Breaking a promise repeatedly 食言而肥


食言而肥【shi yan er fei】 春秋時,魯國大夫孟武伯,說話一貫無信,魯哀公很不喜歡他。有一次,魯哀公在五梧舉行宴會,孟武伯照例參加,有個名叫郭重的大臣也在座。這郭重長得很肥胖,平時頗受哀公寵愛,因而常遭孟武伯的嫉妒和譏辱。這次孟武伯藉著向哀公敬酒的機會,又向郭重道:“你吃了什麼東西這樣肥胖啊?”魯哀公聽了,很覺厭惡,便代替郭重答道:“食言多也,能無肥乎!”這句話分明是反過來諷刺孟武伯慣於說話不算數,而且在宴會上當著群臣之面,出於國君之口,孟武伯頓時面紅耳赤,感到萬分難堪。

啟示: “食言而肥” 形容說話不守信用的人,只圖自己的便宜。 若表示堅決履行諾言,說話一定算數,即為“決不食言”。

Once there was a man called Mong Guo. He lied a lot, and always found excuses for all kinds of things, and these excuses and lies let him get away with things, leaving people with nothing to say. Once the king asked him,
“Mong Guo, the thing I assigned you, how come I’ve got no information from you? Have you forgotten?”
So he repllied, ” Of course not your majesty, I just still need time to think of a solution.” And of course, that was a lie, and he had totally forgotten. ” Oh, Very Well then,” the king said.
One day as the king invited all of his nobles to a feast, Mong Guo suddenly asked a question out loud. ” How come your so fat?!” he said to the person next to him.
” Well.. Uhh…” he replied, with nothing to say. He saww his bulging belly and looked down in shame. The king saw that Mong Guo wass vvery much rude, so he yelled,” BECAUSE HE ATE TOO MUCH WORDS!”
When everybody heard this, they nodded in agreement, and Mong Guo bowed his head shamefully. From that day on, he never said anything rude or said a lie again.

“Shi yan er fei ” is contrary to promises, those people only to their advantage.

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