A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
Ove is fifty-nine.
He drives a Saab. Heâ€™s the kind of man who points at people he doesnâ€™t like the look of, as if they were burglars and his forefinger a policemanâ€™s flashlight. He stands at the counter of a shop where owners of Japanese cars come to purchase white cables. Ove eyes the sales assistant for a long time before shaking a medium-sized white box at him.
â€œSo this is one of those O-Pads, is it?â€ he demands.
The assistant, a young man with a single-digit body mass index, looks ill at ease. He visibly struggles to control his urge to snatch the box out of Oveâ€™s hands.
â€œYes, exactly. An iPad. Do you think you could stop shaking it like that . . . ?â€
Ove gives the box a skeptical glance, as if itâ€™s a highly dubious sort of box, a box that rides a scooter and wears tracksuit pants and just called Ove â€œmy friendâ€ before offering to sell him a watch.
â€œI see. So itâ€™s a computer, yes?â€
The sales assistant nods. Then hesitates and quickly shakes his head.
â€œYes . . . or, what I mean is, itâ€™s an iPad. Some people call it a â€˜tabletâ€™ and others call it a â€˜surfing device.â€™ There are different ways of looking at it. . . .â€
Ove looks at the sales assistant as if he has just spoken backwards, before shaking the box again.
â€œBut is it good, this thing?â€
The assistant nods confusedly. â€œYes. Or . . . How do you mean?â€
Ove sighs and starts talking slowly, articulating his words as if the only problem here is his adversaryâ€™s impaired hearing.
â€œIs. It. Goooood? Is it a good computer?â€
The assistant scratches his chin.
â€œI mean . . . yeah . . . itâ€™s really good . . . but it depends what sort of computer you want.â€
Ove glares at him.
â€œI want a computer! A normal bloody computer!â€
Silence descends over the two men for a short while. The assistant clears his throat.
â€œWell . . . it isnâ€™t really a normal computer. Maybe youâ€™d rather have a . . .â€
The assistant stops and seems to be looking for a word that falls within the bounds of comprehension of the man facing him. Then he clears his throat again and says:
â€œ. . . a laptop?â€
Ove shakes his head wildly and leans menacingly over the counter.
â€œNo, I donâ€™t want a â€˜laptop.â€™ I want a computer.â€
The assistant nods pedagogically.
â€œA laptop is a computer.â€
Ove, insulted, glares at him and stabs his forefinger at the counter.
â€œYou think I donâ€™t know that!â€
Another silence, as if two gunmen have suddenly realized they have forgotten to bring their pistols. Ove looks at the box for a long time, as though heâ€™s waiting for it to make a confession.
â€œWhere does the keyboard pull out?â€ he mutters eventually.
The sales assistant rubs his palms against the edge of the counter and shifts his weight nervously from foot to foot, as young men employed in retail outlets often do when they begin to understand that something is going to take considerably more time than they had initially hoped.
â€œWell, this one doesnâ€™t actually have a keyboard.â€
Ove does something with his eyebrows. â€œAh, of course,â€ he splutters. â€œBecause you have to buy it as an â€˜extra,â€™ donâ€™t you?â€
â€œNo, what I mean is that the computer doesnâ€™t have a separate keyboard. You control everything from the screen.â€
Ove shakes his head in disbelief, as if heâ€™s just witnessed the sales assistant walking around the counter and licking the glass-fronted display cabinet.
â€œBut I have to have a keyboard. You do understand that?â€
The young man sighs deeply, as if patiently counting to ten.
â€œOkay. I understand. In that case I donâ€™t think you should go for this computer. I think you should buy something like a MacBook instead.â€
â€œA McBook?â€ Ove says, far from convinced. â€œIs that one of those blessed â€˜eReadersâ€™ everyoneâ€™s talking about?â€
â€œNo. A MacBook is a . . . itâ€™s a . . . laptop, with a keyboard.â€
â€œOkay!â€ Ove hisses. He looks around the shop for a moment. â€œSo are they any good, then?â€
The sales assistant looks down at the counter in a way that seems to reveal a fiercely yet barely controlled desire to begin clawing his own face. Then he suddenly brightens, flashing an energetic smile.
â€œYou know what? Let me see if my colleague has finished with his customer, so he can come and give you a demonstration.â€
Ove checks his watch and grudgingly agrees, reminding the assistant that some people have better things to do than stand around all day waiting. The assistant gives him a quick nod, then disappears and comes back after a few moments with a colleague. The colleague looks very happy, as people do when they have not been working for a sufficient stretch of time as sales assistants.
â€œHi, how can I help you?â€…………………………………
|Download Ebook||Read Now||File Type||Upload Date|
|Epub, Mobi||May 30, 2020|
Do you like this book? Please share with your friends, let's read it !! :)