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Saturday, July 21, 2007

Joseph Kudar –success – fail– success

A Hungarian refugee -- to protect his privacy we'll call him Joseph
Kudar. Kudar was a successful young lawyer in Hungary before the
uprisings in that country in 1956. A strong believer in freedom for his
country, he fought Soviet tanks in the streets of Budapest with his
friends. When the uprising failed, he was forced to flee the country.

When Kudar arrived in the U.S. he had no money, no job, no friends. He
was, however, well educated; he spoke and wrote several languages,
including English. For several months he tried to get a job in a law
office, but because of his lack of familiarity with American law, he
received only polite refusals.

Finally, it occurred to him that with his knowledge of language he might
be able to get a job with an import-export company. He selected one such
company and wrote a letter to the owner.

Two weeks later he received an answer, but was hardly prepared for the
vindictiveness of the man's reply. Among other things, it said that even
if they did need someone, they wouldn't hire him because he couldn't
even write good English.

Crushed, Kudar's hurt quickly turned to anger. What right did this rude,
arrogant man have to tell him he couldn't write the language! The man
was obviously crude and uneducated -- his letter was chock-full of
grammatical errors!

Kudar sat down and, in the white heat of anger, wrote a scathing reply,
calculated to rip the man to shreds. When he'd finished, however, as he
was reading it over, his anger began to drain away. Then he remembered
the biblical admonition, "A soft answer turned away wrath."

No, he wouldn't mail the letter. Maybe the man was right. English was
not his native tongue. Maybe he did need further study in it. Possibly
this man had done him a favor by making him realize he did need to work
harder on perfecting his English.

Kudar tore up the letter and wrote another. This time he apologized for
the previous letter, explained his situation, and thanked the man for
pointing out his need for further study.

Two days later, he received a phone call inviting him to New York for an
interview. A week later, he went to work for them as a correspondent.
Later, Joseph Kudar became vice president and executive officer of the
company, destined to succeed the man he had hated and sought revenge
against for a fleeting moment -- and then resisted.


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