A Story Once Told : About Sabres and Tibetans in Lhasa

September 6, 2008

Super)bad) by Carl Baratta

Super)bad) by Carl Baratta

I had a dinner guest about six months ago. He was Tibetan and he told me a story about two Tibetans in Lhasa. These two, Southern Tibetans, he said, were at a pub watching English football. As is a Southern Tibetan custom (apparently) each man carried a curved saber on his belt. Each man rooted for separate teams and each grew progressively drunk.

When at last the game was over, the man who rooted for the losers was downcast, while the other, ruddy and teasing, mocked the man for being a loser.

Upon which the other grew angry, drew his sabre and chopped off the winning man’s hand – just below the elbow. Without pause, the freshly armeless fellow picked up his stray hand, stuck it under the armpit of his amputated hand, and drew his sabre.

Accordingly, they one without an arm chased the one with around Lhasa three times.

I do not know what happened in the end.

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