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Political Satire: The Old Man of the Mountain (8)

Discussion in 'Political Humor' started by reedak, Dec 17, 2017.

  1. reedak

    reedak Well-Known Member

    May 1, 2014
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    Narrator: The priest detected a foul odour which grew stronger as he walked along a mountain pass. He asked a man who was chopping wood nearby.

    Priest: Hi! Do you know where the stench comes from?

    Woodcutter (speaking in a hoarse voice through a surgical mask): It originates from hundreds of cesspools in the valley ahead.

    Priest: What an awful lot of cesspools! Why the need for so many cesspools?

    Woodcutter: On the other side of the two mountains live two tribes who are at odds on almost everything with the tribe here. A few decades ago, the three tribes agreed to establish a buffer zone by constructing hundreds of cesspools or cesspits in the valley. Each cesspool is a metre in diameter and seven metres deep, and was originally covered with a slab. Since their construction, many tribal members have treated them as open pit toilets in their backyards without covering them after use. As a result, the awful smell of sewage pervades the air.

    Priest: It is surprising that the people here can bear with the stink for so many years. Don't they do something about it?

    Woodcutter: My leader has sought cooperation from his two counterparts to get rid of all the cesspools but they refuse to do so because they can use the cesspools to ward off any attack by our tribe. For instance, by throwing a lighted torch into a cesspool, they can ignite the flammable fumes and cause a massive explosion. Moreover, they don't care much about the stench as the wind is blowing towards this side all year round.

    Priest: Have any other ways been tried to solve the problem?

    Woodcutter: My leader has also sought cooperation from the other side to cover all the cesspools, but his two counterparts are not very keen on the idea. They pledge measures in fight for clean air but they still keep a number of cesspools open for "the big business" of their people.

    Priest: It looks like the problem could never be resolved as long as there are distrust, self-interest and hostility between the two opposing sides.

    Woodcutter: The problem may be resolved one day when the tribal leaders on the other side wake up to the reality of toxic fumes from the cesspools invading their homes and killing their people.

    Priest: Well, your people have to wait patiently for that fine day. Thanks for opening my eyes to the disastrous consequences of man's folly. Now I am going to continue my journey across the buffer zone.

    Woodcutter: You'd better not venture into that hell. The whole damned place is in a state of neglect. As it is overgrown with grass and weeds, many cesspools can’t even be seen. Quite a number of tribal members have tumbled into the cesspools when they went there to do their "big business". If you happen to be there at the wrong time or on the wrong spot, you would be gone as the ground over an old cesspool could cave in without warning. There have been a few cases of cesspool collapse in which the victims were swallowed up alive by gigantic sinkholes.

    Priest: So it looks like I have to end my journey here.

    Woodcutter: No, you can go over to the other side by climbing the lower mountain on the right.

    Priest: Thanks for showing the right path to me. Good-bye!

    Narrator: It did not take long for the priest to climb over to the other side of the mountain as he was skilled in Wudang kungfu, capable of scaling walls or climbing rocks and trees like a ninja.

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