THE PARABLE OF THE CREAMIANS AND APAJEENS
Ø 1) Read the heading and the words from the text and guess what the text is about: bountiful, abundant, barren, to amaze, to impress, a smart job, to provide, to despair, to share, a goal, a parable.
Ø 2) Read the text and find the sentence that expresses the main idea.
Once upon a time there was a group of people who lived on an idyllic island. They were known as the Creamians, which loosely translates as “lucky ones.” The Creamians prospered; the trees on their island were bountiful; their surrounding waters were abundant with fish. They were easily able to feed their population and also to export their products to a neighboring island that was not so plentiful. The inhabitants of the second island were known as the Apajeens or “those who must work smarter.”
One day when the chief of the Creamians went to negotiate with the chief of the Apajeens, he realized the Apajeen people were decreasing their order for Creamian products. He wondered why. The Apajeen chief told him that his people “were working smarter” and soon would not need any help from the Creamians. The Creamian chief was impressed and amazed.He wondered how this could be, considering that the Apajeen island had none of the natural resources that Creamia had. Actually, as he recalled, Apajee was barren when it was settled. The Creamian chief did not understand this “working smarter” routine, so he departed Apajee assuming that next time the Apajee’s order would have to be larger.
For days the Creamian chief pondered this notion of “working smarter,” because secretly the chief had always worried about his own island and his people. He knew that some day his island’s easy abundance would run out, and then what? Several times he had tried to organize his people to try and teach them how to plant and how to navigate. Each time the response was the same. “We don’t need to learn these things; we are lucky and have trees and waters that are bountiful.” Each time the chief accepted this answer because he didn’t know what else he could say.
However, this “working smarter” idea kept nagging at the chief. He finally called his people together and again said that he wanted to teach them how to plant and navigate. Again they replied, “We don’t need to learn these things; we are lucky.” This time the chief said, “The Apajeens are “working smarter” and they don’t need so many of our products any more.” For several minutes there was silence. Many of the Creamians looked at each other, but they didn’t understand the chief’s point. The chief explained, “I think we need to learn how to “work smarter” in case our trees and waters no longer provide for us.” The Creamians laughed hysterically. They even joked that maybe the chief had lost his mind or was spending too much time with those crazy Apajeens. So the chief finally dismissed his people and tried to forget the “working smarter” issue.
The next time the Creamian chief went to Apajee he was told the Apajeens did not need anything more. As a matter of fact, they had begun to export their products to the people of other islands. The Apajeen chief reported that he had even heard that Apajee was now considered more prosperous than Creamia by other islanders. The Creamian chief was happy for the Apajeens, but he despaired for his own people. He could see that the Apajeen people were happy and had a great deal of pride in their work. They shared and worked together to achieve their goals. His people, on the other hand, were bored and only did what had to get done each day. They fought with each other over their resources and had no common purpose.
As the Creamian chief was leaving Apajee, the Apajeen chief called out, “Oh, by the way, we hear that a terrible storm is about to strike our islands.” On his way home, the chief noticed that the normally calm waters were very rough and that the wind was very powerful. He thought that the Apajeen chief was right and that he should warn his people, so they could prepare for the storm. When the chief arrived at Creamia, he told his people about the coming storm. They prepared as best they could, but after the storm their island was barren, their boats were sunk, and several islanders died.
When calm returned, those islanders who remained tried to find some fish to eat. Unfortunately, the waters surrounding their island were no longer alive with fish. The Creamians asked the chief what they could do, and he said he didn’t know what they were going to do, but he was going to Apajee where he hoped they would accept him and he could learn to “work smarter.” The people laughed and said that Apajee was probably just as barren as their island now. The chief agreed with them but he began building a raft out of driftwood anyway.
Ø 3) Choose the proper heading for this parable out of the given ones:
a)ONE THING AT A TIME.
b)THE MORE, THE BETTER.
c)NO PAINS, NO GAINS.
d)WORK SMARTER, NOT HARDER.
e)HOLD FAST TO DREAMS.
Ø 4) Fill in the gaps in this table, contrasting the two societies described in the text. Some ideas are not formulated in the text since they are clear from the context.
Ø 5) Write the end of the story (one or two paragraphs).