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    (November 3, 2002 )


Jamie wrote this story in response to an English 10 Assignment on writing a folktale.


The Judge and the Couple

    In a small but clamorous town, there lived a newly-installed, intelligent judge and many hostile couples who always went to court to ask for a divorce. The divorce rate of this town had not slowed down for several years.  One day, like other busy days, an anxious young couple came into the judge’s thrifty, simple and tiny office and asked him to approve their divorce agreement.

    The judge, astonished at the couple’s uncultivated way of saying things, asked them where they had learned such phrases.

   “ From him,” the wife pointed to the husband shouted, “ Money and authority made him change a lot.”

   “ It’s her! This greedy animal always drives me crazy! ” yelled the husband. 

    “Here are some clauses for your immediate reading,” said the judge, “and here are some forms for you to fill out tonight. But unless you can write your divorce reasons in as many words as a McDonald’s hamburger sales pitch, I will not approve your agreement.”

     The couple went home and stared at each other helplessly the whole night.  Finally the wife said, “Let me think a while, and may be I can think what can be done about this.”

      The next day, having thought of a solution, she went with her sleepy husband; they gave a slip to the judge, on which it stated, “We'd like to.”

     “The quantity of words for ‘McDonald’s Hamburger sales’ is three, so we wrote   three words too,” they explained.

     So, laughing, the judge knew that this couple was smart, but it was not to end there.

     The second day, the judge sent them a note which said, “Tomorrow, you must catch all the blackbirds in the highest building of the town to see me, or you will not be allowed to divorce.”

     Weeping, the wife received the note, but her husband said, “Have no fear, I shall think of something.”

     In the morning, they came to the judge and showed him a big sack and said, “We have prepared already for catching those birds, please tag all blackbirds’ legs, so we can avoid catching the wrong ones.”  Again, the judge was impressed by the couple’s answer.

     “My computer has infected by a virus.  Go home and bring me a vaccine tomorrow morning,” ordered the judge, “ or you will never get divorce.”

     “Go to bed!” the wife said, “I will think of something by bringing my mind to bear upon it all night.”

     The second morning, they went to see the judge and said,

     "We now bring you a special vaccine for your poor computer, but please remember to give the computer a pain and fever releasing medicine after the injection, or it won’t get over from the illness.”

     Finally, the judge laughed heartily and declared that the couple’s divorce application was approved. 

     But the couple said, “ Now we are not supposed to leave each other, because we find each other useful in solving problems, and we are going to join the TV contest show, ‘ Who wants to be a trillion couple?’ Then, they tore up the divorce agreement and walked out happily, hand in hand.

     Since then, the divorce rate of the small town has gone down miraculously.


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A Smart Pig
Annie's amusing paragraph contemplates what it would be like to be a pig, but only for one day! 

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Short paragraph with lots of detailed description. 

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    Short essay in five paragraph standard style.

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Short paragraph demonstrating the use of the senses in writing.

Advice to New Students of the PALC
Lucky gives some straightforward and useful advice to new students. 

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Ciprian has some good advice on how the PALC can help you with your English skills.




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