Part 5 out of 14
oftener, with a view ultimately to forming an alliance, and he has
responded favorably. May I ask if you will ratify the arrangement, as a
"Mr. von Harris," answered the daughter of the eminent diplomat, "don't
you think it would have been a more graceful recognition of my
administrative entity if you had asked me first?"
I call'd the devil and he came,
And with wonder his form did I closely scan;
He is not ugly, and is not lame,
But really a handsome and charming man.
A man in the prime of life is the devil,
Obliging, a man of the world, and civil;
A diplomatist too, well skill'd in debate,
He talks quite glibly of church and state.
_See_ Military discipline; Parents.
A train in Arizona was boarded by robbers, who went through the pockets
of the luckless passengers. One of them happened to be a traveling
salesman from New York, who, when his turn came, fished out $200, but
rapidly took $4 from the pile and placed it in his vest pocket.
"What do you mean by that?" asked the robber, as he toyed with his
revolver. Hurriedly came the answer: "Mine frent, you surely vould not
refuse me two per zent discount on a strictly cash transaction like
When you can, use discretion; when you can't, use a club.
One eastern railroad has a regular form for reporting accidents to
animals on its right of way. Recently a track foreman had the killing of
a cow to report. In answer to the question, "Disposition of carcass?" he
wrote: "Kind and gentle."
There was one man who had a reputation for being even tempered. He was
A regiment of regulars was making a long, dusty march across the rolling
prairie land of Montana last summer. It was a hot, blistering day and
the men, longing for water and rest, were impatient to reach the next
A rancher rode past.
"Say, friend," called out one of the men, "how far is it to the next
"Oh, a matter of two miles or so, I reckon," called back the rancher.
Another long hour dragged by, and another rancher was encountered.
"How far to the next town?" the men asked him eagerly.
"Oh, a good two miles."
A weary half-hour longer of marching, and then a third rancher.
"Hey, how far's the next town?"
"Not far," was the encouraging answer. "Only about two miles."
"Well," sighed an optimistic sergeant, "thank God, we're holdin' our
"When a woman marries and then divorces her husband inside of a week
what would you call it?"
"Taking his name in vain."--_Princeton Tiger_.
LADY (to tramp who had been commissioned to find her lost poodle)--"The
poor little darling, where did you find him?"
TRAMP--"Oh, a man 'ad 'im, miss, tied to a pole, and was cleaning the
windows wiv 'im!"
A family moved from the city to a suburban locality and were told that
they should get a watchdog to guard the premises at night. So they
bought the largest dog that was for sale in the kennels of a neighboring
dog fancier, who was a German. Shortly afterward the house was entered
by burglars who made a good haul, while the big dog slept. The man went
to the dog fancier and told him about it.
"Veil, vat you need now," said the dog merchant, "is a leedle dog to
vake up the big dog."
"Dogs is mighty useful beasts
They might seem bad at first
They might seem worser right along
But when they're dead
--_Ellis Parker Butler_.
"My dog took first prize at the cat show."
"How was that?"
"He took the cat."--_Judge_.
FAIR VISITOR--"Why are you giving Fido's teeth such a thorough
FOND MISTRESS--"Oh! The poor darling's just bitten some horrid person,
and, really, you know, one can't be too careful."--_Life_.
"Do you know that that bulldog of yours killed my wife's little
harmless, affectionate poodle?"
"Well, what are you going to do about it?"
"Would you be offended if I was to present him with a nice brass
Fleshy Miss Muffet
Sat down on Tuffet,
A very good dog in his way;
When she saw what she'd done,
She started to run--
And Tuffet was buried next day.
William J. Stevens, for several years local station agent at Swansea, R.
I., was peacefully promenading his platform one morning when a rash dog
ventured to snap at one of William's plump legs. Stevens promptly kicked
the animal halfway across the tracks, and was immediately confronted by
the owner, who demanded an explanation in language more forcible than
"Why," said Stevens when the other paused for breath, "your dog's mad."
"Mad! Mad! You double-dyed blankety-blank fool, he ain't mad!"
"Oh, ain't he?" cut in Stevens. "Gosh! I should be if any one kicked me
One would have it that a collie is the most sagacious of dogs, while the
other stood up for the setter.
"I once owned a setter," declared the latter, "which was very
intelligent. I had him on the street one day, and he acted so queerly
about a certain man we met that I asked the man his name, and--"
"Oh, that's an old story!" the collie's advocate broke in sneeringly.
"The man's name was Partridge, of course, and because of that the dog
came to a set. Ho, ho! Come again!"
"You're mistaken," rejoined the other suavely. "The dog didn't come
quite to a set, though almost. As a matter of fact, the man's name was
Quayle, and the dog hesitated on account of the spelling!"--_P. R.
The more one sees of men the more one likes dogs.
_See also_ Dachshunds.
"Talk about Napoleon! That fellow Wombat is something of a strategist
"As to how?"
"Got his salary raised six months ago, and his wife hasn't found it out
A Lakewood woman was recently reading to her little boy the story of a
young lad whose father was taken ill and died, after which he set
himself diligently to work to support himself and his mother. When she
had finished her story she said:
"Dear Billy, if your papa were to die, would you work to support your
"Naw!" said Billy unexpectedly.
"But why not?"
"Ain't we got a good house to live in?"
"Yes, dearie, but we can't eat the house, you know."
"Ain't there a lot o' stuff in the pantry?"
"Yes, but that won't last forever."
"It'll last till you git another husband, won't it? You're a pretty good
Mamma gave up right there.
"I am sending you a thousand kisses," he wrote to his fair young wife
who was spending her first month away from him. Two days later he
received the following telegram: "Kisses received. Landlord refuses to
accept any of them on account." Then he woke up and forwarded a check.
_See also_ Trouble.
There was a young man of Dunbar,
Who playfully poisoned his Ma;
When he'd finished his work,
He remarked with a smirk,
"This will cause quite a family jar."
_See also_ Families; Marriage.
The average modern play calls in the first act for all our faith, in the
second for all our hope, and in the last for all our charity.--_Eugene
The young man in the third row of seats looked bored. He wasn't having a
good time. He cared nothing for the Shakespearean drama.
"What's the greatest play you ever saw?" the young woman asked,
observing his abstraction.
Instantly he brightened.
"Tinker touching a man out between second and third and getting the ball
over to Chance in time to nab the runner to first!" he said.
LARRY--"I like Professor Whatishisname in Shakespeare. He brings things
home to you that you never saw before."
HARRY--"Huh! I've got a laundryman as good as that."
I think I love and reverence all arts equally, only putting my own just
above the others.... To me it seems as if when God conceived the world,
that was Poetry; He formed it, and that was Sculpture; He colored it,
and that was Painting; He peopled it with living beings, and that was
the grand, divine, eternal Drama.--_Charlotte Cushman_.
Two women were leaving the theater after a performance of "The Doll's
"Oh, don't you _love_ Ibsen?" asked one, ecstatically. "Doesn't he just
take all the hope out of life?"
Theodore Dreiser, the novelist, was talking about criticism.
"I like pointed criticism," he said, "criticism such as I heard in the
lobby of a theater the other night at the end of the play."
"The critic was an old gentleman. His criticism, which was for his
wife's ears alone, consisted of these words:
"'Well, you would come!'"
Nat Goodwin, the American comedian, when at the Shaftesbury Theatre,
London, told of an experience he once had with a juvenile deadhead in a
town in America. Standing outside the theater a little time before the
performance was due to begin he observed a small boy with an anxious,
forlorn look on his face and a weedy-looking pup in his arms.
Goodwin inquired what was the matter, and was told that the boy wished
to sell the dog so as to raise the price of a seat in the gallery. The
actor suspected at once a dodge to secure a pass on the "sympathy
racket," but allowing himself to be taken in he gave the boy a pass. The
dog was deposited in a safe place and the boy was able to watch Goodwin
as the Gilded Fool from a good seat in the gallery. Next day Goodwin saw
the boy again near the theater, so he asked:
"Well, sonny, how did you like the show?"
"I'm glad I didn't sell my dog," was the reply.
"I hear Scribbler finally got one of his plays on the boards."
"Yes, the property man tore up his manuscript and used it in the snow
"So you think the author of this play will live, do you?" remarked the
"Yes," replied the manager of the Frozen Dog Opera House. "He's got a
five-mile start and I don't think the boys kin ketch him."--_Life_.
We all know the troubles of a dramatist are many and varied.
Here's an advertisement taken from a morning paper that shows to what a
pass a genius may come in a great city:
"Wanted--A collaborator, by a young playwright. The play is already
written; collaborator to furnish board and bed until play is produced."
WIFE--"Wretch! Show me that letter."
WIFE--"That one in your hand. It's from a woman, I can see by the
writing, and you turned pale when you saw it."
HUSBAND--"Yes. Here it is. It's your dressmaker's bill."
He who goes to bed, and goes to bed sober,
Falls as the leaves do, and dies in October;
But he who goes to bed, and does so mellow,
Lives as he ought to, and dies a good fellow.
--_Parody on Fletcher_.
I drink when I have occasion, and sometimes when I have no
I have very poor and unhappy brains for drinking. I could wish courtesy
would invent some other custom of entertainment.--_Shakespeare_.
The Frenchman loves his native wine;
The German loves his beer;
The Englishman loves his 'alf and 'alf,
Because it brings good cheer;
The Irishman loves his "whiskey straight,"
Because it gives him dizziness;
The American has no choice at all,
So he drinks the whole blamed business.
A young Englishman came to Washington and devoted his days and nights to
an earnest endeavor to drink all the Scotch whiskey there was. He
couldn't do it, and presently went to a doctor, complaining of a
"Quit drinking!" ordered the doctor.
"But, my dear sir, I cawn't. I get so thirsty."
"Well," said the doctor, "whenever you are thirsty eat an apple instead
of taking a drink."
The Englishman paid his fee and left. He met a friend to whom he told
"Bally rot!" he protested. "Fawncy eating forty apples a day!"
If you are invited to drink at any man's house more than you think is
wholesome, you may say "you wish you could, but so little makes you both
drunk and sick; that you should only be bad company by doing so."--_Lord
There is many a cup 'twixt the lip and the slip.--_Judge_.
One swallow doesn't make a summer, but it breaks a New Year's
DOCTOR (feeling Sandy's pulse in bed)--"What do you drink."
SANDY (with brightening face)--"Oh, I'm nae particular, doctor! Anything
you've got with ye."
Here's to the girls of the American shore,
I love but one, I love no more,
Since she's not here to drink her part,
I'll drink her share with all my heart.
A well-known Scottish architect was traveling in Palestine recently,
when news reached him of an addition to his family circle. The happy
father immediately provided himself with some water from the Jordan to
carry home for the christening of the infant, and returned to Scotland.
On the Sunday appointed for the ceremony he duly presented himself at
the church, and sought out the beadle in order to hand over the precious
water to his care. He pulled the flask from his pocket, but the beadle
held up a warning hand, and came nearer to whisper:
"No the noo, sir; no the noo! Maybe after the kirk's oot!"
When President Eliot of Harvard was in active service as head of the
university, reports came to him that one of his young charges was in the
habit of absorbing more liquor than was good for him, and President
Eliot determined to do his duty and look into the matter.
Meeting the young man under suspicion in the yard shortly after
breakfast one day the president marched up to him and demanded, "Young
man, do you drink?"
"Why, why, why," stammered the young man, "why, President Eliot, not so
early in the morning, thank you."
WIFE (on auto tour)--"That fellow back there said there is a road-house
a few miles down the road. Shall we stop there?"
HUSBAND--"Did he whisper it or say it out loud?"
A priest went to a barber shop conducted by one of his Irish
parishioners to get a shave. He observed the barber was suffering from a
recent celebration, but decided to take a chance. In a few moments the
barber's razor had nicked the father's cheek. "There, Pat, you have cut
me," said the priest as he raised his hand and caressed the wound. "Yis,
y'r riv'rance," answered the barber. "That shows you," continued the
priest, in a tone of censure, "what the use of liquor will do." "Yis,
y'r riv'rance," replied the barber, humbly, "it makes the skin tender."
Ex-congressman Asher G. Caruth, of Kentucky, tells this story of an
experience he once had on a visit to a little Ohio town.
"I went up there on legal business," he says, "and, knowing that I
should have to stay all night, I proceeded directly to the only hotel.
The landlord stood behind the desk and regarded me with a kindly air as
I registered. It seems that he was a little hard of hearing, a fact of
which I was not aware. As I jabbed the pen back into the dish of bird
shot, I said:
"'Can you direct me to the bank?'
"He looked at me blankly for a second, then swinging the register
around, he glanced down swiftly, caught the 'Louisville' after my name,
and an expression of complete understanding lighting up his countenance,
"'Certainly, sir. You will find the bar right through that door at the
_See also_ Drunkards; Good fellowship; Temperance; Wine.
Governor Glasscock of West Virginia, while traveling through Arizona,
noticed the dry, dusty appearance of the country.
"Doesn't it ever rain around here?" he asked one of the natives.
"Rain?" The native spat. "Rain? Why say pardner, there's bullfrogs in
this yere town over five years old that hain't learned to swim yet!"
Sing a song of sick gents,
Pockets full of rye,
Four and twenty highballs,
We wish that we might die.
Two booze-fiends were ambling homeward at an early hour, after being out
nearly all night.
"Don't your wife miss you on these occasions?" asked one.
"Not often," replied the other; "she throws pretty straight."
"Where's old Four-Fingered Pete?" asked Alkali Ike. "I ain't seen him
around here since I got back."
"Pete?" said the bartender. "Oh, he went up to Hyena Tongue and got
jagged. Went up to a hotel winder, stuck his head in and hollered
'Fire!' and everybody did."
The Irish talent for repartee has an amusing illustration in Lord
Rossmore's recent book "Things I Can Tell." While acting as magistrate
at an Irish village, Lord Rossmore said to an old offender brought
before him: "You here again?" "Yes, your honor." "What's brought you
here?" "Two policemen, your honor." "Come, come, I know that--drunk
again, I suppose?" "Yes, your honor, both of them."
The colonel came down to breakfast New Year's morning with a bandaged
"Why, colonel, what's the matter?" they asked.
"Confound it all!" the colonel answered, "we had a little party last
night, and one of the younger men got intoxicated and stepped on my
MAGISTRATE--"And what was the prisoner doing?"
CONSTABLE--"E were 'avin' a very 'eated argument with a cab driver, yer
MAGISTRATE--"But that doesn't prove he was drunk."
CONSTABLE--"Ah, but there worn't no cab driver there, yer worship."
A Scotch minister and his servant, who were coming home from a wedding,
began to consider the state into which their potations at the wedding
feast had left them.
"Sandy," said the minister, "just stop a minute here till I go ahead.
Maybe I don't walk very steady and the good wife might remark something
not just right."
He walked ahead of the servant for a short distance and then asked:
"How is it? Am I walking straight?"
"Oh, ay," answered Sandy thickly, "ye're a' recht--but who's that who's
A man in a very deep state of intoxication was shouting and kicking most
vigorously at a lamp post, when the noise attracted a near-by policeman.
"What's the matter?" he asked the energetic one.
"Oh, never mind, mishter. Thash all right," was the reply; "I know
she'sh home all right--I shee a light upshtairs."
A pompous little man with gold-rimmed spectacles and a thoughtful brow
boarded a New York elevated train and took the only unoccupied seat. The
man next him had evidently been drinking. For a while the little man
contented himself with merely sniffing contemptuously at his neighbor,
but finally he summoned the guard.
"Conductor," he demanded indignantly, "do you permit drunken people to
ride upon this train?"
"No, sir," replied the guard in a confidential whisper. "But don't say a
word and stay where you are, sir. If ye hadn't told me I'd never have
A noisy bunch tacked out of their club late one night, and up the
street. They stopped in front of an imposing residence. After
considerable discussion one of them advanced and pounded on the door. A
woman stuck her head out of a second-story window and demanded, none too
sweetly: "What do you want?"
"Ish thish the residence of Mr. Smith?" inquired the man on the steps,
with an elaborate bow.
"It is. What do you want?"
"Ish it possible I have the honor of speakin' to Misshus Smith?"
"Yes. What do you want?"
"Dear Misshus Smith! Good Misshus Smith! Will you--hic--come down an'
pick out Mr. Smith? The resh of us want to go home."
That clever and brilliant genius, McDougall, who represented California
in the United States Senate, was like many others of his class somewhat
addicted to fiery stimulants, and unable to battle long with them
without showing the effect of the struggle. Even in his most exhausted
condition he was, however, brilliant at repartee; but one night, at a
supper of journalists given to the late George D. Prentice, a genius of
the same mold and the same unfortunate habit, he found a foeman worthy
of his steel in General John Cochrane. McDougall had taken offense at
some anti-slavery sentiments which had been uttered--it was in war
times--and late in the evening got on his legs for the tenth time to
make a reply. The spirit did not move him to utterance, however; on the
contrary, it quite deprived him of the power of speech; and after an
ineffectual attempt at speech he suddenly concluded:
"Those are my sentiments, sir, and my name's McDougall."
"I beg the gentleman's pardon," said General Cochrane, springing to his
feet; "but what was that last remark?"
McDougall pronounced it again; "my name's McDougall."
"There must be some error," said Cochrane, gravely. "I have known Mr.
McDougall many years, and there never was a time when as late as twelve
o'clock at night he knew what his name was."
On a pleasant Sunday afternoon an old German and his youngest son were
seated in the village inn. The father had partaken liberally of the
home-brewed beer, and was warning his son against the evils of
intemperance. "Never drink too much, my son. A gentleman stops when he
has enough. To be drunk is a disgrace."
"Yes, Father, but how can I tell when I have enough or am drunk?"
The old man pointed with his finger. "Do you see those two men sitting
in the corner? If you see four men there, you would be drunk."
The boy looked long and earnestly. "Yes, Father, but--but--there is only
one man in that corner."--_W. Karl Hilbrich_.
William R. Hearst, who never touches liquor, had several men in
important positions on his newspapers who were not strangers to
intoxicants. Mr. Hearst has a habit of appearing at his office at
unexpected times and summoning his chiefs of departments for
instructions. One afternoon he sent for Mr. Blank.
"He hasn't come down yet, sir," reported the office boy.
"Please tell Mr. Dash I want to see him."
"He hasn't come down yet either."
"Well, find Mr. Star or Mr. Sun or Mr. Moon--anybody; I want to see one
of them at once."
"Ain't none of 'em here yet, sir. You see there was a celebration last
Mr. Hearst sank back in his chair and remarked in his quiet way:
"For a man who don't drink I think I suffer more from the effects of it
than anybody in the world."
"What is a drunken man like, Fool?"
"Like a drowned man, a fool and a madman: one draught above heat makes
him a fool; the second mads him; and a third drowns him."--_Shakespeare_.
"Ah," she sighed "for many years I've suffered from dyspepsia."
"And don't you take anything for it?" her friend asked. "You look
"Oh," she replied, "I haven't indigestion: my husband has."
An American and a Scotsman were walking one day near the foot of one of
the Scotch mountains. The Scotsman, wishing to impress the visitor,
produced a famous echo to be heard in that place. When the echo returned
clearly after nearly four minutes, the proud Scotsman, turning to the
"There, mon, ye canna show anything like that in your country."
"Oh, I don't know," said the American, "I guess we can better that. Why
in my camp in the Rockies, when I go to bed I just lean out of my
window and call out, 'Time to get up: wake up!' and eight hours
afterward the echo comes back and wakes me."
An economist is usually a man who can save money by cutting down some
other person's expenses.
Economy is going without something you do want in case you should, some
day, want something which you probably won't want.--_Anthony Hope_.
Economy is a way of spending money without getting any fun out of it.
Ther's lots o' difference between thrift an' tryin' t' revive a last
year's straw hat.--_Abe Martin_.
Economy is a great revenue.--_Cicero_.
_See also_ Domestic finance; Saving; Thrift.
Recipe for an editor:
Take a personal hatred of authors,
Mix this with a fiendish delight
In refusing all efforts of genius
And maiming all poets on sight.
The city editor of a great New York daily was known in the newspaper
world as a martinet and severe disciplinarian. Some of his caustic and
biting criticisms are classics. Once, however, the tables were turned
upon him in a way that left him speechless for days.
A reporter on the paper wrote an article that the city editor did not
approve of. The morning of publication this reporter drifted into the
office and encountered his chief, who was in a white heat of anger.
Carefully suppressing the explosion, however, the boss started in with
ominous and icy words:
"Mr. Blank, I am not going to criticize you for what you have written.
On the other hand, I am profoundly sorry for you. I have watched your
work recently, and it is my opinion, reached after calm and
dispassionate observation, that you are mentally unbalanced. You are
insane. Your mind is a wreck. Your friends should take you in hand. The
very kindest suggestion I can make is that you visit an alienist and
place yourself under treatment. So far you have shown no sign of
violence, but what the future holds for you no one can tell. I say this
in all kindness and frankness. You are discharged."
The reporter walked out of the office and wandered up to Bellevue
Hospital. He visited the insane pavilion, and told the resident surgeon
that there was a suspicion that he was not all right mentally and asked
to be examined. The doctor put him through the regular routine and then
"Right as a top."
"Sure?" asked the reporter. "Will you give me a certificate to that
effect?" The doctor said he would and did. Clutching the certificate
tightly in his hand the reporter entered the office an hour later,
walked up to the city editor, handed it to him silently, and then
"Now you go get one."
Along in the sixties Pat Casey pushed a wheelbarrow across the plains
from St. Joseph, Mo., to Georgetown, Colo., and shortly after that he
"struck it rich"; in fact, he was credited with having more wealth than
any one else in Colorado. A man of great shrewdness and ability, he was
exceedingly sensitive over his inability to read or write. One day an
old-timer met him with:
"How are you getting along, Pat?"
"Go 'way from me now," said Pat genially, "me head's bustin' wid
business. It takes two lid-pincils a day to do me wurruk."
A catalog of farming implements sent out by the manufacturer finally
found its way to a distant mountain village where it was evidently
welcomed with interest. The firm received a carefully written, if
somewhat clumsily expressed letter from a southern "cracker" asking
further particulars about one of the listed articles.
To this, in the usual course of business, was sent a type-written
answer. Almost by return mail came a reply:
"You fellows need not think you are so all-fired smart, and you need not
print your letters to me. I can read writing."
An American motorist went to Germany in his car to the army maneuvers.
He was especially impressed with the German motor ambulances. As the
tourist watched the maneuvers from a seat under a tree, the axle of one
of the motor ambulances broke. Instantly the man leaped out, ran into
the village, returned in a jiffy with a new axle, fixed it in place with
wonderful skill, and teuffed-teuffed off again almost as good as new.
"There's efficiency for you," said the American admirably. "There's
German efficiency for you. No matter what breaks, there's always a stock
at hand from which to supply the needed part."
And praising the remarkable instance of German efficiency he had just
witnessed, the tourist returned to the village and ordered up his car.
But he couldn't use it. The axle was missing.
A curious little man sat next an elderly, prosperous looking man in a
"How many people work in your office?" he asked.
"Oh," responded the elderly man, getting up and throwing away his cigar,
"I should say, at a rough guess, about two-thirds of them."
In the Chicago schools a boy refused to sew, thinking it below the
dignity of a man of ten years.
"Why," said the teacher, "George Washington did his own sewing in the
wars, and do you think you are better than George Washington?"
"I don't know," replied the boy seriously. "Only time can tell that."
John D. Rockefeller tells this story on himself:
"Golfing one bright winter day I had for caddie a boy who didn't know
"An unfortunate stroke landed me in clump of high grass.
"'My, my,' I said, 'what am I to do now?'
"'See that there tree?' said the boy, pointing to a tall tree a mile
away. 'Well, drive straight for that.'
"I lofted vigorously, and, fortunately, my ball soared up into the air;
it landed, and it rolled right on to the putting green.
"'How's that, my boy?' I cried.
"The caddie stared at me with envious eyes.
"'Gee, boss,' he said, 'if I had your strength and you had my brains
what a pair we'd make!'"
The late Marshall Field had a very small office-boy who came to the
great merchant one day with a request for an increase in wages.
"Huh!" said Mr. Field, looking at him as if through a magnifying-glass.
"Want a raise, do you? How much are you getting?"
"Three dollars a week," chirped the little chap.
"Three dollars a week!" exclaimed his employer. "Why, when I was your
age I only got two dollars."
"Oh, well, that's different," piped the youngster. "I guess you weren't
worth any more."
Here's to the man who is wisest and best,
Here's to the man who with judgment is blest.
Here's to the man who's as smart as can be--
I mean the man who agrees with me.
In St. Louis there is one ward that is full of breweries and Germans. In
a recent election a local option question was up.
After the election some Germans were counting the votes. One German was
calling off and another taking down the option votes. The first German,
running rapidly through the ballots, said: "Vet, vet, vet, vet,..."
Suddenly he stopped. "_Mein Gott_!" he cried: "_Dry_!"
Then he went on--"Vet, vet, vet, vet,..."
Presently he stopped again and mopped his brow. "_Himmel_!" he said.
"Der son of a gun repeated!"
WILLIS--"What's the election today for? Anybody happen to know?"
GILLIS--"It is to determine whether we shall have a convention to
nominate delegates who will be voted on as to whether they will attend a
caucus which will decide whether we shall have a primary to determine
whether the people want to vote on this same question again next
One year, when the youngsters of a certain Illinois village met for the
purpose of electing a captain of their baseball team for the coming
season, it appeared that there were an excessive number of candidates
for the post, with more than the usual wrangling.
Youngster after youngster presented his qualifications for the post; and
the matter was still undecided when the son of the owner of the
ball-field stood up. He was a small, snub-nosed lad, with a plentiful
supply of freckles, but he glanced about him with a dignified air of
controlling the situation.
"I'm going to be captain this year," he announced convincingly, "or else
Father's old bull is going to be turned into the field."
He was elected unanimously.--_Fenimore Martin_.
I consider biennial elections as a security that the sober second
thought of the people shall be law.--_Fisher Ames_.
In school a boy was asked this question in physics: "What is the
difference between lightning and electricity?"
And he answered: "Well, you don't have to pay for lightning."
A young gentleman was spending the week-end at little Willie's cottage
at Atlantic City, and on Sunday evening after dinner, there being a
scarcity of chairs on the crowded piazza, the young gentleman took
Willie on his lap.
Then, during a pause in the conversation, little Willie looked up at the
young gentleman and piped:
"Am I as heavy as sister Mabel?"
The late Charles Coghlan was a man of great wit and resource. When he
was living in London, his wife started for an out-of-town visit. For
some reason she found it necessary to return home, and on her way
thither she saw her husband step out of a cab and hand a lady from it.
Mrs. Coghlan confronted the pair. The actor was equal to the situation.
"My dear," he said to his wife, "allow me to present Miss Blank. Mrs.
Coghlan, Miss Blank."
The two bowed coldly while Coghlan quickly added:
"I know you ladies have ever so many things you want to say to each
other, so I will ask to be excused."
He lifted his hat, stepped into the cab, and was whirled away.
The evening callers were chatting gaily with the Kinterbys when a patter
of little feet was heard from the head of the stairs. Mrs. Kinterby
raised her hand, warning the others to silence.
"Hush!" she said, softly. "The children are going to deliver their
'good-night' message. It always gives me a feeling of reverence to hear
them--they are so much nearer the Creator than we are, and they speak
the love that is in their little hearts never so fully as when the dark
has come. Listen!"
There was a moment of tense silence. Then--"Mama," came the message in a
shrill whisper, "Willy found a bedbug!"
"I was in an awkward predicament yesterday morning," said a husband to
"How was that?"
"Why, I came home late, and my wife heard me and said, 'John, what time
is it?' and I said, 'Only twelve, my dear,' and just then that cuckoo
clock of ours sang out three times."
"What did you do?"
"Why, I just had to stand there and cuckoo nine times more."
"Your husband will be all right now," said an English doctor to a woman
whose husband was dangerously ill.
"What do you mean?" demanded the wife. "You told me 'e couldn't live a
"Well, I'm going to cure him, after all," said the doctor. "Surely you
The woman wrinkled her brows.
"Puts me in a bit of an 'ole," she said. "I've bin an' sold all 'is
clothes to pay for 'is funeral."
EMPLOYERS AND EMPLOYEES
"You want more money? Why, my boy, I worked three years for $11 a month
right in this establishment, and now I'm owner of it."
"Well, you see what happened to your boss. No man who treats his help
that way can hang on to his business."
EARNEST YOUNG MAN--"Have you any advice to a struggling young employee?"
FRANK OLD GENTLEMAN--"Yes. Don't work."
EARNEST YOUNG MAN--"Don't work?"
FRANK OLD GENTLEMAN--"No. Become an employer."
General Benjamin F. Butler built a house in Washington on the same plans
as his home in Lowell, Mass., and his studies were furnished in exactly
the same way. He and his secretary, M. W. Clancy, afterward City Clerk
of Washington for many years, were constantly traveling between the two
One day a senator called upon General Butler in Lowell and the next day
in Washington to find him and his secretary engaged upon the same work
that had occupied them in Massachusetts.
"Heavens, Clancy, don't you ever stop?"
"No," interposed General Butler,
"'Satan finds some michief still
For idle hands to do.'"
Clancy arose and bowed, saying:
"General, I never was sure until now what my employer was. I had heard
the rumor, but I always discredited it."
W.J. ("Fingy") Conners, the New York politician, who is not precisely a
Chesterfield, secured his first great freight-handling contract when he
was a roustabout on the Buffalo docks. When the job was about to begin
he called a thousand burly "dock-wallopers" to order, as narrated by one
of his business friends:
"Now," roared Conners, "yez are to worruk for me, and I want ivery man
here to understand what's what. I kin lick anny man in the gang."
Nine hundred and ninety-nine swallowed the insult, but one huge,
double-fisted warrior moved uneasily and stepping from the line he said
"You can't lick me, Jim Conners."
"I can't, can't I?" bellowed "Fingy."
"No, you can't" was the determined response.
"Oh, well, thin, go to the office and git your money," said "Fingy."
"I'll have no man in me gang that I can't lick."
Outside his own cleverness there is nothing that so delights Mr. Wiggins
as a game of baseball, and when he gets a chance to exploit the two,
both at the same time, he may be said to be the happiest man in the
world. Hence it was that the other day, when little red headed Willie
Mulligan, his office boy, came sniffing into his presence to ask for the
afternoon off that he might attend his grandfather's funeral, Wiggins
deemed it a masterly stroke to answer:
"Why, certainly, Willie. What's more, my boy, if you'll wait for me I'll
go with you."
"All right, sir," sniffed Willie as he returned to his desk and waited
And, lo and behold, poor little Willie had told the truth, and when he
and Wiggins started out together the latter not only lost one of the
best games of the season, but had to attend the obsequies of an old lady
in whom he had no interest whatever as well.
CHIEF CLERK (to office boy)--"Why on earth don't you laugh when the boss
tells a joke?"
OFFICE BOY--"I don't have to; I quit on Saturday."--_Satire_.
James J. Hill, the Railway King, told the following amusing incident
that happened on one of his roads:
"One of our division superintendents had received numerous complaints
that freight trains were in the habit of stopping on a grade crossing in
a certain small town, thereby blocking travel for long periods. He
issued orders, but still the complaints came in. Finally he decided to
"A short man in size and very excitable, he went down to the crossing,
and, sure enough, there stood, in defiance of his orders, a long freight
train, anchored squarely across it. A brakeman who didn't know him by
sight sat complacently on the top of the car.
"'Move that train on!' sputtered the little 'super.' 'Get it off the
crossing so people can pass. Move on, I say!'
"The brakeman surveyed the tempestuous little man from head to foot.
'You go to the deuce, you little shrimp,' he replied. 'You're small
enough to crawl under.'"
An old man who had led a sinful life was dying, and his wife sent for a
near-by preacher to pray with him.
The preacher spent some time praying and talking, and finally the old
man said: "What do you want me to do, Parson?"
"Renounce the Devil, renounce the Devil," replied the preacher.
"Well, but, Parson," protested the dying man, "I ain't in position to
make any enemies."
It is better to decide a difference between enemies than friends, for
one of our friends will certainly become an enemy and one of our enemies
The world is large when its weary leagues
two loving hearts divide;
But the world is small when your enemy is
loose on the other side.
--_John Boyle O'Reilly_.
_See_ Great Britain.
A popular hotel in Rome has a sign in the elevator reading: "Please do
not touch the Lift at your own risk."
The class at Heidelberg was studying English conjugations, and each verb
considered was used in a model sentence, so that the students would gain
the benefit of pronouncing the connected series of words, as well as
learning the varying forms of the verb. This morning it was the verb "to
have" in the sentence, "I have a gold mine."
Herr Schmitz was called to his feet by Professor Wulff.
"Conjugate 'do haff' in der sentence, 'I haff a golt mine," the
"I haff a golt mine, du hast a golt dein, he hass a golt hiss. Ve, you
or dey haff a golt ours, yours or deirs, as de case may be."
Language is the expression of ideas, and if the people of one country
cannot preserve an identity of ideas, they cannot retain an identity of
He who laughs last is an Englishman.--_Princeton Tiger_.
Nat Goodwill was at the club with an English friend and became the
center of an appreciative group. A cigar man offered the comedian a
cigar, saying that it was a new production.
"With each cigar, you understand," the promoter said, "I will give a
coupon, and when you have smoked three thousand of them you may bring
the coupons to me and exchange them for a grand piano."
Nat sniffed the cigar, pinched it gently, and then replied: "If I smoked
three thousand of these cigars I think I would need a harp instead of a
There was a burst of laughter in which the Englishman did not join, but
presently he exploded with merriment. "I see the point" he exclaimed.
"Being an actor, you have to travel around the country a great deal and
a harp would be so much more convenient to carry."
Theodore Watts, says Charles Rowley in his book "Fifty Years of Work
Without Wages," tells a good story against himself. A nature enthusiast,
he was climbing Snowdon, and overtook an old gypsy woman. He began to
dilate upon the sublimity of the scenery, in somewhat gushing phrases.
The woman paid no attention to him. Provoked by her irresponsiveness, he
said, "You don't seem to care for this magnificent scenery?" She took
the pipe from her mouth and delivered this settler: "I enjies it; I
HIS FATHER--"Well, my son?"
LITTLE CLARENCE--"I took a walk through the cemetery to-day and read the
inscriptions on the tombstones."
HIS FATHER--"And what were your thoughts after you had done so?"
LITTLE CLARENCE--"Why, pa, I wondered where all the wicked people were
The widower had just taken his fourth wife and was showing her around
the village. Among the places visited was the churchyard, and the bride
paused before a very elaborate tombstone that had been erected by the
bridegroom. Being a little nearsighted she asked him to read the
inscription, and in reverent tones he read:
"Here lies Susan, beloved wife of John Smith; also Jane, beloved wife of
John Smith; also Mary, beloved wife of John Smith--"
He paused abruptly, and the bride, leaning forward to see the bottom
line, read, to her horror:
"Be Ye Also Ready."
A man wished to have something original on his wife's headstone and hit
upon, "Lord, she was Thine." He had his own ideas of the size of the
letters and the space between words, and gave instructions to the
stonemason. The latter carried them out all right, except that he could
not get in the "E" in Thine.
In a cemetery at Middlebury, Vt., is a stone, erected by a widow to her
loving husband, bearing this inscription: "Rest in peace--until we meet
An epitaph in an old Moravian cemetery reads thus:
Remember, friend, as you pass by,
As you are now, so once was I;
As I am now thus you must be,
So be prepared to follow me.
There had been written underneath in pencil, presumably by some wag:
To follow you I'm not content
Till I find out which way you went.
I expected it, but I didn't expect it quite so soon.--_Life_.
After Life's scarlet fever
I sleep well.
Here lies the body of Sarah Sexton,
Who never did aught to vex one.
(Not like the woman under the next stone.)
As a general thing, the writer of epitaphs is a monumental liar.--_John
Wife of Timothy Brown,
aged 80 years.
She lived with her husband fifty years, and died
in the confident hope of a better life.
Here lies the body of Enoch Holden, who died suddenly and unexpectedly
by being kicked to death by a cow. Well done, good and faithful servant!
A bereaved husband feeling his loss very keenly found it desirable to
divert his mind by traveling abroad. Before his departure, however, he
left orders for a tombstone with the inscription:
"The light of my life has gone out."
Travel brought unexpected and speedy relief, and before the time for his
return he had taken another wife. It was then that he remembered the
inscription, and thinking it would not be pleasing to his new wife, he
wrote to the stone-cutter, asking that he exercise his ingenuity in
adapting it to the new conditions. After his return he took his new wife
to see the tombstone and found that the inscription had been made to
"The light of my life has gone out,
But I have struck another match."
Here lies Bernard Lightfoot,
Who was accidentally killed in the forty-fifth year
of his age.
This monument was erected by his grateful family.
I thought it mushroom when I found
It in the woods, forsaken;
But since I sleep beneath this mound,
I must have been mistaken.
On the tombstone of a Mr. Box appears this inscription:
Here lies one Box within another.
The one of wood was very good,
We cannot say so much for t'other.
Nobles and heralds by your leave,
Here lies what once was Matthew Prior;
The son of Adam and of Eve;
Can Bourbon or Nassau claim higher?
Kind reader! take your choice to cry or laugh;
Here Harold lies-but where's his Epitaph?
If such you seek, try Westminster, and view
Ten thousand, just as fit for him as you.
I conceive disgust at these impertinent and misbecoming familiarities
inscribed upon your ordinary tombstone.--_Charles Lamb_.
John Fiske, the historian, was once interrupted by his wife, who
complained that their son had been very disrespectful to some neighbors.
Mr. Fiske called the youngster into his study.
"My boy, is it true that you called Mrs. Jones a fool?"
The boy hung his head. "Yes, father." "And did you call Mr. Jones a
Mr. Fiske frowned and pondered for a minute. Then he said:
"Well, my son, that is just about the distinction I should make."
"See that man over there. He is a bombastic mutt, a windjammer
nonentity, a false alarm, and an encumberer of the earth!"
"Would you mind writing all that down for me?"
"Why in the world--"
"He's my husband, and I should like to use it on him some time."
As one of the White Star steamships came up New York harbor the other
day, a grimy coal barge floated immediately in front of her. "Clear out
of the way with that old mud scow!" shouted an officer on the bridge.
A round, sun-browned face appeared over the cabin hatchway. "Are ye the
captain of that vessel?"
"No," answered the officer.
"Then spake to yer equals. I'm the captain o' this!" came from the
Said an envious, erudite ermine:
"There's one thing I cannot determine:
When a man wears my coat,
He's a person of note,
While I'm but a species of vermin!"
There was once a chap who went skating too early and all of a sudden
that afternoon loud cries for help began to echo among the bleak hills
that surrounded the skating pond.
A farmer, cobbling his boots before his kitchen fire heard the shouts
and yells, and ran to the pond at break-neck speed. He saw a large
black hole in the ice, and a pale young fellow stood with chattering
teeth shoulder-deep in the cold water.
The farmer laid a board on the thin ice and crawled out on it to the
edge of the hole. Then, extending his hand, he said:
"Here, come over this way, and I'll lift you out."
"No, I can't swim," was the impatient reply. "Throw a rope to me. Hurry
up. It's cold in here."
"I ain't got no rope," said the farmer; and he added angrily. "What if
you can't swim you can wade, I guess! The water's only up to your
"Up to my shoulders?" said the young fellow. "It's eight feet deep if
it's an inch. I'm standing on the blasted fat man who broke the ice!"
My ethical state,
Were I wealthy and great,
Is a subject you wish I'd reply on.
Now who can foresee
What his morals _might_ be?
What would yours be if you were a lion?
--_Martial; tr. by Paul Nixon_.
A Boston girl the other day said to a southern friend who was visiting
her, as two men rose in a car to give them seats: "Oh, I wish they would
not do it."
"Why not? I think it is very nice of them," said her friend, settling
"Yes, but one can't thank them, you know, and it is so awkward."
"Can't thank them! Why not?"
"Why, you would not speak to a strange man, would you?" said the Boston
maiden, to the astonishment of her southern friend.
A little girl on the train to Pittsburgh was chewing gum. Not only that,
but she insisted on pulling it out in long strings and letting it fall
back into her mouth again.
"Mabel!" said her mother in a horrified whisper. "Mabel, don't do that.
Chew your gum like a little lady."
LITTLE BROTHER--"What's etiquet?"
LITTLE BIGGER BROTHER--"It's saying 'No, thank you,' when you want to
A Lady there was of Antigua,
Who said to her spouse, "What a pig you are!"
He answered, "My queen,
Is it manners you mean,
Or do you refer to my figure?"
--_Gilbert K. Chesterton_.
They were at dinner and the dainties were on the table.
"Will you take tart or pudding?" asked Papa of Tommy.
"Tart," said Tommy promptly.
His father sighed as he recalled the many lessons on manners he had
given the boy.
"Tart, what?" he queried kindly.
But Tommy's eyes were glued on the pastry.
"Tart, what?" asked the father again, sharply this time.
"Tart, first," answered Tommy triumphantly.
TOMMY'S AUNT--"Won't you have another piece of cake, Tommy?"
TOMMY (on a visit)--"No, I thank you."
TOMMY'S AUNT--"You seem to be suffering from loss of appetite."
TOMMY--"That ain't loss of appetite. What I'm sufferin' from is
There was a young man so benighted,
He never knew when he was slighted;
He would go to a party,
And eat just as hearty,
As if he'd been really invited.
OFFICER (as Private Atkins worms his way toward the enemy)--"You fool!
Come back at once!"
TOMMY--"No bally fear, sir! There's a hornet in the trench."--_Punch_.
"You can tell an Englishman nowadays by the way he holds his head up."
"No, Zeppelin neck."
LITTLE GIRL (who has been sitting very still with a seraphic
expression)--"I wish I was an angel, mother!"
MOTHER--"What makes you say that, darling?"
LITTLE GIRL--"Because then I could drop bombs on the Germans!"--_Punch_.
From a sailor's letter to his wife:
"Dear Jane,--I am sending you a postal order for 10s., which I
hope you may get--but you may not--as this letter has to pass
Two country darkies listened, awe-struck, while some planters discussed
the tremendous range of the new German guns.
"Dar now," exclaimed one negro, when his master had finished expatiating
on the hideous havoc wrought by a forty-two-centimeter shell, "jes' lak
I bin tellin' yo' niggehs all de time! Don' le's have no guns lak dem
roun' heah! Why, us niggehs could start runnin' erway, run all day, git
almos' home free, an' den git kilt jus' befo' suppeh!"
"Dat's de trufe," assented his companion, "an' lemme tell yo' sumpin'
else, Bo. All dem guns needs is jus' yo' _ad_-dress, dat's all; jes'
giv' em de _ad_-dress an' they'll git yo'."
_See also_ War.
From a crowd of rah-rah college boys celebrating a crew victory, a
policeman had managed to extract two prisoners.
"What is the charge against these young men?" asked the magistrate
before whom they were arraigned.
"Disturbin' the peace, yer honor," said the policeman. "They were givin'
their college yells in the street an' makin' trouble generally."
"What is your name?" the judge asked one of the prisoners.
"Ro-ro-robert Ro-ro-rollins," stuttered the youth.
"I asked for your name, sir, not the evidence."
Maud Muller, on a summer night,
Turned down the only parlor light.
The judge, beside her, whispered things
Of wedding bells and diamond rings.
He spoke his love in burning phrase,
And acted foolish forty ways.
When he had gone Maud gave a laugh
And then turned off the dictagraph.
One day a hostess asked a well known Parisian judge: "Your Honor, which
do you prefer, Burgundy or Bordeaux?"
"Madame, that is a case in which I have so much pleasure in taking the
evidence that I always postpone judgment," was the wily jurist's reply.
_See also_ Courts; Witnesses.
An instructor in a church school where much attention was paid to sacred
history, dwelt particularly on the phrase "And Enoch was not, for God
took him." So many times was this repeated in connection with the death
of Enoch that he thought even the dullest pupil would answer correctly
when asked in examination: State in the exact language of the Bible what
is said of Enoch's death.
But this was the answer he got:
"Enoch was not what God took him for."
A member of the faculty of the University of Wisconsin tells of some
amusing replies made by a pupil undergoing an examination in English.
The candidate had been instructed to write out examples of the
indicative, the subjunctive, the potential and the exclamatory moods.
His efforts resulted as follows:
"I am endeavoring to pass an English examination. If I answer twenty
questions I shall pass. If I answer twelve questions I may pass. God
The following selection of mistakes in examinations may convince almost
any one that there are some peaks of ignorance which he has yet to
Magna Charta said that the King had no right to bring soldiers into a
lady's house and tell her to mind them.
Panama is a town of Colombo, where they are trying to make an isthmus.
The three highest mountains in Scotland are Ben Nevis, Ben Lomond and
Wolsey saved his life by dying on the way from York to London.
Bigamy is when a man tries to serve two masters.
"Those melodious bursts that fill the spacious days of great Elizabeth"
refers to the songs that Queen Elizabeth used to write in her spare
Tennyson wrote a poem called Grave's Energy.
The Rump Parliament consisted entirely of Cromwell's stalactites.
The plural of spouse is spice.
Queen Elizabeth rode a white horse from Kenilworth through Coventry with
nothing on, and Raleigh offered her his cloak.
The law allowing only one wife is called monotony.
When England was placed under an Interdict the Pope stopped all births,
marriages and deaths for a year.
The Pyramids are a range of mountains between France and Spain.
The gods of the Indians are chiefly Mahommed and Buddha, and in their
spare time they do lots of carving.
Every one needs a holiday from one year's end to another.
The Seven Great Powers of Europe are gravity, electricity, steam, gas,
fly-wheels, and motors, and Mr. Lloyd George.
The hydra was married to Henry VIII. When he cut off her head another
Liberty of conscience means doing wrong and not worrying about it
The Habeas Corpus act was that no one need stay in prison longer than he
Becket put on a camel-air shirt and his life at once became dangerous.
The two races living in the north of Europe are Esquimaux and
Skeleton is what you have left when you take a man's insides out and his
Ellipsis is when you forget to kiss.
A bishop without a diocese is called a suffragette.
Artificial perspiration is the way to make a person alive when they are
only just dead.
A night watchman is a man employed to sleep in the open air.
The tides are caused by the sun drawing the water out and the moon
drawing it in again.
The liver is an infernal organ of the body.
A circle is a line which meets its other end without ending.
Triangles are of three kinds, the equilateral or three-sided, the
quadrilateral or four-sided, and the multilateral or polyglot.
General Braddock was killed in the Revolutionary War. He had three
horses shot under him and a fourth went through his clothes.
A buttress is the wife of a butler.
The young Pretender was so called because it was pretended that he was
born in a frying-pan.
A verb is a word which is used in order to make an exertion.
A Passive Verb is when the subject is the sufferer, e.g., I am loved.
Lord Raleigh was the first man to see the invisible Armada.
A schoolmaster is called a pedigree.
The South of the U. S. A. grows oranges, figs, melons and a great
quantity of preserved fruits, especially tinned meats.
The wife of a Prime Minister is called a Primate.
The Greeks were too thickly populated to be comfortable.
The American war was started because the people would persist in sending
their parcels thru the post without stamps.
Prince William was drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine; he never laughed
The heart is located on the west side of the body.
Richard II is said to have been murdered by some historians; his real
fate is uncertain.
Subjects have a right to partition the king.
A kaiser is a stream of hot water springin' up an' distubin' the earth.
He had nothing left to live for but to die.
Franklin's education was got by himself. He worked himself up to be a
great literal man. He was also able to invent electricity. Franklin's
father was a tallow chandelier.
Monastery is the place for monsters.
Sir Walter Raleigh was put out once when his servant found him with fire
in his head. And one day after there had been a lot of rain, he threw
his cloak in a puddle and the queen stepped dryly over.
The Greeks planted colonists for their food supplies.
Nicotine is so deadly a poison that a drop on the end of a dog's tail
will kill a man.
A mosquito is the child of black and white parents.
An author is a queer animal because his tales (tails) come from his
Wind is air in a hurry.
The people that come to America found Indians, but no people.
Shadows are rays of darkness.
Lincoln wrote the address while riding from Washington to Gettysburg on
Queen Elizabeth was tall and thin, but she was a stout protestant.
An equinox is a man who lives near the north pole.
An abstract noun is something we can think of but cannot feel--as a red
The population of New England is too dry for farming.
Anatomy is the human body, which consists of three parts, the head, the
chist, and the stummick. The head contains the eyes and brains, if any.
The chist contains the lungs and a piece of the liver. The stummick is
devoted to the bowels, of which there are five, a, e, i, o, u, and
sometimes w and y.
Filigree means a list of your descendants.
"The Complete Angler" was written by Euclid because he knew all about
The imperfect tense in French is used to express a future action in past
time which does not take place at all.
Arabia has many syphoons and very bad ones; It gets into your hair even
with your mouth shut.
The modern name for Gaul is vinegar.
Some of the West India Islands are subject to torpedoes.
The Crusaders were a wild and savage people until Peter the Hermit
preached to them.
On the low coast plains of Mexico yellow fever is very popular.
Louis XVI was gelatined during the French Revolution.
Gender shows whether a man is masculine, feminine, or neuter.
An angle is a triangle with only two sides.
Geometry teaches us how to bisex angels.
Gravitation is that which if there were none we should all fly away.
A vacuum is a large empty space where the Pope lives.
A deacon is the lowest kind of Christian.
Vapor is dried water.
The Salic law is that you must take everything with a grain of salt.
The Zodiac is the Zoo of the sky, where lions, goats and other animals
go after they are dead.
The Pharisees were people who like to show off their goodness by praying
An abstract noun is something you can't see when you are looking at it.
The children had been reminded that they must not appear at school the
following week without their application blanks properly filled out as
to names of parents, addresses, dates and place of birth. On Monday
morning Katie Barnes arrived, the tears streaming down her cheeks. "What
is the trouble?" Miss Green inquired, seeking to comfort her. "Oh,"
sobbed the little girl, "I forgot my excuse for being born."
O. Henry always retained the whimsical sense of humor which made him
quickly famous. Shortly before his death he called on the cashier of a
New York publishing house, after vainly writing several times for a
check which had been promised as an advance on his royalties.