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Jim Davis

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Aswan Dam

In 1970, the Aswan High Dam in Egypt was completed after 18 years of work. It is a huge rockfill dam that lies just north of the border between Egypt and Sudan. It captures the world's longest river, the Nile, in the world's third largest reservoir, Lake Nasser. Built with Soviet aid at a cost of $1 billion, it now produces hydroelectricity meeting 50% of Egypt's power needs. It holds several years of irrigation reserves, assists multi-cropping, has increased productivity 20-50%, enormously increased Egypt's arable land, and overall, increased Egypt's agricultural income by 200%. The embankment is 111 metres high, with a width of near 1,000 metres. Lake Nasser is 480 long and up to 16 km wide.[Image: Aswan High Dam, North side.]

Big trouble

A man is sleeping in bed when his telephone suddenly rings.

“Hello, Señor Rod? This is Ernesto, the caretaker at your country house.”

“Ah yes, Ernesto. What can I do for you? Is there a problem?”

“Um, I am just calling to advise you, Senor Rod, that your parrot, he is dead.”

“My parrot? Dead? The one that won the international competition?”

“Si, Señor, that's the one.”

“Damn! That's a pity! I spent a small fortune on that bird. What did he die from?”

“From eating the rotten meat, Señor Rod.”

“Rotten meat? Who the hell fed him rotten meat?”

“Nobody, Señor. He ate the meat of the dead horse.”

“Dead horse? What dead horse?”

“The thoroughbred, Señor Rod.”

”My prize thoroughbred is dead?”

”Yes, Señor Rod, he died from all that work pulling the water cart.”

“Are you insane? What water cart?”

“The one we used to put out the fire, Señor.”

“Good Lord!! What fire are you talking about, man?!”

“The one at your house, Señor! A candle fell and the curtains caught on fire.”

“What the hell?” Are you saying that my mansion is destroyed because of a candle?”

“Yes, Señor Rod.”

“But there's electricity at the house! What was the candle for?”

“For the funeral, Señor Rod.”

“WHAT BLOODY FUNERAL?”

“Your wife's, Señor Rod. She showed up very late one night and I thought she was a thief, so I hit her with your new TaylorMade Super Quad 460 golf club.”

“Ernesto, if you broke that driver, you're in serious trouble!”

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