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Roberto Henry Ebelt



Good morning. I hope to find you all, my dear readers, very well.

I am writing these lines on Tuesday, September 06, 2011. Three unpleasant things happened to me this morning. First, I got, from a very good friend of mine, whom I hadn’t been in touch with for quite some time, a very strange e-mail. To start with, the message didn’t have any greetings, something that, alone, indicated that there was something wrong, because whenever I get an e-mail from friend, I expect to be saluted, especially when this friend hasn’t been in touch with me for several months.

My first concern, when I get this kind of e-mail, is regarding attachments. It didn’t have any.

Then I looked at the text, and all I could find was an instruction to download a file to see pornographic pictures. I decided to deal with this subject later on, because I had urgent matters to deal with.

While I was reading the other e-mails, I noticed that one more message had arrived (my computer plays a sound whenever it gets a new message) from the same friend whom I hadn’t seen for some time. Again, the message had no greetings, no attachments and just an “order” to download several pictures of “my interest”, suggesting that I was being betrayed.

Immediately I asked my wife whether she had received, in her computer, any messages from this friend of ours. The answer was positive. As we had our friend’s cell phone number, we called him immediately and asked him whether he had sent us any e-mails in the last few hours.

His answer was negative. Then I told him that we had received four messages from him, all four containing dozens of e-mail addresses of most of his friends.

At once, he realized that he had recently used a public computer at the university where he studies and that, later on, when he used his own computer, at home, to access his mails, he noticed that the site of his internet provider did not ask him his password. Bingo. His password had been stolen at the public computer, and all his friends’ e-mail addresses, too.

That was the first attempt to rip me off.

A few hours later, I got a phone call, supposedly from São Paulo, and a woman asked me whether that was the number of Roberto Henry Ebelt. I said yes and she said that she was calling from São Paulo and informed me that her company had several titles, issued by me, that had not been duly paid, and that these titles would be officially appointed by a civil law – notary (SERIAM PROTESTADOS) in the next few hours, unless I provided an immediate deposit in a particular (the word particular is a false cognate: it seems to mean PARTICULAR, but its true meaning is DETERMINADO, DETERMINADA) bank account.

I simply asked her what the number of my CPF was. She immediately hung up (to hang up means DESLIGAR O TELEFONE). As I checked in my call screen device (bina) I found out that the number was not from São Paulo. It was from Porto Alegre, namely (51)

When I tried to get in touch with someone at that number, I got the following answer:
That was the second attempt to rip me off.

A few minutes later, I turned on my cell phone and there was the register of a phone call from an area code that I did not even know that existed. Probably that was the third attempt made in one morning to rip me off. The executers of the above-mentioned attempts of fraud are called swindlers.

Note about the word executioner: in Portuguese, it may be understood as EXECUTOR or CARRASCO.

In Portuguese, the word for swindler is VIGARISTA.

To rip off someone means PASSAR A PERNA EM ALGUÉM.

As you can see, we cannot complain about our politicians: they are the extract, the juice of our society. While our politicians are allowed to be elected by people who cannot read (or write), in other words, by uninformed people, what can you expect? I will tell you what you can expect: You can expect exactly what you (we) are getting.

The worst contradiction or inconsistency of democracy is that we may, very well, elect our executioners instead of our representatives

As the old Greek would say: KYRIE ELEISON (God, have mercy on us).

But let us not get discouraged*: the world has already been much worse than it is nowadays. What our politicians destroy in a week, our entrepreneurs and blue-collar workers can rebuild in two days of hard work.

*Discouraged: adjective - DISHEARTENED, dispirited, demoralized, deflated, disappointed, let down, disconsolate, despondent, dejected, cast down, downcast, depressed, crestfallen, dismayed, low-spirited, gloomy, glum, pessimistic, unenthusiastic; put off, daunted, intimidated, cowed, crushed; informal down in the mouth, down in the dumps, fed up, unenthused;

Have a nice weekend.

Tags: Roberto Henry Ebelt, ensino, inglês

Roberto Henry Ebelt é professor, escritor, escreveu uma coluna semanal para o Jornal do Comércio de Porto Alegre entre 2001 e 2013, e é diretor do curso HENRY'S BUSINESS ENGLISH desde 1971.

Seu mais recente livro, O QUE VOCÊ DEVE SABER ANTES DE ESTUDAR INGLÊS, pode ser encontrado nas livrarias Disal, Cultura e SBS ou à rua Hoffmann, 728 em Porto Alegre.

E-mail: roberto@henrys.com.br
Fone (51) 3222-3144
Página no Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/henrysbusinessnglish/?pnref=lhc

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