A true story as told by my great-uncle Alexander (Sando) Warda:
"In 1950, I lived in Abadan and worked at the refinery there. At that time it was still the AIOC, the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company. One day a new British engineer arrived, fresh off the boat, and since I spoke a little English they asked me to show him around the refinery. It was a very hot summer day, hotter than usual as we set off in a jeep for a tour of the oil fields. He asked questions and I answered. At one point he asked me to stop. There were three workers digging a ditch, and he was impressed at how hard they were working in the hot, hot sun. He got out of the jeep and walked over to them and he gave one of them a 'jolly-good-show-chap' slap on the butt. The worker immediately turned around, angry, with his shovel raised (touching a man's ass, needless to say, is of the highest insult), but when he saw it was an Englishman, he bowed his head in respect and went back to work.
"We got back in the jeep, continued on our way without a word about this incident, even though I could tell it had upset him. We returned to the main offices when the tour was finished and I took my leave.
"The next day, the new engineer summoned me to his office and asked if I knew the name of the worker who had raised the shovel at him the day before. I said I could easily find out the name, thinking that he wanted to fire him. He then asked me what was the best job at the refinery for a common laborer. I said perhaps tea-boy, since it was a well-paid job and it was cooler inside the building. He asked me to see to it.
"I remember thinking 'what a gentlemen!' and went to the hiring office to prepare the paperwork for the new position as tea-boy.
"Six months went by. The Englishman again summoned me to his office. He asked me how 'our tea-boy' was doing, and I supposed he was doing well. Then he asked me what the worst job in the refinery was. I told him that we have a sulfur mine; very dangerous, prone to cave-ins and the fumes are toxic. He said that he wanted to transfer this tea-boy to the sulfur mine immediately. I said 'yes, sir. As you wish', and I turned to walk out but I couldn't help myself. I stopped and asked the engineer if he could explain the change of mind. The engineer got up from his desk and with a very ugly voice and tone said, 'Of course you do not understand. This is why we British rule the world and you do not! That man threatened an Englishman! If I had fired him, he would have gone and found another job and bragged to his friends and family that he had stood up to an Englishman. By not firing him then, but giving him an easier job with higher pay, I allowed him and his family to live better, eat better, wear better clothes and entertain guests. Now, when I take all this away from him, he will understand YOU DO NOT RAISE A SHOVEL AT AN ENGLISHMAN!'"
Britannia uber alles
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