Der ewige Jude als Motivationstrainer

Meine größeren Rheinexkursionen stehen kurz bevor und ich stoße auf Thomas Hood, den Ehemann von Jane Hood (s. letzter Eintrag), der das alles lange schon hinter sich hat. In seinem Buch Up the Rhine (London MDCCCXL) läßt sich dieser Aufbruch sehr britisch, nämlich wie folgt in einem fiktiven Brief, an: „My Dear Brooke, – Your reproach is just. My epistolary taciturnity has certainly been of unusual duration; but instead of filling up a sheet with mere excuses, I beg to refer you at once to „Barclay`s Apology for Quakerism,“ which i presume includes an apology for silence. The truth is, I have had nothing to write of, and in such cases I philosophically begrudge postage, as a contradiction to the old axiom ex nihilo nihil fit, inasmuch as the revenue through such empty epistles gets something out of nothing. Now, however, I have news to break, and I trust you are not so god a man as „unconcerned to hear the mighty crack. “ We Are Going Up The Rhine!!! You who have been long aware of my yearning to the abounding river, like the supposed mystical bending of the hazel twig towards the unseen waters, will be equally pleased and surprised by such an announcement. In point of fact, but for the preparations, that are hourly going on before my eyes, I should have, as Irish Buller used to say, some considerable doubts of my own veracity. There seemed plenty of lions in the path of such a Pilgrim`s Progress; and yet here we are, resolved on the attempt, in the hope that, as Christian dropped his burthen by the way, a little travelling will jolt off the load that encumbers the broad shoulders of a dear, hearty, ailing, dead-alive, hypochondriacal old bachelor uncle.“ Der Onkel kommt im Folgenden nicht sonderlich gut weg. Schwer, den Herrn für eine Rheinreise zu begeistern: „It is with the sanction, indeed by the advise of the medicus just mentioned (an original of the Abernethy school) – that we are bound on an experimental trip up the Rhine, to try what change of scene and travelling will do for such an extraordinary disease. The prescription, however, was any thing but palatable to the patient, who demurred most obstinately, and finally asked his counsellor, rather crustily, if he could name a single instance of a man who had lived the longer for wandering over the world? „To be sure I can,“ answered the doctor, „the Wandering Jew.““


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