Saturday, March 20, 2010

Alexander the Great, Porus and the Walls of Jericho.

The Alexander-Porus confrontation happened long, long ago, in July 326 BC if you want the exact date. Does it really matter now? Is it really necessary for a school student to mug it up? In the 1962 movie Anpadh (literally “uneducated”), the young Kalu (Mohan Choti) wonders about it so much that finally he breaks into a song: “Sikandar ne Porus se ki thi ladaai/ Jo ki thi ladaai to mein kya karun?” (If Alexander the Great fought Porus [once upon a time] where do I come in?”) In other words, do I need to even know about it? Point taken. Which brings me to the Walls of Jericho. A school super drops into little Johnny’s classroom unannounced. “Who broke down the Walls of Jericho?” is his rather stern query to Johnny. “I don’t know,” confesses Johnny, “But it wasn’t me.” Appalled by the student’s lack of basic Bible knowledge, the super marches up to the school principal’s office to report the matter only to hear him say: “I know little Johnny and his family and can vouch for them. If he says he didn’t do it, I believe him.” Even more incensed by the school head’s ignorance, the super goes to the regional head of education and spills the beans. After listening to the complaint, that worthy says soothingly: “Take it easy. Why don’t we call for three quotes and get the darn wall fixed? Our insurance will cover us.” (P.S.: In the alternative version, little Johnny’s dad offers to get the wall fixed.) Just in case you’re wondering who really did it, it was Joshua, the son of Nun, according to Elvis Presley. Good ol' Josh did it with his 12-foot spear when he went into battle. Some infidels say the Walls were washed away by rain, though. Others claim they never existed.

P.S.: Finally comes my “Eureka!” moment with Jef Mallett’s Frazz in the Calendar section (p. D15) of Los Angeles Times, Thursday, April 8, 2010:

Mrs Olsen: '8) Define “platitude”.’

Caulfield: 'A duck-billed, web-footed mammal’s approach to life.’

C to Frazz: 'She gives me a word I don’t need. I give her a definition she doesn’t need.

Frazz to C: 'You give, you get.’ (Please search by date.)