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SSS 2011-05-02

时间:2011-06-04 08:22来源:互联网 提供网友:wanglihong80   字体: [ ]
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    (单词翻译:双击或拖选)

This is Scientific American's 60-Second Science. I'm Steve Mirsky. Got a minute?

The story is called Appointment in Samarra. A Baghdad merchant sends a servant to buy provisions. While at the market, the servant bumps into Death, who makes a threatening gesture. The servant races back to the merchant, borrows a horse and flees to the city of Samarra for safety.

The Somerset Maughan version of the old fable1 about fate continues, with Death narrating2: "Then the merchant went down to the marketplace and he saw me standing3 in the crowd and he came to me and said, 'Why did you make a threatening gesture to my servant when you saw him this morning?' 'That was not a threatening gesture,' I said, 'it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I had an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.'"

I was reminded of this story by a detail in the accounts of the killing4 of Osama Bin5 Laden6: his opulent hiding place had no telephone or internet service. Presumably to minimize the risk of revealing his location through contact with the outside world. But the very lack of such modern technology, intended to avoid attention, attracted it instead. And enabled authorities to keep their long-standing appointment.

Thanks for the minute. For Scientific American's 60-Second Science, I'm Steve Mirsky.


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 fable CzRyn     
n.寓言;童话;神话
参考例句:
  • The fable is given on the next page. 这篇寓言登在下一页上。
  • He had some motive in telling this fable. 他讲这寓言故事是有用意的。
2 narrating 2190dd15ba2a6eb491491ffd99c809ed     
v.故事( narrate的现在分词 )
参考例句:
  • She entertained them by narrating her adventures in Africa. 她讲述她在非洲的历险来使他们开心。
  • [Mike Narrating] Worm and I fall into our old rhythm like Clyde Frazier and Pearl Monroe. [迈克叙述] 虫子和我配合得象以前一样默契我们两好象是克莱德。弗瑞泽和佩尔。门罗。 来自电影对白
3 standing 2hCzgo     
n.持续,地位;adj.永久的,不动的,直立的,不流动的
参考例句:
  • After the earthquake only a few houses were left standing.地震过后只有几幢房屋还立着。
  • They're standing out against any change in the law.他们坚决反对对法律做任何修改。
4 killing kpBziQ     
n.巨额利润;突然赚大钱,发大财
参考例句:
  • Investors are set to make a killing from the sell-off.投资者准备清仓以便大赚一笔。
  • Last week my brother made a killing on Wall Street.上个周我兄弟在华尔街赚了一大笔。
5 bin yR2yz     
n.箱柜;vt.放入箱内;[计算机] DOS文件名:二进制目标文件
参考例句:
  • He emptied several bags of rice into a bin.他把几袋米倒进大箱里。
  • He threw the empty bottles in the bin.他把空瓶子扔进垃圾箱。
6 laden P2gx5     
adj.装满了的;充满了的;负了重担的;苦恼的
参考例句:
  • He is laden with heavy responsibility.他肩负重任。
  • Dragging the fully laden boat across the sand dunes was no mean feat.将满载货物的船拖过沙丘是一件了不起的事。
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