Centipede and the Wise One

The centipede decided to ask the wise man of the forest, a monkey, the best remedy for the pain in his legs.

That’s rheumatism,” said the monkey. “You have too many legs.”

“And what do I have to do to have just two legs?”

“Don’t bother me with details,” answered the monkey. “A wise man just gives the best advice; you have to solve the problem.”

Paulo Coelho is a Brazilian author who has sold more than 100 million books, which include 14 short story collections and the novel “The Alchemist.” He has been a fan of the Internet since the early 1990s. He spends at least three hours a day online, writing e-mails back and forth with his readers and posting photos on Flickr, MySpace and a blog.

Coelho’s online activities also include promoting pirated copies of his own books. Since 2005 he’s been directing his readers to an online site where they can download his books, in languages from German to Japanese, for free. “I always thought that when, at the beginning of your career, you strive to be read, you can’t change your mind later and become greedy about it.”

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