An Exemplum Essay, Research Paper
The Immigrant and the Car Salesman
There was once a boy named Petros who immigrated
to the United States from Greece. His family was
very poor, so they came on a ship, and took a train
to Chicago, where they thought they could find work.
When Petros turned eighteen, he decided to move to
Lynn, MA, where he settled in the Greek community.
He began to work hard and saved all of the money he
earned. He married, and, together with his wife,
opened a small produce store. The business prospered, and Petros soon became a wealthy man. He was a very simple man and dressed humbly, always wearing his old hat when he went out.
After a few years, Petros decided that he
wanted a car, and he went to a Cadillac dealership.
The owner of this dealership was aware that Petros
was a rich man and knew about his successful business. He asked Petros what he wanted to buy, and Petros left the dealership with a new Cadillac. Over the years, Petros came to buy many different cars from the dealership.
Many years later, when Petros was an old man,
and his daughter had taken over the produce store, he
put on his old hat and decided to go back to the
Cadillac dealership. When he arrived at the
dealership, a new salesman came out to help him.
Petros asked him the price of one of the new models
in the showroom. The salesman looked at the old man,
with his foreign accent, and wearing his old, beat-up
hat, and told him that it was very expensive and
that he would show him a different one that was much
more affordable. Petros told him that he still wanted
it. The salesman insisted that the car was much too
expensive and that it was not the right car for Petros.
At that moment, the owner of the dealership came out
of his office to go to lunch and, recognizing Petros,
greeted him warmly. He asked him what he wanted to
buy. Petros told him that he wanted the new Cadillac
in the showroom, but that the salesman had tried to
show him a different one because he didn’t think he
could afford the new one. The owner angrily fired
the salesman, and Petros drove away in his new car.
So we see that “Las apariencias enga?an.” In English,
appearances are deceiving.