#AtoZChallenge: O is for Optimism



There have always been discussions online and in real life on whether writers should give up their daytime jobs — if and when such an opportunity arises, of course. I recently saw a resignation letter that has gone viral in China. While the person who wrote it is rumoured to be a high school teacher, he or she has adequately expressed what nearly all of us would love to do under the most ideal of circumstances. The letter has only one sentence:

“The world is so big, I’d like to take a look.”

Spot-on, is it not? Reminds me of that great Australian classic Such is Life, which also opens with one sentence: “Unemployed at last!”

Now, those who are familiar with Chinese culture would know such a thing as “couplets”. A couplet consists of two lines of writing, which correspond with each other in length, style and “ideally profound yet concise” meaning (see Wikipedia). Sometimes a “horizontal scroll” is also used as a conclusion or summary of the couplet.

So, following the popularity of the aforementioned resignation letter across the Middle Kingdom, the forever practical Chinese have come up with an equally prevailing response. Let us put them together here —

First line of the couplet:

“The world is so big, I’d like to take a look.”

Corresponding line:

“The wallet is so flat, you’ll just have to wait.”

And the horizontal scroll as conclusion?

“Keep Working!”


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Tamara Narayan
    Apr 17, 2015 @ 23:45:23

    Not that I’d encourage anyone to quit there job, but that is an wonderful way to phrase a resignation letter. (The flat wallet response is pretty funny too.)


    • Christine Sun
      Apr 19, 2015 @ 22:16:25

      Thanks for commenting, Tamara. Just to follow up, I saw a tweet from Sina Weibo yesterday, written by a guy/gal who was asked to resign (read: fired). His/her boss kindly said: “The world is so big, you should go and take a look.”…


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