A Cartoon inspired Story


A cartoon by Bob Mankoff. For more marathon-inspired cartoons: http://nyr.kr/1a0NYv4

This cartoon reminds me my grandfather. He is a great man in knowledge, a great intellectual in the field of Chinese language and literature. He is always proud of graduating from Beijing University (Peking University), and been through with National Southwestern Associated University period. Wen Yi Duo was his teacher. He is in Alzheimer now. When he was still in the early syndrome, we could hear him speaking to himself about Bei Da a lot. Not any more.

Years ago, when we still are able to do family reunion, we sat with my grandfather, and he said, in his university time, all the teaching were done in English. He knows good in English. He remembered vividly Life Magazine he was reading back then. There was a commercial about a red wine. On the graphic, there is a person making toast with a glass of red wine, and the caption goes, “To drink or not to drink, we all die, so let’s drink!” This is the meaning I translated from his description. His hometown is Shandong, Penglai, where people believe has gods living in. Now he keeps thinking me and my cousins are fishermen, what a pity, but at least, he drank before.

And we keep drinking.