|Drawing by Clyde J. Newman|
ONCE THERE WAS A BLUFF whose Long Suit was Glittering Generalities.
He hated to Work and it hurt his Eyes to read Law, but on a Clear Day he could be heard a Mile, so he became a Statesman.
Whenever the Foresters had a Picnic they invited him to make the Principal Address, because he was the only Orator who could beat out the Merry-Go-Round.
The Habit of Dignity enveloped him.
Upon his Brow Deliberation sat. He wore a Fireman's moustache and a White Lawn Tie, and he loved to Talk about the Flag.
At a Clam-Bake in 1884 he hurled Defiance at all the Princes and Potentates of Europe, and the Sovereign Voters, caught up by his Matchless Eloquence and Unswerving Courage, elected him to the Legislature.
While he was in the Legislature he discovered that these United States were an Asylum for the Down-Trodden and oppressed of the Whole World, and frequently called Attention to the Fact. When some one asked him if he was cutting up any Easy Money or would it be safe for a Man with a Watch to go to Sleep in the same Room with him, he would take a Drink of Water and begin to plead for Cuba.
Once an Investigating Committee got after him and he was about to be Shown Up for Dallying with Corporations, but he put on a fresh White Tie and made a Speech about our Heroic Dead on a Hundred Battle-Fields, and Most People said it was simply Impossible for such a Thunderous Patriot to be a Crook. So he played the Glittering Generality stronger than ever.
In Due Time he Married a Widow of the Bantam Division. The Reason she married him was that he looked to her to be a Coming Congressman and she wanted to get a Whack at Washington Society. Besides, she lived in a Flat and the Janitor would not permit her to keep a Dog.
About Ten Days after they were Married he came Home at 4 A.M. in a Sea-Going Hack and he was Saturated. Next Morning she had him up on the Carpet and wanted to know How About It.
|Drawing by Clyde J. Newman|
"Madam," he said, "During a Long, and, I trust, a not altogether fruitless Career as a Servant of the Peepul, I have always stood in the Fierce Light of Publicity, and my Record is an Open Book which he who runs may——"
"Nix! Nix!" she said, rapping for order with a Tea-Cup. "Let go of the Flying Rings. Get back to the Green Earth!"
He dilated his Nostrils and said: "From the Rock-Bound Hills of Maine in the North to the Everglades of Florida——"
"Forget the Everglades," she said, rapping again. "That Superheated Atmosphere may have a certain Tonic Effect on the Hydrocephalous Voter, but if you want to adjust yourself with Wifey, you come down to Cases."
So he went out after Breakfast and bought a $22 Hat in order to Square himself.
Moral: Some Women should be given the Right to Vote.
– George Ade, from Fables in Slang, Herbert S. Stone and Company, Chicago & New York, 1899 (Originally printed in the Chicago Record)