Mr. Boggis was dealing in antique furniture and had his own shop. When customers came to his shop he showed them round it so that they could see the whole range of his goods. Mr. Boggis was a talented salesman: he could buy furniture at a very low price and sell it at a price several times higher. He bought furniture from people in the country who didn’t know the value of antique furniture.
One Sunday Mr. Boggis was delighted to find a very old commode by a famous carpenter. There were only four commodes of this kind. Other salesman A Transaction had sold the three commodes at an extremely high price, and that was the fourth. It was a nice piece of furniture with beautiful legs. Mr. Boggis wanted to buy the commode but he did not want to show Mr. Rummond who had the commode that it was great value. Mr. Boggis said: “Well, the commode doesn’t look beautiful. I can’t compare it with the others that I already have. Besides, it’s not the original, it’s a copy of a commode by a well-known carpenter. I’ve just remembered that I could use its legs A Transaction for some other furniture, but I can’t buy the whole commode just for the legs.” “How much could you give for the commode if you are interested in the legs?” asked Mr. Rummond. “Shall we say 20 pounds? That will be quite reasonable5.” “Make it 35.” “I can’t offer you a higher price, this is my final offer!” “I’ll take it,” Rummond said. “It’s yours. How are you going to take it?” “In my car. I’ve left it not far from here.” Mr. Boggis walked to his car to get it nearer the A Transaction door. He was smiling to himself. The commode was his for 20 pounds and he could get 15 or 20 thousand pounds for it later. In the house Mr. Rummond discussed the transaction with his so Bert. “You did it very well,” Bert said, “Do you think he will pay you?” “We shan’t put it into the car till he pays us the money.” “The commode is very big and what if it doesn’t go in the car? He’ll go away and you’ll never see him or his money again. Besides, he didn’t like it very much.” “I A Transaction can’t say he did.” “Listen to me, father. I’ve got an idea. He told us that he wanted only the legs. Right? So all we’ve got to do is to cut them of right now before he comes back. Then the commode will go in his car. Besides, he won’t have to cut them off at home himself.” “It’s not a bad idea,” Rummond said.
After they had cut off the legs Rummond thought that the commode was still big for Mr. Boggis’s car and he was afraid Mr. Boggis would not A Transaction take it. So he decided to cut the commode itself into several pieces. It was very difficult to do it and Rummond said, “That was a very good carpenter who did the job.” “We are just in time,” Bert said, “Here he comes.”
(After R. Dahl)
1. antique furniture - антикварная мебель.
2. value – цена, стоимость, ценность.
3. to be delighted – быть довольным, восхищаться.
4. carpenter – плотник.
Say what you have learned from the story about:
1. Mr Boggis’s business;
2. his transaction with Mr Rummond.
3. Think and answer:
1. Why did Mr Boggis look for antique furniture in the country and not in the city?
2. Why A Transaction did Mr Rummond agree to sell his commode at a very low price?
3. Will Mr Boggis take the commode after Mr Rummond cut it into several pieces? Why do you think so?
10.Grammar snack:Supply the correct tense forms.