Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The kidney incident

"What do you know about the kidney trade?" It was hard not to answer a man with a gun.

"Almost nothing."

"It tends to flow one direction: south to north; east to west."

"I see." Though he didn't.

After a brief reconciliation they parted ways. Friedman went back to his hotel.

Three days later it hit him: he could become a completely global citizen. He called the man again.

Two weeks later, after a stay in a hotel in Bangalore to recover from the operation, he was ready to resume his travels.

"I have become metaphor", he thought, "flattener of worlds." He laughed to himself.

Soon, though, he started to feel unexpected side effects. Finally, while lecturing undergraduates at Harvard, he nearly collapsed, barely steadying himself with the lectern.

"Get me out of here" he hissed to no one in particular. They were already moving.

The hospital had bad news. When he could finally croak something out all he could say was "Which one did they take? Which one do I still have?"

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