been able to move after having waited

    for so many years. I was very happy and thought that this was an excellent occasion

    to give a party. So I arranged everything for it I decorated the flat, prepared a wide

    variety of cold dishes and cakes and invited all my friends to a house-warming party.

    The day of the party, most of the people I had invited turned up. I showed

    them the flat which was not large but at least well decorated-, and then we spent

    lots of happy hours talking, eating, dancing, playing games until suddenly the lightswent out.

    At first we solved the situation by lighting some candles, which only lasted an

    hour during which the lights did not come on. As everybody began to feel a bit

    sleepy, my friends thought they had better go home. The problem was that the flat

    was on a nineteenth floor and I did not have a torch for them to light their way down.

    Besides I could not borrow one from a neighbour because it was a new block of flats

    and I had been the first owner who had moved in. Although it was risky to go downin the dark, one of my friends, Edward, politely offered to go and fetch the torch he

    had in his car.

    As one hour had passed and he had not come back, we inferred that

    something had happened to him and decided to go. We went downstairs cautiously

    and got to the hall where we found that the door had been locked. I did not have the

    key because Edward had taken it with him and had mysteriously disappeared. I

    remembered, then, that there was another door in the garage through which we

    would be able to get out, so we made our way towards it. We reached the garage

    entrance and, as some friends began to say good-bye to me and others were offering

    me a room in their houses, the lights came on again!

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Collection Of Marbles

    When my cousin Alex was a little boy, he was just like anyone of us he liked

    to play any game for hours on end, being in this way one of our best play-mates. He

    was always eager to play hide and seek, football, tennis or any other game, but the

    situation changed when he discovered the exhilarating pleasure of playing marbles.

    Marbles became the core of his life. Although we tried to persuade him to play

    hopscotch, to run bicycle races or to spend an afternoon at the Public Garden of our

    neighbourhood, he always replied in the same, I don t play anything but marbles,

    that s the only game I enjoy. If you wish, you may come home to play marbles with

    me. Hence, while we were playing outside, in contact with nature and sunshine, he

    stayed in his room counting and recounting the marbles which he had bought with his

    pocket-money, calculating the number of marbles he would buy with the money he

    would receive from his dear aunt Alice, watching them carefully to find if one had a

    stain of green the others had not, to see how beautiful they were and to think of his

    friends envy at realising that his collection kept growing. He used to spend hours

    thinking of the way in which he could enlarge his collection, and discovered that the

    best manner to do so was by perfecting his techniques for outwitting his opponents,

    and so, add their marbles to his collection.

    At the beginning, all of us found his marble contests very exciting, but then we

    considered that being defeated and deprived of our marbles by Alex, the skilled

    marble player, was not amusing and so we began to leave him alone with his

    harmful obsession with collecting marbles.

    After some weeks, Alex began to feel that playing alone with marbles was notas amusing as playing with a group of children. Therefore, he decided to share his

    marbles with us and agreed to play any game we wanted. Anyway, we played

    marbles from time to time, not as a competition but as a pastime.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Everybody Wears A Mask

    The fact that we all wear masks was recognised by T. S. Eliot in Prufrock

    when he wrote that we put a face to meet the faces that we meet. We see faces

    everywhere our neighbours our co-workers , our teachers , our students , only to

    mention a few. Each of them performs a certain role in relation to us. Consequently,

    we fail to understand the complexities of other people s selves because they all

    wear masks to adapt themselves to different circumstances and to protect

    themselves from their fears.

    Circumstances are a conditioning factor in life. A man, for instance, may be a

    very affectionate and responsible father, who helps his children with their homework

    and, after that, plays cowboys and Indians with them. This man is also a strict boss

    at work, who expects all his employees to arrive on time and reprimands them if they

    do not, and who expects all of them to do their work efficiently and quickly. When he

    goes to play paddle tennis at his club, he is the showman of the group, the one who

    tells jokes and plays tricks with cards. In these three roles, he may be pinned down

    as affectionate, severe or funny. Each person gets a partial image of him, that is,

    everyone sees a different mask.

    However, masks are not only a means of adapting oneself to the

    circumstances but also a protective shield to face others. It may be said that an

    affectionate attitude towards one s children might protect oneself from fear of not

    being loved, a strict attitude towards one s employees might suggest fear of being

    disobeyed and a funny attitude might be covering one s inherent fear of ridicule.

    Thus, true feelings of fear are covered by masks of love, strictness and fun.

    Ortega y Gasset said that man is the sum of himself and his circumstances

    and Freud proved that fears are repressed in the unconscious. They were, in a way,

    focusing on the existence of a mask, or rather, of masks worn by everybody.

    Undoubtedly, masks are a useful means of adaptation and protection for human


    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Fashion - to be "in"or not

    Show-windows display the latest fashion for all to see clothes, shoes,

    accessories are combined in innovative ways so as to catch the passers-by s eyes.

    A quick glance at the windows is enough to confirm the fact that the colors, the

    design, the patterns, the length of the clothes for the new season are different from

    what one is wearing. Hence, one is no longer in. However, being dressed

    according to the latest fashion is not a simple matter for most people.

    There are, of course, those lucky few who can adapt their wardrobes to the

    whims of fashion because they can afford new clothes very season. For them,

    storing their old-fashioned clothes is a matter-of-course event. Striped suits and

    miniskirts end up in a spare closet and suits in solid colours and heel-length skirts

    come to replace them.

    Others, who would also like to replace their out-of-fashion clothes, find it much

    harder, though. They have to resign themselves to wearing their out-of-date

    garments until they save up enough money to buy new ones. They cut down

    expenses no more sodas, cakes, cookies or candies, no more week-end outings or

    dinners out either. But these sacrifices are worthy because they can finally wear the

    fashionable striking colours and the latest fashion cowboy style boots.

    As soon as most people are wearing whatever is fashionable, shop-windows

    have already started to display something different, in their never ending process of

    renewal. The race against fashion has started again and, for many, being in is

    nothing more than a utopic dream.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    How to Get A Raise

    Several conditions must be met in order to get a raise. You must wait for the

    right moment to ask for it and, when the opportunity comes, show evidence of

    deserving it.

    Reasons such as my mother is sick, the rent has gone up, my wife is

    pregnant are not valid at all. Raises are not given because employees need more

    money in order to cope with personal economic needs. What is more, you cannot

    expect to get a raise for doing the job you have been hired to do the way it should be

    done. An outstanding performance or increased responsibilities are basic

    requirements for an increase in pay.

    It is also basic to find the right time to ask for a raise. You cannot possibly get

    up one Monday morning and say to oneself, Today is the day. I will talk to Mr.

    Brown first thing in the morning. Bosses do not like surprises. It is wiser to wait for

    your performance evaluation sheet. Then, you can focus on your achievements and

    discuss the possibility of taking on more responsibility and thus aspire to get a higher


    To conclude, personal issues are out of the question when finding reasons get

    a better salary. Surpassing one s bosses expectations and being able to take on

    more responsibility constitute the key for getting a raise. These combined with good

    timing will surely get you those extra bucks you were after.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Life begins at 40

    People have always been concerned with the origin of life. Whereas some

    say it begins the moment someone is born, others affirm it starts nine months before

    that-at the moment of conception. There are those who argue that life, from the point

    of view of its enjoyment, begins at forty and those who say that it s too late.

    On the one hand, healthy forty-year-old people are young enough to enjoy

    themselves. They are mature and experienced, so they can assess situations and

    deal with them. Also they can also deal in romantic situations with skill. What is

    more, they can enjoy the fruits of their labors, both at home and at work. It s great to

    feel they are at the height of their mental powers. They are relaxed because theycan see clearly the direction their life is taking and they have a settled existence.

    On the other hand, there are those who believe that, even if they are healthy,

    they have lost most of their youthful vigor and energy. The fact that they can predict

    exactly what each day is going to bring rests excitement from their lives. They have

    become bourgeois and conservative. They don t look good as they are putting on

    weight, losing their hair, going gray or their eyesight is failing. Even if they have

    amassed possessions, they do not produce enjoyment but add responsibilities andworries to their lives.

    To conclude, every stage in life has its advantages and disadvantages. The

    glass will always be half-full or half-empty. It is all a matter of perspective. After all,

    it s your life.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    No More Hunger in Cuba

    In Third World countries, many people go hungry, even starve, every day.

    However, this is not due to a shortage of food, but to an uneven distribution of

    wealth. The Cuban Revolution can be considered one of the isolated efforts to put anend to this social inequality. Fidel Castro said it s true that with this system of

    distribution, those in privileged positions will now be less privileged, but those who

    are hard-up... will radically improve their situation. The generation of employment

    and the implementation of a rationing system succeeded in eliminating hunger from


    The revolutionary leadership viewed inadequate income as the reason for

    malnutrition. Consequently, the government set out a plan to generate employment.To begin with, sugar plantation workers were employed during the dead season in

    construction projects, such as roads, schools, clinics, government offices and

    housing. The government also set up an agrarian reform including grants of land to

    farmers and freeing sharecroppers from the obligation of paying part of their produce

    to absentee landowners. Once the level of employment was raised, there was more

    money in more pockets.

    However, some pockets were still fuller than others, so it was necessary toimplement a rationing system to ensure equality in eating. This system, which has

    survived to this day, includes everyone regardless of occupation, residence or

    income. It is based on the issuance of a ration book including a monthly food

    basket to be supplied to each household. Basic consumer goods are sold at low,

    fixed prices. Different nutritional needs are also taken into account according to age,

    kind of work and special diets prescribed by doctors to pregnant women, underweight

    children and those people suffering from diseases such as ulcers, diabetes andanemia. Besides the basic ration, there are other goods which can be purchased in

    the free market at higher prices, of course.

    As Wayne Smith, Chief of U.S. Interest Section in Havana from 1979 to 1982,

    observed the Revolution has met the basic needs of all. There is no one who goes

    hungry. It can be said that a better income increased Cubans purchasing power

    and that the rationing system allowed them to have a better diet. The elimination of

    hunger is an undeniable achievement of the Cuban Revolution.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Public Transport

    To tell the truth, public transport is far from being an efficient service for the

    community. Unable to run the cost of commuting to work by car, the poor and the

    impoverished middle class have to undergo the sufferings inflicted upon them when

    they travel by bus, train or subway.

    Travelling by bus is both dangerous and uncomfortable. On the one hand,

    passengers are at the mercy of reckless bus drivers who not only brake suddenly

    and make people stumble and fall upon one another but also do not give passengers

    enough time to get off. On the other hand, buses are so crowded during the rush

    hour that passengers have to wait at the bus stops for a long time before being able

    to get on a not so fully packed us.

    Trains are not better. They are even more crowded than buses, to the extent

    that passengers sometimes have to get off through the windows. But even worse is

    the fact that train employees go on strike without giving previous notice. Once at the

    station passengers learn that either drivers or signalmen are on strike, so they must

    look for an alternative way of travelling and they consequently arrive late at work.

    One of such alternative means of transport is the subway. However, it is also

    unreliable because it may stop between two stations if there is a power-cut and it

    does not work if it gets flooded because of heavy rain. A further disadvantage is that

    subways are terribly noisy, which makes it impossible to carry on a conversation

    while they are moving.

    In short, being pushed and shoved in tightly packed buses, trains and

    subways, waiting at bus stops for hours, getting late to work, getting trapped in a

    subway and putting up with terribly noise are just to mention a few of the daily

    inconveniences brought about by public transport.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72




    It was early October when I met Tom. I had been sent to do an auditing job at

    the San Bernardino branch of the bank. He worked in the accounting department

    and I felt attracted to him as soon as I saw him he had a radiant smile and sparks

    were coming out of his eyes; he looked at me in a way that spoke louder than words.

    After work I met him in the car park; my car would not start so he gave me a

    lift. A few hours later the doorbell rang it was him. He had come to take me for a

    ride; he said he could not miss the view of Moreno Valley on that wonderful moonlit

    night. I said I had work to do but he would not hear. He took me by the hand and I

    gave in. We drove up Bib Bear. The view from the top was fabulous, there were

    twinkling lights everywhere but I was dazzled by the sparks coming from his eyes.

    The next thing I know is I was in his arms. I had already forgotten how it felt to be

    hugged, to be kissed, to be stroked; seven years had gone by since my husbands

    death. He wanted to drive to Las Vegas and get married right away. I thought we

    should not rush but I must admit I felt flattered. The next day he moved in. We spent

    all the day together at work followed by blissful nights. It was frightening to see how

    much I needed him. It seemed those mournful years of loneliness were over. I was

    having fun, I was being loved, I was under his spell.

    It had been hard for me to leave my son, Nick, behind in New York, but it had

    seemed unreasonable to have him change school for only two months. Life seemed

    perfect, Nick had come over for Thanksgiving and we would start a new life in

    California. I was cooking a turkey when the phone rang. It was a call for Tom. A few

    minutes later, he came downstairs carrying his skiing equipment. He told me to

    apologize to our guests but he wanted to go skiing. I said he could not do so. He

    said it was just a weekend, that he loved me and he would be back on Monday.

    As soon as he left, I packed and woke Nick up. As we drove away, I felt a

    lump in my throat, I turned round and looked at our cozy house for the last time.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    To marry - early in life or later

    It is often said that there is an adequate age for marriage. While many people

    believe that one should marry early in life, others favour a later marriage as a wiser

    choice. Marriage is by no means a trivial matter it requires maturity, economic

    solvency and capacity to handle responsibility, which are most commonly found in

    one s late twenties or after that age.

    Most people in their early twenties are still growing biologically and

    psychologically. Getting married at this age would add pressures and demands

    which would greatly interfere with their education and professional growth.

    Furthermore, their psychological immaturity could seriously hinder their making a

    suitable adjustment to marriage. Conversely, those who have already graduated and

    succeeded in inserting themselves into working life will probably feel less pressed

    and could thus adapt their lives easier to their new situation.

    There are people who believe that younger couples marry because they love

    each other passionately. They are ready to overcome any and all barriers (ranging

    from lack of money to parental opposition) and even these problems seem to

    reinforce the strength of their bond. While this view is popular, it is incomplete since

    ideals may be shattered by everyday reality when they find that their experience in

    life is generally limited to matters of adolescence and they are unable to make ends

    meet or their parents give them the cold shoulder. In contrast, people in their late

    twenties have already achieved some kind of economic solvency and tend to be less

    dependent on their parents judgment and opinions

    Of course, for those who are in love getting married is something which theyfind difficult to postpone because they cannot wait to live together. However, it would

    be more sensible to postpone marriage until the conditions which would make their

    life easier are given so that their relationship will not be spoiled by unfavourable

    external circumstances. Therefore, people who are more experienced in issues

    dealing with a much broader and more adult spectrum of life will be in a more

    favourable position to marry.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Trapped in A Lift

    I would never have dreamt that ones plans could be twisted in such an

    unpredictable way until I got trapped in a lift. Last Saturday morning, I phoned my

    friend Pat and arranged that I would be at her flat at 7 o clock to go to the cinema.

    When I arrived at the block of flats where she lives, I did not buss because the

    front door was open, entered the building and took the lift together with an old lady

    and a young couple with their two little children. After the young man had pressed

    the buttons for the fourth, eighth and seventeenth floors, the door shut and the lift

    started to go up. As usual, I was looking up at the red-lighted numbers which

    indicated the floor where we were, and noticed that the lift stopped at the fourth floor

    where I had to get out but the door remained shut. The young man pressed the

    button which was supposed to get the door open and, as nothing happened, he

    pressed all the other buttons but the lift refused to move. As there was no

    emergency button, we tried to open the door by hand but it proved impossible.

    We decided to wait patiently for the lift to start moving until the old lady began

    to say that we would all be dead very soon if we were not rescued, but that we ought

    to resign ourselves because God knows when and how every human being has to

    die. The children began to feel afraid and to cry loudly, and the couple and I started

    to get nervous.

    Finally, we began to knock on the door asking for help until we were heard by

    the janitor who rescued us by breaking the outer door of the lift. When I got out, I

    went to Pat s flat after an hour and a half s delay, which had left me with no mind to

    see a film.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Turning Over A New Leaf

    Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. All

    these days of the week were almost the same to me, except for the fact that I did not

    have to go to college on Saturday and Sunday. I used to study every day even on

    the weekend I would go to my best friend s house to study with her instead of going

    out together.

    Even though one might think that such endeavour would necessarily yield a

    good result, this was not the case. My being so cut off from the world, from

    entertainment, from taking a rest, made me feel very depressed, sad, tired,

    melancholic, and worst of all, I began to find it difficult to talk not only in foreign

    languages but also in my own.

    The only worthwhile solution to these problems was to turn over a new leaf, to

    make an effort to change, to organise myself better in order to find some free time.

    So, on New Year s Eve, I vowed that I would attempt to do everything concerning my

    career during week-days and to spend the weekends performing extra-class tasks.

    I could not prove my ability to fulfill my promise until classes began but,already during the summer holidays, my physical and psychological state had partly

    improved. I began to feel less tired and depressed, was able to communicate better

    than before and had almost overcome the sadness and melancholy that had

    overwhelmed me.

    Classes began and since then I have always been able to pay attention to the

    courses while finding some free hours for myself. I have gone out with my friend,

    watched some television programmes, seen several films and gone to the theatre.

    I have been able to turn over a new leaf. There is always a possibility of

    changing, of improving, if we make and effort to find the way in which it can be done,

    and the inner will to do so.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Bonus: First Draft

    A Man Is Known By The Company He Keeps

    I have always heard people say that a man is known by the company he

    keeps and I have believed it until something that happened to me a very short time

    ago made me change my opinion.

    One of my neighbours, Robert, used to be with other boys of his same age

    who seemed to be very irresponsible, childish, rude and even insolent looking.

    These boys were always joking, saying disrespectful things as one passed by them

    and staring at everybody defiantly and insolently. Consequently, I tried to avoid

    meeting all of them and disliked them deeply. One day I had the misfortune of taking

    the lift with Robert. Suddenly, the lights went out and we got trapped in it. After a

    few minutes of being silent in the darkness, he began to talk to me. At first, I was

    somewhat reluctant, but then I began to talk freely - something deep in myself was

    telling me that he was not so bad as his friends

    We engaged in conversation and he told me that he had never dared to talk to

    me because he was very shy but that he had observed me. He said that he had

    noticed that I did not like his friends and that they were bothering me. After

    apologising for their behaviour, he explained that they were not bad boys but that

    they had not been well brought up by their parents. He said he was with them

    because he felt alone, they had accepted him as part of their gang and they had

    become his only company.

    On that occasion, he told me lots of things about his life, which I heard in

    amazement. Never before had he dared to talk to me because he was shy, but

    darkness made him feel more at ease. His mother had died when he was a little boy

    and, as his father was very busy, he did not pay much attention to him. He went to

    school but, in the afternoon, he did not know what to do to pass the time. He felt very

    alone and these boys were the only friends he had. Although they were rude and

    insolent with the other people, they were good to him.

    From that day I decided to never again look down on anyone because of

    circumstantial events.

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Bonus: Parallel Writing

    Your Business is My Business

    Karen J ones and J ane Thomas meet at a conference dealing with sales techniques.

    J ane: Excuse me. Is this seat taken?

    Karen: Oh, no. Go right ahead.

    J ane: I really like your lipstick.

    Karen: You do. Its Wet and Wild. In fact, I represent this company. By the way, myname is Karen J ones.

    J ane: Nice to meet you, Daren. Im J ane Thomas.

    Karen: Nice to meet you too, Miss Thomas.

    J ane: Please, call me J ane. Your company has a good name on the cosmeticstrade.

    Karen: Oh, thanks. To tell you the truth, I havent been there long. But I think Ivealready caught the Sales Managers eye. Im looking forward to a promotion ina couple of months or so.

    J ane: That sounds great, Karen. And what kind of job are you going to do then?

    Karen: I expect to become a group leader in no time. I feel so excited about it.

    J ane: It certainly is exciting. I guess this conference will help us a lot in our careers,although I dont think you need it.

    Karen: Oh, but theres always something new. Have you attended Mrs. Clarkslecture?

    J ane: Yes, I have.

    Karen: How did you like it?

    J ane: It was wonderful. Very interesting indeed. She presented very innovativetechniques. There were things I had never thought of before.

    Karen: Huh-huh.

    J ane: And the way she put them. She sounded so natural and convincing. I onlywish I were like her. Thats a talented saleswoman.

    Karen: Oh, dont say that. Im sure you could be like her, if you tried.

    J ane: And I will. I also liked what Miss Dickinson said.

    Karen: By the way, I see youre not wearing your conference button.

    J ane: Its because it doesnt match my clothes. Hello, Nancy.

    Karen: Oh, do you know her?

    J ane: We do a lot of business together.

    Karen: One of my friends nearly lost her job yesterday because our boss saw hertalking to that woman. Her names Nancy Roberts, isnt it? And shes thesales manager of Mary Kay. They are our biggest rivals.

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    J ane: I suppose they must be, but your bosss attitude seems rather extreme.Theres nothing wrong in talking to somebody from a different company. Yourcompetitors dont need to be your enemies.

    Karen: Of course not. The point was our boss was frightened that she would tell Mrs.Roberts our business secrets. That woman is very cunning, they say. Sheinvited our representative to lunch, so we can guess what her real idea was.

    She wanted to find out about our new formulas.

    J ane: Would you like a bar of chocolate?

    Karen: I really shouldnt. I dont want to put on weight.

    J ane: But this is diet chocolate. It has only ten calories per serving. Have some.

    Karen: In that case, I will. Thank you.

    J ane: Now, you were telling me about that new formula.

    Karen: Oh, was I? But perhaps I shouldnt say any more. After all, youre one of Mrs.Roberts customers.

    J ane: But I could easily become yours, if we saw some advantage in it.

    Karen: Its just that weve found some new components that will make our products thecheapest in the market.

    J ane: Oh, your products will be very interesting to a company like mine. The publiccant always tell the difference in quality, but they can always recognise adifference in price.

    Karen: Oh, no. Besides being the cheapest, they will be the best. Our creams willmake the skin softer than ever.

    J ane: And what about wrinkles? Do you have anything for wrinkles? Ive started tohave some wrinkles. Look! Isnt it awful?

    Karen: Oh, its terrible. But I happen to have a sample here by chance. Why dont youtry it? It will remove your wrinkles in a week, ten days at the most.

    J ane: Oh, no. I shouldnt take it. I feel ashamed.

    Karen: Please, take it. It will be of great help to you.

    J ane: Thanks a lot. These new Egyptian products are miraculous!

    Karen: They arent Egyptian. They are Indian. Some of them are taken from the fertileearth of the north and others from some roots from the south. Why dont we

    go and have a cup of coffee?J ane: Not now, I have to make a telephone call. Maybe some other time. It has

    been very nice talking to you... And thank you for the cream.

    Karen: Youre welcome. Bye. What a pleasant person! I wonder which company sherepresents. Lets see if I find her name here. Thomas, J ane. SalesManager. Mary Kay Ltd. Oh, no!

    Edith Fiamingo 2013

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72




    I hope you have enjoyed reading these thirteen essays, plus the bonuses. Let

    me tell you about them. The first draft A Man Is Known By The Company He Keeps

    is almost an essay. I was lazy enough not to rewrite it to fit the academic writing

    format. You are invited to do so and mail me your version to

    [email protected].

    The dialogue Your Business is My Business was based on a dialogue in the

    book First Certificate English, 1. Language and Composition by W.S. Fowler

    published by Nelson, UK in 1973, rewritten to fit the profile of two women whose

    task was to perform it as the final requirement to pass a Diction class. I enjoyed the

    experience thoroughly and have learned to value the performing arts much more

    after living the experience myself.

    I have used the A4 format to simplify printing multiple copies for classes. Feel

    free to print it all, bind it and use it in your classes.

    Finally, to those who have never written, I would encourage them to do so, it is

    both entertaining and fun. Then publish and let the world enjoy. Cordially,


  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72




    2 Dedication

    3 Foreword

    4 Superstitions

    5 And then, the lights came on again

    6 Collection of Marbles

    7 Everybody Wears A Mask

    8 Fashion - to be "in" or not

    9 How To Get A Raise

    10 Life begins at 40

    11 No More Hunger In Cuba

    12 Public Transport

    13 Sparks

    14 To marry - early in life or later

    15 Trapped In A Lift

    16 Turning Over A New Leaf

    17 Bonus. First Draft . A Man Is Known By The Company He Keeps

    18 Bonus. Parallel Writing. Your Business is My Business

    21 Epilogue

  • 8/23/2019 Superstitions 72



    Superstitions... and 12 Other Short Essays for English Classes

    Published in internet by

    Edith Fiamingo

    Front cover by Edith Fiamingo, Mirando la luna, monocopia 23.5 x 33.3 cm. (All rights


    Copyright Edith Fiamingo 2013

    All rights reserved

    Every part of this publication may be copied, reproduced or transmitted in any form or

    by any means, just mentioning the author/publisher.