Monday, February 8, 2016

Fractured Fairy Tales: Alden Farquahar and his wrong choices (?)

The story may be a bit strange and the stereotypes are awful but there are many useful English phrases. Maybe you can use your better English to explain (or just ask) why the stereotypes are awful.

Some of the most interesting or useful phrases are underlined.

A young man should have three things: money, good looks, and a sense of humor -- in that order.

"Gosh, I'm handsome."

But when it came to money, he was woefully lacking.

Ah, but money isn't everything. Alden was constantly besieged by a bevy of beautiful maidens. And he laughed easily at anything and everything.

It was while he was strolling through the kingdom one day that his life took the wrong turn on the freeway. For up ahead, a dark figure was bent over, pulling weeds. [пропалывать]

Alden couldn't resist. … "Mother of pearl, I kicked a witch."

"I cast a spell on them. … From this day on, you'll be as ugly as all get-out. And you will remain ugly until the day that a fair maiden kisses you."

Well, you couldn't get much more ugly than what Alden became. He was beastly-looking.

Ah, but that third commodity, the one he had always lacked, suddenly came his way.
"What are you talking about? I just had lunch."

"If you don't eat me, ogre, I will remunerate you." "What does that mean?" "I'll give you money." … By sundown, 43 passers-by had passed by Alden and donated to the cause.

"I'm rich. Now I can live in the manner to which I'm unaccustomed." [usually "the manner to which smb is accustomed."]

The first thing on his list was an abode to dwell in.

"I'll tell you what, buddy. If you don't eat me, I'll let you have it for cheap."

The price was right, so Alden moved in. Then he settled down to a life of luxury. And every hour, on the hour, he counted his money.

Whenever he wanted to bolster or replenish his monetary supply, he simply walked through the streets of a nearby village, shouting "Yoo hoo, it's me, Alden! I've come to eat you!"

Inside of a year, Alden was a millionaire ten times over.

It was just about that time that the old witch, whom Alden had kicked, received a group of visitors. 

That name rang a bell. And, sure enough, there on page 462 of her income tax report was the story of how she had changed Alden into a beast, which was deductible. [вычитаемый на налоговом отчете]

"Then the beast that lives in the castle is really our beloved Alden?"

"Yes, and all you have to do is kiss him. That breaks the spell, and I'll no longer be able to claim him as a dependant."

"I have come to kiss you, Alden, and return you to your former handsome self."

Then Alded realized that he would lose his livelihood if he were no longer a beast.
"Let me take you away from all this."

But the damsel was dedicated. He sought refuge in the castle basement. "Kiss me, my fool."

Finally, on the castle roof, "They've got me outnumbered, but they'll never find me up here."

"Halt and desist! Pursue me one step more and I shall fling myself over the parapet."
"Well, we can't let you throw your life away." "Well, I'm glad you've come to your senses."

"Aren't you going to kiss us goodbye?" "Well, I suppose it's the least I can do."

But the money ran out and he also became penniless again.

"I don't want to be handsome! I want to be ugly and rich! I want to be a beast again!"

And so, dear friends, whenever you are bending over and pulling weeds and someone gives you a good solid kick, don't be too harsh on them. It may be Alden Farquahar. 

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