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Showing posts from October, 2012

Four Pound of Pork Every Day

There was once a mandarin in China who was in the habit of eating four pounds of pork every day.

One of his underlings said, “He was a happy man to be able to eat so much, and to have so much to eat.”

Another answered, “ Four pounds is nothing, I could eat as much if I had it.”

The mandarin, overhearing the boast, demanded that the speaker should prove his words by eating the four pounds in his presence daily for a whole year. If he utterly failed he was to have a hundred blows.

For the first month the man succeeded, but afterwards had to come down to three and a half, and eventually to one and a half pounds. He was beaten correspondingly. Soon he could take very little, and the full hundred blows were inflicted daily. This was as expensive as painful, for he had to fee his prosecutors two hundred cash a day to " lay it on lightly."

Anecdotes of Tung Fang-so

A Recluse at Court. Tung Fang-so's original surname was Chang (张). Owing to his eccentric and humorous behavior at the Han court, his nickname was Guji ("Buffoon"). He proclaimed himself the first "recluse at court". When fellow courtiers called him crazy, he replied, "People like me are known as those who escape the world by taking it easy at court."
The Cackling Magpie. The Emperor Wu of Han was one day a showery day having a feast with some of his courtiers, when Tung Fang-so appeared under the dripping eaves, holding a weapon in his hand. On the Emperor asking the reason of his appearance, Tung Fang-so smiled, and said he had been sent for by the Supreme, who told him there was a magpie on a withered cypress behind the palace cackling vigorously toward the East. "So I was commanded to go and find out the reason of the noise it was making."

"And how should you know ? " asked the Emperor, who had risen from the now finished feas…

The Country Mosquitos And The Town Mosquitoes

The country mosquitoes once invited their cousins of the town to a banquet. Plenty of human flesh was provided, but it was thick-skinned and tough.

Town manners, however, made it necessary to return the invitation. On their way back the town-bred connoisseurs of flesh consulted as to what was to be done. Mosquito-nets were on the increase, and country cousins are so voracious. There would be no food left for the hosts.

'Take them to the temples,' suggested the wisest of them.

The suggestion was received with buzzing acclamation. The guests came, and had to try the points of their knives and lancets upon gilded and painted skin. They declared, however, with all politeness, that they had enjoyed the repast, but inwardly resolved never to invite or accept such invitations again.

The little Dwarf and Invisible Hat

According to the country folk in middle China, many a district is blessedly haunted by a certain personage, for whose pleasure they are used to set aside a little bowl of rice now and then. They strive to avoid hurting his feelings by cautioning their children against tying empty egg-shells on the ends of a stick when playing with water, seeing which, the dwarf -- for he is a very tiny little fellow -- might think they were stealing his buckets.

This tiny little fellow was called Grandfather Three (San Ye, 三爷) is invisible. The discovery of his existence happened on this wise.

An ox-boy was once hitting his beast with a bamboo whip. As he did so, he saw a tiny hat fall to the ground, and a dwarf run away for fear of receiving a second blow. He picked up the hat, put it on, and went home.

" Rice is ready ! " cried his mother, as she saw the ox come back, but where was her lad?

"Here!" he shouted.

"Where?"

"Standing in the doorway," was the reply…

Perforated Chest Kingdom

The ancient Mountain and Sea Classic recorded a Perforated Chest Kingdom.

It says that a far away land in the south beyongd sea, a kingdom called Perforated Chest Kindom. The people have holes in their chests, which render the use of the sedan chair unnecessary; the wealthier of them being transported from place to place by means of a bamboo passed through the said hole.

The Encyclopedia Bo Wu Zhi presents the origin of this kingdom. The Perforated Chest tribe is the descendant of two ministers of Fang Feng.

Yu the Great summoned all the gods to the great assembly on Mount Mao in Kuai-ji, one of them, the chieftain of Fang feng tribe hesitated and came too late. Yu the Great had him executed.

Later, when Yu traveled in a dragon carriage, and passed by Fang-feng’s territory. Two Fang-feng’s ministers wanted to revenge for their lord, so they shoot Yu with an arrow. Then the storm blew up and the dragons rose up and left. The two officers, terrified, stabbed themselves with daggers in …