Part 12 out of 14
TOMMY--"Pop, what is it that the Bible says is here to-day and gone
POP--"Probably the cook, my son."
As usual, they began discussing the play after the theater. "Well, how
did you like the piece, my dear?" asked the fond husband who had always
found his wife a good critic.
"Very much. There's only one improbable thing in it: the second act
takes place two years after the first, and they have the same servant."
SMITH--"We are certainly in luck with our new cook--soup, meat,
vegetables and dessert, everything perfect!"
MRS. S.--"Yes, but the dessert was made by her successor."
THE NEW GIRL--"An' may me intended visit me every Sunday afternoon,
MISTRESS--"Who is your intended, Delia?"
THE NEW GIRL--"I don't know yet, ma'am. I'm a stranger in town."
"And do you have to be called in the morning?" asked the lady who was
about to engage a new girl.
"I don't has to be, mum," replied the applicant, "unless you happens to
A maid dropped and broke a beautiful platter at a dinner recently. The
host did not permit a trifle like this to ruffle him in the least.
"These little accidents happen 'most every day," he said apologetically.
"You see, she isn't a trained waitress. She was a dairymaid originally,
but she had to abandon that occupation on account of her inability to
handle the cows without breaking their horns."
Young housewives obliged to practice strict economy will sympathize with
the sad experience of a Washington woman.
When her husband returned home one evening he found her dissolved in
tears, and careful questioning elicited the reason for her grief.
"Dan," said she, "every day this week I have stopped to look at a
perfect love of a hat in Mme. Louise's window. Such a hat, Dan, such a
beautiful hat! But the price--well, I wanted it the worst way, but just
couldn't afford to buy it."
"Well, dear," began the husband recklessly, "we might manage to--"
"Thank you, Dan," interrupted the wife, "but there isn't any 'might'
about it. I paid the cook this noon, and what do you think? She marched
right down herself and bought that hat!"--_Edwin Tarrisse_.
It is probable that many queens of the kitchen share the sentiment
good-naturedly expressed by a Scandinavian servant, recently taken into
the service of a young matron of Chicago.
The youthful assumer of household cares was disposed to be a trifle
"Now, Lena," she asked earnestly, "are you a _good_ cook?"
"Ya-as, 'm, I tank so," said the girl, with perfect naivete, "if you
vill not try to help me."--_Elgin Burroughs_.
"Have you a good cook now?"
"I don't know. I haven't been home since breakfast!"
MRS. LITTLETOWN--"This magazine looks rather the worse for wear."
MRS. NEARTOWN--"Yes, it's the one I sometimes lend to the servant on
MRS. LITTLETOWN--"Doesn't she get tired of always reading the same one?"
MRS. NEARTOWN--"Oh, no. You see, it's the same book, but it's always a
different servant."--_Suburban Life_.
MRS. HOUSEN HOHM--"What is your name?"
APPLICANT FOR COOKSHIP--"Miss Arlington."
MRS. HOUSEN HOHM--"Do you expect to be called Miss Arlington?"
APPLICANT---"No, ma'am; not if you have an alarm clock in my room."
MISTRESS--"Nora, I saw a policeman in the park to-day kiss a baby. I
hope you will remember my objection to such things."
NORA--"Sure, ma'am, no policeman would ever think iv kissin' yer baby
whin I'm around."
_See also_ Gratitude; Recommendations.
CLERK--"Can you let me off to-morrow afternoon? My wife wants me to go
shopping with her."
EMPLOYER--"Certainly not. We are much too busy."
CLERK--"Thank you very much, sir. You are very kind!"
The late "lan Maclaren" (Dr. John Watson) once told this story on
himself to some friends:
"I was coming over on the steamer to America, when one day I went into
the library to do some literary work. I was very busy and looked so, I
suppose. I had no sooner started to write than a diffident-looking young
man plumped into the chair opposite me, began twirling his cap and
stared at me. I let him sit there. An hour or more passed, and he was
still there, returning my occasional and discouraging glances at him
with a foolish, ingratiating smile. I was inclined to be annoyed. I had
a suspicion that he was a reader of my books, perhaps an admirer--or an
autograph-hunter. He could wait. But at last he rose, and still twirling
his cap, he spoke:
"'Excuse me, Doctor Watson; I'm getting deathly sick in here and I'm
real sorry to disturb you, but I thought you'd like to know that just as
soon as you left her Mrs. Watson fell down the companionway stairs, and
I guess she hurt herself pretty badly.'"
When the late Senator Wolcott first went to Colorado he and his brother
opened a law office at Idaho Springs under the firm name of "Ed. Wolcott
& Bro." Later the partnership was dissolved. The future senator packed
his few assets, including the sign that had hung outside of his office,
upon a burro and started for Georgetown, a mining town farther up in the
hills. Upon his arrival he was greeted by a crowd of miners who
critically surveyed him and his outfit. One of them, looking first at
the sign that hung over the pack, then at Wolcott, and finally at the
"Say, stranger, which of you is Ed?"
"Buck" Kilgore, of Texas, who once kicked open the door of the House of
Representatives when Speaker Reed had all doors locked to prevent the
minority from leaving the floor and thus escaping a vote, was noted for
his indifference to forms and rules. Speaker Reed, annoyed by members
bringing lighted cigars upon the floor of the House just before opening
time, had signs conspicuously posted as follows: "No smoking on the
floor of the House." One day just before convening the House his eagle
eye detected Kilgore nonchalantly puffing away at a fat cigar. Calling a
page, he told him to give his compliments to the gentleman from Texas
and ask him if he had not seen the signs. After a while the page
returned and seated himself without reporting to the Speaker, and Mr.
Reed was irritated to see the gentleman from Texas continue his smoke.
With a frown he summoned the page and asked:
"Did you tell the gentleman from Texas what I said?"
"I did," replied the page.
"What did he say?" asked Reed.
"Well--er," stammered the page, "he said to give his compliments to you
and tell you he did not believe in signs."
A conversation with an Englishman.--_Heine_.
BALL-"What is silence?"
HALL-"The college yell of the school of experience."
The other day upon the links a distinguished clergyman was playing a
closely contested game of golf. He carefully teed up his ball and
addressed it with the most aproved grace; he raised his driver and hit
the ball a tremendous clip, but instead of soaring into the azure it
perversely went about twelve feet to the right and then buzzed around in
a circle. The clerical gentleman frowned, scowled, pursed up his mouth
and bit his lips, but said nothing, and a friend who stood by him said:
"Doctor, that is the most profane silence I ever witnessed."
Man-like is it to fall into sin,
Fiend-like is it to dwell therein,
Christ-like is it for sin to grieve,
God-like is it all sin to leave.
--_Friedrich von Logan_.
"Now," said the clergyman to the Sunday-school class, "can any of you
tell me what are sins of omission?"
"Yes, sir," said the small boy. "They are the sins we ought to have done
As the celebrated soprano began to sing, little Johnnie became greatly
exercised over the gesticulations of the orchestra conductor.
"What's that man shaking his stick at her for?" he demanded indignantly.
"Sh-h! He's not shaking his stick at her."
But Johnny was not convinced.
"Then what in thunder's she hollering for?"
A visiting clergyman was occupying a pulpit in St. Louis one Sunday when
it was the turn of the bass to sing a solo, which he did very badly, to
the annoyance of the preacher, a lover of music. When the singer fell
back in his seat, red of face and exhausted, the clergyman arose, placed
his hands on the unopened Bible, deliberately surveyed the faces of the
congregation, and announced the text:
"And the wind ceased and there was a great calm."
It wasn't the text he had chosen, but it fitted his sermon as well as
One cold, wet, and windy night he came upon a negro shivering in the
doorway of an Atlanta store. Wondering what the darky could be doing,
standing on a cold, wet night in such a draughty position, the
proprietor of the shop said:
"Jim, what are you doing here?"
"'Sense me, sir," said Jim, "but I'm gwine to sing bass tomorrow mornin'
at church, an' I am tryin' to ketch a cold."--_Howard Morse_.
"The man who sings all day at work is a happy man."
"Yes, but how about the man who works and has to listen to him?" Miss
Jeanette Gilder was one of the ardent enthusiasts at the debut of
Tetrazzini. After the first act she rushed to the back of the house to
greet one of her friends. "Don't you think she is a wonder?" she asked
"She is a great singer unquestionably," responded her more phlegmatic
friend, "but the registers of her voice are not so even as, for
"Oh, bother Melba," said Miss Gilder. "Tetrazzini gives infinitely more
heat from her registers."
At a certain Scottish dinner it was found that every one had contributed
to the evening's entertainment but a certain Doctor MacDonald.
"Come, come, Doctor MacDonald," said the chairman, "we cannot let you
The doctor protested that he could not sing.
"My voice is altogether unmusical, and resembles the sound caused by the
act of rubbing a brick along the panels of a door."
The company attributed this to the doctor's modesty. Good singers, he
was reminded, always needed a lot of pressing.
"Very well," said the doctor, "if you can stand it I will sing."
Long before he had finished his audience was uneasy.
There was a painful silence as the doctor sat down, broken at length by
the voice of a braw Scot at the end of the table.
"Mon," he exclaimed, "your singin's no up to much, but your veracity's
just awful. You're richt aboot that brick."
She smiles, my darling smiles, and all
The world is filled with light;
She laughs--'tis like the bird's sweet call,
In meadows fair and bright.
She weeps--the world is cold and gray,
Rain-clouds shut out the view;
She sings--I softly steal away
And wait till she gets through.
God sent his singers upon earth
With songs of gladness and of mirth,
That they might touch the hearts of men,
And bring them back to heaven again.
A young lady entered a crowded car with a pair of skates slung over her
arm. An elderly gentleman arose to give her his seat.
"Thank you very much, sir," she said, "but I've been skating all
afternoon, and I'm tired of sitting down."
Recently a friend who had heard that I sometimes suffer from insomnia
told me of a sure cure. "Eat a pint of peanuts and drink two or three
glasses of milk before going to bed," said he, "and I'll warrant you'll
be asleep within half an hour." I did as he suggested, and now for the
benefit of others who may be afflicted with insomnia, I feel it my duty
to report what happened, so far as I am able to recall the details.
First, let me say my friend was right. I did go to sleep very soon after
my retirement. Then a friend with his head under his arm came along and
asked me if I wanted to buy his feet. I was negotiating with him, when
the dragon on which I was riding slipped out of his skin and left me
floating in mid-air. While I was considering how I should get down, a
bull with two heads peered over the edge of the wall and said he would
haul me up if I would first climb up and rig a windlass for him. So as I
was sliding down the mountainside the brakeman came in, and I asked him
when the train would reach my station.
"We passed your station four hundred years ago," he said, calmly folding
the train up and slipping it into his vest pocket.
At this juncture the clown bounded into the ring and pulled the
center-pole out of the ground, lifting the tent and all the people in it
up, up, while I stood on the earth below watching myself go out of sight
among the clouds above. Then I awoke, and found I had been asleep almost
ten minutes.--_The Good Health Clinic_.
There was a young lady of Niger,
Who went for a ride on a tiger;
They returned from the ride
With the lady inside,
And a smile on the face of the tiger.
--_Gilbert K. Chesterton_.
A woman is only a woman, but a good cigar is a smoke.--_Rudyard
AUNT MARY--(horrified) "Good gracious. Harold, what would your mother
say if she saw you smoking cigarets?" HAROLD (calmly)--"She'd have a
fit. They're her cigarets."
An Irish soldier on sentry duty had orders to allow no one to smoke near
his post. An officer with a lighted cigar approached whereupon Pat
boldly challenged him and ordered him to put it out at once.
The officer with a gesture of disgust threw away his cigar, but no
sooner was his back turned than Pat picked it up and quietly retired to
the sentry box.
The officer happening to look around, observed a beautiful cloud of
smoke issuing from the box. He at once challenged Pat for smoking on
"Smoking, is it, sor? Bedad, and I'm only keeping it lit to show the
corporal when he comes as evidence agin you."
While campaigning in Iowa Speaker Cannon was once inveigled into
visiting the public schools of a town where he was billed to speak. In
one of the lower grades an ambitious teacher called upon a youthful
Demosthenes to entertain the distinguished visitor with an exhibition of
amateur oratory. The selection attempted was Byron's "Battle of
Waterloo," and just as the boy reached the end of the first paragraph
Speaker Cannon gave vent to a violent sneeze. "But, hush! hark!"
declaimed the youngster; "a deep sound strikes like a rising knell! Did
ye not hear it?"
The visitors smiled and a moment later the second sneeze--which the
Speaker was vainly trying to hold back--came with increased violence.
"But, hark!" bawled the boy, "that heavy sound breaks in once more, and
nearer, clearer, deadlier than before! Arm! arm! it is--it is--the
cannon's opening roar!"
This was too much, and the laugh that broke from the party swelled to a
roar when "Uncle Joe" chuckled: "Put up yout weapons, children; I won't
shoot any more."
Snobbery is the pride of those who are not sure of their position.
Snore--An unfavorable report from headquarters.--_Foolish Dictionary_.
Among the stories told of the late Baron de Rothschild is one which
details how a "change of heart" once came to his valet--an excellent
fellow, albeit a violent "red."
Alphonse was as good a servant as one would wish to employ, and as his
socialism never got farther than attending a weekly meeting, the baron
never objected to his political faith. After a few months of these
permissions to absent himself from duty, his employer noticed one week
that he did not ask to go. The baron thought Alphonse might have
forgotten the night, but when the next week he stayed at home, he
inquired what was up.
"Sir," said the valet, with the utmost dignity, "some of my former
colleagues have worked out a calculation that if all the wealth in
France were divided equally per capita, each individual would be the
possessor of two thousand francs."
Then he stopped as if that told the whole story, so said the baron,
"What of that?"
"Sir," came back from the enlightened Alphonse, "I have five thousand
francs now."--_Warwick James Price_.
Smart Society is made up of the worldly, the fleshy, and the
"What are her days at home?"
"Oh, a society leader has no days at home anymore. Nowadays she has her
Society consists of two classes, the upper and the lower. The latter
cultivates the dignity of labor, the former the labor of
There was a young person called Smarty,
Who sent out his cards for a party;
So exclusive and few
Were the friends that he knew
That no one was present but Smarty.
A New York firm recently hung the following sign at the entrance of a
large building: "Wanted: Sixty girls to sew buttons on the sixth floor."
Reporters are obliged to write their descriptions of accidents hastily
and often from meager data, and in the attempt to make them vivid they
sometimes make them ridiculous; for example, a New York City paper a few
days ago, in describing a collision between a train and a motor bus,
said: "The train, too, was filled with passengers. Their shrieks mingled
with the _cries of the dead_ and the dying of the bus!"
"I thought your father looked very handsome with his gray hairs."
"Yes, dear old chap. I gave him those."
"A friend of mine, traveling in Ireland, stopped for a drink of milk at
a white cottage with a thatched roof, and, as he sipped his refreshment,
he noted, on a center table under a glass dome, a brick with a faded
rose upon the top of it.
"'Why do you cherish in this way,' my friend said to his host, 'that
common brick and that dead rose?'
"'Shure, sir,' was the reply, 'there's certain memories attachin' to
them. Do ye see this big dent in my head? Well, it was made by that
"'But the rose?' said my friend.
His host smiled quietly. "'The rose,' he explained, 'is off the grave of
the man that threw the brick.'"
There are two times in a man's life when he should not speculate: when
he can't afford it, and when he can.--_Mark Twain_.
"I always said old Cornelius Husk was slow," said one Quag man to
"Why, what's he been doin' now?" the other asked.
"Got himself run over by a hearse!"
"So you heard the bullet whiz past you?" asked the lawyer of the darky.
"Yes, sah, heard it twict."
"Heard it whiz when it passed me, and heard it again when I passed it."
A near race riot happened in a southern town. The negroes gathered in
one crowd and the whites in another. The whites fired their revolvers
into the air, and the negroes took to their heels. Next day a plantation
owner said to one of his men: "Sam, were you in that crowd that gathered
last night?" "Yassir." "Did you run like the wind, Sam?" "No, sir. I
didn't run like the wind,'deed I didn't. But I passed two niggers that
was running like the wind."
A guest in a Cincinnati hotel was shot and killed. The negro porter who
heard the shooting was a witness at the trial.
"How many shots did you hear?" asked the lawyer.
"Two shots, sah," he replied.
"How far apart were they?"
'"Bout like dis way," explained the negro, clapping his hands with an
interval of about a second between claps.
"Where were you when the first shot was fired?"
"Shinin' a gemman's shoe in the basement of de hotel."
"Where were you when the second shot was fired?"
"Ah was passin' de Big Fo' depot."
"Is there anyone present who wishes the prayers of the congregation for
a relative or friend?" asks the minister.
"I do," says the angular lady arising from the rear pew. "I want the
congregation to pray for my husband."
"Why, sister Abigail!" replies the minister. "You have no husband as
"Yes, but I want you all to pitch in an' pray for one for me!" Some time
ago the wife of an assisstant state officer gave a party to a lot of old
maids of her town. She asked each one to bring a photograph of the man
who had tried to woo and wed her. Each of the old maids brought a
photograph and they were all pictures of the same man, the hostess's
Maude Adams was one day discussing with her old negro "mammy" the
approaching marriage of a friend.
"When is you gwine to git married, Miss Maudie?" asked the mammy, who
took a deep interest in her talented young mistress.
"I don't know, mammy," answered the star. "I don't think I'll ever get
"Well," sighed mammy, in an attempt to be philosophical, "they do say
ole maids is the happies' kind after they quits strugglin'."
Here's to the Bachelor, so lonely and gay,
For it's not his fault, he was born that way;
And here's to the Spinster, so lonely and good;
For it's not her fault, she hath done what she could.
An old maid on the wintry side of fifty, hearing of the marriage of a
pretty young lady, her friend, observed with a deep and sentimental
sigh: "Well, I suppose it is what we must all come to."
A famous spinster, known throughout the country for her charities, was
entertaining a number of little girls from a charitable institution.
After the luncheon, the children were shown through the place, in order
that they might enjoy the many beautiful things it contained.
"This," said the spinster, indicating a statue, "is Minerva."
"Was Minerva married?" asked one of the little girls.
"No, my child," said the spinster, with a smile; "Minerva was the
Goddess of Wisdom."--_E.T_.
There once was a lonesome, lorn spinster,
And luck had for years been ag'inst her;
When a man came to burgle
She shrieked, with a gurgle,
"Stop thief, while I call in a min'ster!"
Think twice before you speak, and then you may be able to say something
more aggraviting than if you spoke right out at once.
A man had for years employed a steady German workman. One day Jake came
to him and asked to be excused from work the next day.
"Certainly, Jake," beamed the employer. "What are you going to do?"
"Vall," said Jake slowly. "I tink I must go by mein wife's funeral. She
After the lapse of a few weeks Jake again approached his boss for a day
"All right, Jake, but what are you going to do this time?"
"Aber," said Jake, "I go to make me, mit mein fraeulein, a wedding."
"What? So soon? Why, it's only been three weeks since you buried your
"Ach!" replied Jake, "I don't hold spite long."
In the spring the housemaid's fancy
Lightly turns from pot and pan
To the greater necromancy
Of a young unmarried man.
You can hold her through the winter,
And she'll work around and sing,
But it's just as good as certain
She will marry in the spring.
It is easy enough to look pleasant,
When the spring comes along with a rush;
But the fellow worth-while
Is the one who can smile
When he slips and sits down in the slush.
--_Leslie Van Every_.
One of the ushers approached a man who appeared to be annoying those
"Don't you like the show?"
"Then why do you persist in hissing the performers?"
"Why, m-man alive, I w-was-n't h-hissing! I w-was s-s-im-ply
s-s-s-saying to S-s-s-sammie that the s-s-s-singing is s-s-s-superb."
A man who stuttered badly went to a specialist and after ten difficult
lessons learned to say quite distinctly, "Peter Piper picked a peck of
pickled peppers." His friends congratulated him upon this splendid
"Yes," said the man doubtfully, "but it's s-s-such a d-d-deucedly
d-d-d-difficult rem-mark to w-w-work into an ordin-n-nary
c-c-convers-s-sa-tion, y' know."
A statesman is a deal politician.--_Mr. Dooley_.
A statesman is a man who finds out which way the crowd is going, then
jumps in front and yells like blazes.
An earnest preacher in Georgia, who has a custom of telling the Lord all
the news in his prayers, recently began a petition for help against the
progress of wickedness in his town, with the statement:
"Oh, Thou great Jehovah, crime is on the increase. It is becoming more
prevalent daily. I can prove it to you by statistics."
PATIENT--"Tell me candidly, Doc, do you think I'll pull through?"
DOCTOR--"Oh, you're bound to get well--you can't help yourself. _The
Medical Record_ shows that out of one hundred cases like yours, one per
cent invariably recovers. I've treated ninety-nine cases, and every one
of them died. Why, man alive, you can't die if you try! There's no
humbug in statistics."
"Can I get a steak here and catch the one o'clock train?"
"It depends on your teeth, sir."
"Can you tell what steam is?" asked the examiner.
"Why, sure, sir," replied Patrick confidently. "Steam is--Why--er--it's
wather thos's gone crazy wid the heat."
STEAMSHIPS AND STEAMBOATS
"That new steamer they're building is a whopper," says the man with the
shoe button nose.
"Yes," agrees the man with the recalcitrant hair, "but my uncle is going
to build one so long that when a passenger gets seasick in one end of it
he can go to the other end and be clear away from the storm."
A beautiful statuesque blond had left New York to act as stenographer to
a dignified Philadelphian of Quaker descent. On the morning of her first
appearance she went straight to the desk of her employer.
"I presume," she remarked, "that you begin the day over here the same as
they do in New York?"
"Oh, yes," replied the employer, without glancing up from a letter he
"Well, hurry up and kiss me, then," was the startling rejoinder, "I want
to get to work."
A grain broker in New Boston, Maine,
Said, "That market gives me a pain;
I can hardly bear it,
To bull--I don't dare it,
For it's going against the grain."
A bird dog belonging to a man in Mulvane disappeared last week. The
owner put this "ad" in the paper and insisted that it be printed exactly
as he wrote it:
LOST OR RUN AWAY--One livver culered burd dog called Jim. Will show
signs of hyderfobby in about three days. The dog came home the following
"Boy, take these flowers to Miss Bertie Bohoo, Room 12."
"My, sir, you're the fourth gentleman wot's sent her flowers to-day."
"What's that? What the deuce? W--who sent the others?"
"Oh, they didn't send any names. They all said, 'She'll know where they
"Well, here, take my card, and tell her these are from the same one who
sent the other three boxes."
The little girl was having a great deal of trouble pronouncing some of
the words she met with. "Vinegar" had given her the most trouble, and
she was duly grieved to know that the village was being entertained by
her efforts in this direction.
She was sent one day to the store with the vinegar-jug, to get it
filled, and had no intention of amusing the people who were gathered in
the store. So she handed the jug to the clerk with:
"Smell the mouth of it and give me a quart."
A young couple had been courting for several years, and the young man
seemed to be in no hurry to marry. Finally, one day, he said:
"Sall, I canna marry thee."
"How's that?" asked she.
"I've changed my mind," said he.
"Well, I'll tell thee what we'll do," said she. "If folks know that it's
thee as has given me up I shanna be able to get another chap; but if
they think I've given thee up then I can get all I want. So we'll have
banns published and when the wedding day comes the parson will say to
thee, 'Wilt thou have this woman to be thy wedded wife?' and thou must
say, 'I will.' And when he says to me, 'Wilt thou have this man to be
thy wedded husband?' I shall say, 'I winna.'"
The day came, and when the minister asked the important question the man
Then the parson said to the woman:
"Wilt thou have this man to be thy wedded husband?" and she said:
"Why," said the young man furiously, "you said you would say 'I winna.'"
"I know that," said the young woman, "but I've changed my mind since."
Charles Stuart, formerly senator from Michigan, was traveling by stage
through his own state. The weather was bitter cold, the snow deep, and
the roads practically unbroken. The stage was nearly an hour late at the
dinner station and everybody was cross and hungry.
In spite of the warning, "Ten minutes only for refreshments," Senator
Stuart sat down to dinner with his usual deliberation. When he had
finished his first cup of coffee the other passengers were leaving the
table. By the time his second cup arrived the stage was at the door.
"All aboard!" shouted the driver. The senator lingered and called for a
third cup of coffee.
While the household, as was the custom, assembled at the door to see the
stage oft, the senator calmly continued his meal. Suddenly, just as the
stage was starting, he pounded violently on the dining-room table. The
landlord hurried in. The senator wanted a dish of rice-pudding. When it
came he called for a spoon. There wasn't a spoon to be found.
"That shock-headed fellow took 'em!" exclaimed the landlady. "I knew him
for a thief the minute I laid eyes on him."
The landlord jumped to the same conclusion.
"Hustle after that stage!" he shouted to the sheriff, who was untying
his horse from the rail in front of the tavern. "Bring 'em all back.
They've taken the silver!"
A few minutes later the stage, in charge of the sheriff, swung around in
front of the house. The driver was in a fury.
"Search them passengers!" insisted the landlord.
But before the officer could move, the senator opened the stage door,
stepped inside, then leaned out, touched the sheriff's arm and
"Tell the landlord he'll find his spoons in the coffee-pot."
Any one who has ever traveled on the New York subway in rush hours can
easily appreciate the following:
A little man, wedged into the middle of a car, suddenly thought of
pickpockets, and quite as suddenly remembered that he had some money in
his overcoat. He plunged his hand into his pocket and was somewhat
shocked upon encountering the fist of a fat fellow-passenger.
"Aha!" snorted the latter. "I caught you that time!"
"Leggo!" snarled the little man. "Leggo my hand!"
"Pickpocket!" hissed the fat man.
"Scoundrel!" retorted the little one.
Just then a tall man in their vicinity glanced up from his paper.
"I'd like to get off here," he drawled, "if you fellows don't mind
taking your hands out of my pocket."
Nothing succeeds like excess.--_Life_.
Nothing succeeds like looking successful.--_Henriette Corkland_.
Success in life often consists in knowing just when to disagree with
A New Orleans lawyer was asked to address the boys of a business school.
"My young friends, as I approached the entrance to this room I noticed
on the panel of the door a word eminently appropriate to an institution
of this kind. It expresses the one thing most useful to the average man
when he steps into the arena of life. It was--"
"Pull," shouted the boys, in a roar of laughter, and the lawyer felt
that he had taken his text from the wrong side of the door.
I'd rather be a Could Be
If I could not be an Are;
For a Could Be is a May Be,
With a chance of touching par.
I'd rather be a Has Been
Than a Might Have Been, by far;
For a Might Have Been has never been,
But a Has was once an Are.
'Tis not in mortals to command success,
But we'll do more, Sempronius,--
We'll deserve it.
There are two ways of rising in the world: either by one's own industry
or profiting by the foolishness of others.--_La Bruyere_.
Success is counted sweetest
By those who ne'er succeed.
_See also_ Making good.
When a married woman goes out to look after her rights, her husband is
usually left at home to look after his wrongs.--_Child Harold_.
"'Ullo, Bill, 'ow's things with yer?"
"Lookin' up, Tom, lookin' up."
"Igh cost o' livin' not 'ittin' yer, Bill?"
"Not so 'ard, Tom--not so 'ard. The missus 'as went 'orf on a hunger
stroike and me butcher's bills is cut in arf!"
I'd hate t' be married t' a suffragette an' have t' eat Battle Creek
FIRST ENGLISHMAN--"Why do you allow your wife to be a militant
SECOND ENGLISHMAN--"When she's busy wrecking things outside we have
comparative peace at home."--_Life_.
Recipe for a suffragette:
To the power that already lies in her hands
You add equal rights with the gents;
You'll find votes that used to bring two or three plunks,
Marked down to ninety-eight cents.
When Mrs. Pankhurst, the English suffragette, was in America she met and
became very much attached to Mrs. Lee Preston, a New York woman of
singular cleverness of mind and personal attraction. After the
acquaintance had ripened somewhat Mrs. Pankhurst ventured to say:
"I do hope, Mrs. Preston, that you are a suffragette."
"Oh, dear no!" replied Mrs. Preston; "you know, Mrs. Pankhurst, I am
BILL--"Jake said he was going to break up the suffragette meeting the
other night. Were his plans carried out?"
DILL--"No, Jake was."--_Life_.
SLASHER--"Been in a fight?"
MASHER--"No. I tried to flirt with a pretty suffragette."--_Judge_.
"What sort of a ticket does your suffragette club favor?"
"Well," replied young Mrs. Torkins, "if we owned right up, I think most
of us would prefer matinee tickets."
_See also_ Woman suffrage.
The Chinese Consul at San Francisco, at a recent dinner, discussed his
"There is one custom," said a young girl, "that I can't understand--and
that is the Chinese custom of committing suicide by eating gold-leaf. I
can't understand how gold-leaf can kill."
"The partaker, no doubt," smiled the Consul, "succumbs from a
consciousness of inward gilt."
GABE--"What are you going back to that place for this summer? Why, last
year it was all mosquitoes and no fishing."
STEVE--"The owner tells me that he has crossed the mosquitoes with the
fish, and guarantees a bite every second."
"I suppose," said the city man, "there are some queer characters around
an old village like this."
"You'll find a good many," admitted the native, "when the hotels fill
Albert was a solemn-eyed, spiritual-looking child. "Nurse," he said one
day, leaving his blocks and laying his hand on her knee, "nurse, is this
"No, dear," said the nurse, "this is not Sunday; it is Thursday."
"I'm so sorry," he said, sadly, and went back to his blocks.
The next day and the next in his serious manner he asked the same
question, and the nurse tearfully said to the cook:
"That child is too good for this world."
On Sunday the question was repeated, and the nurse, with a sob in her
voice, said: "Yes, lambie, this is God's day."
"Then where is the funny paper?" he demanded.
TEACHER-"Good little boys do not skate on Sunday, Corky. Don't you think
that is very nice of them?"
TEACHER--"And why is it nice of them, Corky?"
CORKY--"Aw, it leaves more room on de ice! See?"
Of all the days that's in the week,
I dearly love but one day,
And that's the day that comes betwixt
A Saturday and Monday.
O day of rest! How beautiful, how fair,
How welcome to the weary and the old!
Day of the Lord! and truce to earthly care!
Day of the Lord, as all our days should be!
"Now, Willie," said the superintendent's little boy, addressing the
blacksmith's little boy, who had come over for a frolic, "we'll play
'Sabbath School.' You give me a nickel every Sunday for six months, and
then at Christmas I'll give you a ten-cent bag of candy."
When Lottie returned from her first visit to Sunday-school, she was
asked what she had learned.
"God made the world in six days and was arrested on the seventh day,"
was her version of the lesson imparted.
The teacher asked: "When did Moses live?"
After the silence had become painful she ordered: "Open your Old
Testaments. What does it say there?"
A boy answered: "Moses, 4000."
"Now," said the teacher, "why didn't you know when Moses lived?"
"Well," replied the boy, "I thought it was his telephone
"How many of you boys," asked the Sunday-school superintendent, "can
bring two other boys next Sunday?"
There was no response until a new recruit raised his hand hesitatingly.
"I can't bring two, but there's one little feller I can lick, and I'll
do my damnedest to bring him."
Superstition is a premature explanation overstaying its time.--_George
"Where are you goin', ma?" asked the youngest of five children.
"I'm going to a surprise party, my dear," answered the mother.
"Are we all goin', too?"
"No, dear. You weren't invited."
After a few moments' deep thought:
"Say, ma, then don't you think they'd be lots more surprised if you did
take us all?"
Two negro roustabouts at New Orleans were continually bragging about
their ability as long distance swimmers and a steamboat man got up a
match. The man who swam the longest distance was to receive $5. The
Alabama Whale immediately stripped on the dock, but the Human Steamboat
said he had some business and would return in a few minutes. The Whale
swam the river four or five times for exercise and by that time the
Human Steamboat returned. He wore a pair of swimming trunks and had a
sheet iron cook stove strapped on his back. Tied around his neck were a
dozen packages containing bread, flour, bacon and other eatables. The
Whale gazed at his opponent in amazement.
"Whar yo' vittles?" demanded the Human Steamboat.
"Vittles fo' what?" asked the Whale.
"Don't yo' ask me fo' nothin' on the way ovah," warned the Steamboat.
"Mah fust stop is New York an' mah next stop is London."
A sympathizer is a fellow that's for you as long as it don't cost
Dwight L. Moody was riding in a car one day when it was hailed by a man
much the worse for liquor, who presently staggered along the car between
two rows of well-dressed people, regardless of tender feet.
Murmurs and complaints arose on all sides and demands were heard that
the offender should be ejected at once.
But amid the storm of abuse one friendly voice was raised. Mr. Moody
rose from his seat, saying:
"No, no, friends! Let the man sit down and be quiet."
The drunken one turned, and, seizing the famous evangelist by the hand,
"Thank ye, sir--thank ye! I see you know what it is to be drunk."
The man rushed excitedly into the smoking car. "A lady has fainted in
the next car! Has anybody got any whiskey?" he asked.
Instantly a half-dozen flasks were thrust out to him. Taking the nearest
one, he turned the bottle up and took a big drink, then, handing the
flask back, said, "Thank you. It always did make me feel sick to see a
A tramp went to a farmhouse, and sitting down in the front yard began to
eat the grass.
The housewife's heart went out to him: "Poor man, you must indeed be
hungry. Come around to the back."
The tramp beamed and winked at the hired man.
"There," said the housewife, when the tramp hove in sight, pointing to a
circle of green grass, "try that: you will find that grass so much
Strengthen me by sympathizing with my strength, not my weakness.--_Amos
"I don't believe any two words in the English language are synonymous."
"Oh, I don't know. What's the matter with 'raise' and 'lift'?"
"There's a big difference. I 'raise' chickens and have a neighbor who
has been known to 'lift' them."
It was at the private theatricals, and the young man wished to
compliment his hostess, saying:
"Madam, you played your part splendidly. It fits you to perfection."
"I'm afraid not. A young and pretty woman is needed for that part," said
the smiling hostess.
"But, madam, you have positively proved the contrary."
TAFT, WILLIAM HOWARD
When Mr. Taft was on his campaigning tour in the west, before he had
been elected President, he stopped at the home of an old friend. It was
a small house, not well built, and as he walked about in his room the
unsubstantial little house fairly shook with his tread. When he got into
bed that receptacle, unused to so much weight, gave way, precipitating
Taft on the floor.
His friend hurried to his door.
"What's the matter, Bill?"
"Oh, I'm all right, I guess," Taft called out to his friend
good-naturedly; "but say, Joe, if you don't find me here in the morning
look in the cellar."
One morning a few summers ago President Taft, wearing the largest
bathing suit known to modern times, threw his substantial form into the
cooling waves of Beverly Bay. Shortly afterward one neighbor said to
another: "Let's go bathing."
"How can we?" was the response. "The President is using the ocean."
_See_ Actors and actresses.
Some years ago, Mark Twain was a guest of honor at an opera box-party
given by a prominent member of New York society. The hostess had been
particularly talkative all during the performance--to Mr. Clemens's
Toward the end of the opera, she turned to him and said gushingly:
"Oh, my dear Mr. Clemens, I do so want you to be with us next Friday
evening. I'm certain you will like it the opera will be 'Tosca.'"
"Charmed, I'm sure," replied Clemens. "I've never heard you in that."
It was a beautiful evening and Ole, who had screwed up courage to take
Mary for a ride, was carried away by the magic of the night.
"Mary," he asked, "will you marry me?"
"Yes, Ole," she answered softly.
Ole lapsed into a silence that at last became painful to his fiancee.
"Ole," she said desperately, "why don't you say something?"
"Ay tank," Ole replied, "they bane too much said already."
"Sir," said the sleek-looking agent, approaching the desk of the meek,
meaching-looking man and opening one of those folding thingumjigs
showing styles of binding, "I believe I can interest you in this massive
set of books containing the speeches of the world's greatest orators.
Seventy volumes, one dollar down and one dollar a month until the price,
six hundred and eighty dollars has been paid. This set of books gives
you the most celebrated speeches of the greatest talkers the world has
ever known and--"
"Let me see the index," said the meek man.
The agent handed it to him and he looked through it carefully and
methodically, running his finger along the list of names.
Reaching the end he handed the index back to the agent and said: "It
isn't what you claim it is. I happen to know the greatest talker in the
world, and you haven't her in the index."
A guest was expected for dinner and Bobby had received five cents as the
price of his silence during the meal. He was as quiet as a mouse until,
discovering that his favorite dessert was being served, he could no
longer curb his enthusiasm. He drew the coin from his pocket, and
rolling it across the table, exclaimed: "Here's your nickel, Mamma. I'd
A belated voyager in search of hilarity stumbled home after one o'clock
and found his wife waiting for him. The curtain lecture that followed
was of unusual virulence, and in the midst of it he fell asleep.
Awakening a few hours later he found his wife still pouring forth a
regular cascade of denunciation. Eyeing her sleepily he said curiously,
"Say, are you talking yet or again?"
"You must not talk all the time, Ethel," said the mother who had been
"When will I be old enough to, Mama?" asked the little girl.
While the late Justice Brewer was judge in a minor court he was
presiding at the trial of a wife's suit for separation and alimony. The
defendant acknowledged that he hadn't spoken to his wife in five years,
and Judge Brewer put in a question.
"What explanation have you," he asked severely, "for not speaking to
your wife in five years?"
"Your Honor," replied the husband, "I didn't like to interrupt the
She was in an imaginative mood.
"Henry, dear," she said after talking two hours without a recess, "I
sometimes wish I were a mermaid."
"It would be fatal," snapped her weary hubby.
"Fatal! In what way?"
"Why, you couldn't keep your mouth closed long enough to keep from
And after that, Henry did not get any supper.
"Here comes Blinkers. He's got a new baby, and he'll talk us to death."
"Well, here comes a neighbor of mine who has a new setter dog. Let's
introduce them and leave them to their fate."--_Life_.
A street-car was getting under way when two women, rushing from opposite
sides of the street to greet each other, met right in the middle of the
car-track and in front of the car. There the two stopped and began to
talk. The car stopped, too, but the women did not appear to realize that
it was there. Certain of the passengers, whose heads were immediately
thrust out of the windows to ascertain what the trouble was, began to
make sarcastic remarks, but the two women heeded them not.
Finally the motorman showed that he had a saving sense of humor. Leaning
over the dash-board, he inquired, in the gentlest of tones:
"Pardon me, ladies, but shall I get you a couple of chairs?"
A--"I used a word in speaking to my wife which offended her sorely a
week ago. She has not spoken a syllable to me since."
B--"Would you mind telling me what it was?"
In general those who have nothing to say Contrive to spend the longest
time in doing it.--_Lowell_.
_See also_ Wives.
"You'll be late for supper, sonny," said the merchant, in passing a
small boy who was carrying a package.
"No, I won't," was the reply. "I've dot de meat."--_Mabel Long_.
"How does it happen that you are five minutes late at school this
morning?" the teacher asked severely.
"Please, ma'am," said Ethel, "I must have overwashed myself."
Why not have an illuminated sign on the statue of Liberty saying,
"America expects every man to pay his duty?"--_Kent Packard_.
"It isn't wise for a painter to be too frank in his criticisms," said
Robert Henri at a luncheon. "I know a very outspoken painter whose
little daughter called at a friend's house and said:
'Show me your new parlor rug, won't you, please?'"
So, with great pride, the hostess led the little girl into the
drawing-room, and raised all the blinds, so that the light might stream
in abundantly upon the gorgeous colors of an expensive Kirmanshah.
The little girl stared down at the rug in silence. Then, as she turned
away, she said in a rather disappointed voice:
"'It doesn't make _me_ sick!'"
A rural school has a pretty girl as its teacher, but she was much
troubled because many of her pupils were late every morning. At last she
made the announcement that she would kiss the first pupil to arrive at
the schoolhouse the next morning. At sunrise the largest three boys of
her class were sitting on the doorstep of the schoolhouse, and by six
o'clock every boy in the school and four of the directors were waiting
for her to arrive.
"Why did you break your engagement with that school teacher?"
"If I failed to show up at her house every evening, she expected me to
bring a written excuse signed by my mother."
Among the youngsters belonging to a colege settlement in a New England
city was one little girl who returned to her humble home with glowing
accounts of the new teacher.
"She's a perfect lady," exclaimed the enthusiastic youngster.
The child's mother gave her a doubtful look. "How do _you_ know?" she
said. "You've only known her two days."
"It's easy enough tellin'," continued the child. "I know she's a perfect
lady, because she makes you feel polite all the time."
MOTHER--"The teacher complains you have not had a correct lesson for a
month; why is it?"
SON--"She always kisses me when I get them right."
There was a meeting of the new teachers and the old. It was a sort of
love feast, reception or whatever you call it. Anyhow all the teachers
got together and pretended they didn't have a care in the world. After
the eats were et the symposiarch proposed a toast:
"Long Live Our Teachers!"
It was drunk enthusiastically. One of the new teachers was called on to
respond. He modestly accepted. His answer was:
TEACHER--"Now, Willie, where did you get that chewing gum? I want the
WILLIE--"You don't want the truth, teacher, an' I'd ruther not tell a
TEACHER--"How dare you say I don't want the truth! Tell me at once where
you got that chewing-gum."
WILLIE--"Under your desk."
Grave is the Master's look; his forehead wears
Thick rows of wrinkles, prints of worrying cares:
Uneasy lie the heads of all that rule,
His worst of all whose kingdom is a school.
Two Irishmen who had just landed were eating their dinner in a hotel,
when Pat spied a bottle of horseradish. Not knowing what it was he
partook of a big mouthful, which brought tears to his eyes.
Mike, seeing Pat crying, exclaimed: "Phat be ye cryin' fer?"
Pat, wishing to have Mike fooled also, exclaimed: "I'm crying fer me
poor ould mother, who's dead way over in Ireland."
By and by Mike took some of the radish, whereupon tears filled _his_
eyes. Pat, seeing them, asked his friend what he was crying for.
Mike replied: "Because ye didn't die at the same time yer poor ould
There was an old man of Tarentum,
Who gnashed his false teeth till he bent 'em:
And when asked for the cost
Of what he had lost,
Said, "I really can't tell for I rent 'em!"
--_Gilbert K. Chesterton_.
Pat came to the office with his jaw very much swollen from a tooth he
desired to have pulled. But when the suffering son of Erin got into the
dentist's chair and saw the gleaming pair of forceps approaching his
face, he positively refused to open his mouth.
The dentist quietly told his office boy to prick his patient with a pin,
and when Pat opened his mouth to yell the dentist seized the tooth, and
out it came.
"It didn't hurt as much as you expected it would, did it?" the dentist
"Well, no," replied Pat hesitatingly, as if doubting the truthfulness of
his admission. "But," he added, placing his hand on the spot where the
boy jabbed him with the pin, "begorra, little did I think the roots
would reach down like that."
An Irishman with one side of his face badly swollen stepped into Dr.
Wicten's office and inquired if the dentist was in. "I am the dentist,"
said the doctor.
"Well, then, I want ye to see what's the matter wid me tooth."
The doctor examined the offending molar, and explained: "The nerve is
dead; that's what's the matter."
"Thin, be the powers," the Irishman exclaimed, "the other teeth must be
houldin' a wake over it!"
For there was never yet philosopher
That could endure the toothache patiently.
Two girls were talking over the wire. Both were discussing what they
should wear to the Christmas party. In the midst of this important
conversation a masculine voice interrupted, asking humbly for a number.
One of the girls became indignant and scornfully asked:
"What line do you think you are on, anyhow?"
"Well," said the man, "I am not sure, but, judging from what I have
heard, I should say I was on a clothesline."
When Grover Cleveland's little girl was quite young her father once
telephoned to the White House from Chicago and asked Mrs. Cleveland to
bring the child to the 'phone. Lifting the little one up to the
instrument, Mrs. Cleveland watched her expression change from
bewilderment to wonder and then to fear. It was surely her father's
voice--yet she looked at the telephone incredulously. After examining
the tiny opening in the receiver the little girl burst into tears. "Oh,
Mamma!" she sobbed. "How can we ever get Papa out of that little hole?"
New York Elks are having a lot of fun with a member of their lodge, a
Fifteenth Street jeweler. The other day his wife was in the jewelry
store when the 'phone rang. She answered it.
"I want to speak to Mr. H----," said a woman's voice.
"Who is this?' demanded the jeweler's wife.
"Well, Elizabeth, this is his wife. Now, madam, what do you want?"
"I want to talk to Mr. H----."
"You'll talk to me."
"Please let me speak to Mr. H----."
The jeweler's wife grew angry. "Look here, young lady," she said, "who
are you that calls my husband and insists on talking to him?"
"I'm the telephone operator at Elizabeth, N.J.," came the reply.
And now the Elks take turns calling the jeweler up and telling him it's
SUBSCRIBER--"I vas talking mit my husband und now I don't hear him any
more. You must of pushed him off de vire."
A German woman called up Central and instructed her as follows:
"Ist dis de mittle? Veil dis is Lena. Hang my hustband on dis line. I
vant to speak mit him."
In China when the subscriber rings up exchange the operator may be
expected to ask:
"What number does the honorable son of the moon and stars desire?"
Silence. Then the exchange resumes.
"Will the honorable person graciously forgive the inadequacy of the
insignificant service and permit this humbled slave of the wire to
inform him that the never-to-be-sufficiently censured line is busy?"
Recipe for a telephone operator:
To fearful and wonderful rolling of "r's,"
And a voice cold as thirty below,
Add a dash of red pepper, some ginger and sass
If you leave out the "o" in "hello"!
Hearing the crash of china Dinah's mistress arrived in time to see her
favorite coffee-set in pieces. The sight was too much for her mercurial
temper. "Dinah," she said, "I cannot stand it any longer. I want you to
go. I want you to go soon, I want you to go right now."
"Lawzee," replied Dinah, "this surely am a co-instence. I was this very
minute cogitatin' that same thought in my own mind--I want to go, I
thank the good Lawd I kin go, and I pity your husband, ma'am, that he
A Boston deacon who was a zealous advocate for the cause of temperance
employed a carpenter to make some alterations in his home. In repairing
a corner near the fireplace, it was found necessary to remove the
wainscot, when some things were brought to light which greatly
astonished the workman. A brace of decanters, sundry bottles containing
"something to take," a pitcher, and tumblers were cosily reposing in
their snug quarters. The joiner ran to the proprietor with the
"Well, I declare!" exclaimed the deacon. "That is curious, sure enough.
It must be old Captain Bunce that left those things there when he
occupied the premises thirty years since."
"Perhaps he did, returned the discoverer, but, Deacon, that ice in the
pitcher must have been well frozen to remain solid."--_Abbie C. Dixon_.
Here's to a temperance supper,
With water in glasses tall,
And coffee and tea to end with
And me not there at all.
The best prohibition story of the season comes from Kansas where, it is
said, a local candidate stored a lot of printed prohibition literature
in his barn, but accidentally left the door open and a herd of milch
cows came in and ate all the pamphlets. As a result every cow in the
herd went dry.--_Adrian Times_.
A Michigan citizen recently received a letter from a Kentucky whisky
house, requesting him to send them the names of a dozen or more persons
who would like to get some fine whisky shipped to them at a very low
price. The letter wound up by saying:
"We will give you a commission on all the orders sent in by parties
whose names you send us."
The Michigan man belonged to a practical joke class, and filled in the
names of some of his prohibition friends on the blank spaces left for
He had forgotten all about his supposed practical joke when Monday he
received another letter from the same house. He supposed it was a
request for some more names, and was just about to throw the
communication in the waste basket when it occurred to him to send the
name of another old friend to the whisky house. He accordingly tore open
the envelope, and came near collapsing when he found a check for $4.80,
representing his commission on the sale of whisky to the parties whose
names he had sent in about three weeks before.
Abstinence is as easy to me as temperance would be difficult.--_Samuel
The bigness of Texas is evident from a cursory examination of the map.
But its effect upon the people of that state is not generally known. It
is about six hundred miles from Brownsville, at the bottom of the map,
to Dallas, which is several hundreds of miles from the top of the map.
Hence the following conversation in Brownsville recently between two of
the old-time residents:
"Where have you been lately, Bob? I ain't seen much of you."
"Been on a trip north."
"Where'd you go?"
"Went to Dallas."
"Have a good time?"
"Naw; I never did like them damn Yankees, anyway."
In the Tennessee mountains a mountaineer preacher, who had declared
colleges "the works of the devil," was preaching without previous
meditation an inspirational sermon from the text, "The voice of the
turtle shall be heard in the land." Not noting that the margin read
"turtle-dove," he proceeded in this manner:
"This text, my hearers, strikes me as one of the most peculiar texts in
the whole book, because we all know that a turtle ain't got no voice.
But by the inward enlightenment I begin to see the meaning and will
expose it to you. Down in the hollers by the streams and ponds you have
gone in the springtime, my brethren, and observed the little turtles,
a-sleeping on the logs. But at the sound of the approach of a human
being, they went _kerflop-kerplunk_, down into the water. This I say,
then, is the meaning of the prophet: he, speakinging figgeratively,
referred to the _kerflop_ of the turtle as the _voice_ of the turtle,
and hence we see that in those early times the prophet, looking down at
the ages to come, clearly taught and prophesied the doctrine I have
always preached to this congregation--_that immersion is the only form