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THE WESTERN WEEKLY il '
"Takin' a Poll"
By MOSE LOUTHER I
Thcy's plenty things about this election business that I'm plumb
ignorant of, but 1 has been through one or two campaigns, occupying
a seat in the observers' stand. Maybe it's one of the funniest experi
ences that I ever has, that's thrust on me this campaign, and mc sidc
steppin' all the whilcj and never wantin' to get even near the startin'
Me and the fellers on the newspapers has always been pretty good
friends, and it's a surprise to mc when I gets a rebuff one Saturday
night that makes a noise like this :
' Where' r you goin'?" says I.
"Goin' to take a poll," says he.
And it was the game all down the line. Every one of them was
goin' to take a poll.
Bein' lonesome and much beset -with solitude, that way, I says to
?-.-. myself, says I, "Mose, s'pose I go and take a poll my own self."
i'- , The first man I meets up with is Art Long, the man that's next to
I George Gould in the Western Union.
1 "Arthur," says I, "e'verybody in town that deserves my acquaint
ance is takin' a poll; can you give me one?"
"I can't" says he, "because they're not down yet, but when we get
our cable in and cut our poles down I'll send a cipher message to Col
onel Clowry, and I have no doubt you can have a pole. Tom Black and
Mayor Bransford have been after my poles for a long time, but I'll
1 hold out one for you."
Seein' as Arthur Long is imbued with stupidity to a degree about
what I mean, I goes to Billy Hawk of the Postal.
"Billy," says I, "I'm takin' a poll. Can you help me out?"
"I'm sorry to that extent," says Hawk, "that I can already feel
the tears welling up in my eyes ; but we haven't had any poles north
i " , ,
"Them ain't the kind of polls I mean," says I, gettin' real angry,
like somebody slapped me real hard on the wrist. "It's a poll "
"Oh, sure," says he, "I know what you mean now. Mr. McNicol,
will you please give Mr. Louther a pole?"
"Thanks," says I, knowin' McNicol bein' the manager of the
office and maybe can land the operators how they're goin' to vote.
But instead of that Mac takes me back to where thcys plenty wheels
goin round and plenty jiggers with hands on them like they is on a
clock. , . .
"Now," says Mac, "you understand, of course, that a pole is a
pyro electric crystal, as tourmalin. There arc different designations
for poles ; there are the astral, blue, boreal, chlorous and others. Com
monly, for the purpose of convenience, we call the oppositcs positives
and negatives, or souths and norths. Now, Mr. Louther, which would
you like, a north or a south pole?" t ((
'That explains the cadorance thoroughly to me, says 1, ana l
1 don't thir.k I need to carry any of them off with me, but if I had any
'- chbicdtakecholorous is that a south pole?"
''Yes," he says, "but we can energize it with silenium
"Never mind," says I, "if this is the south pole, I'm for her, and I
hear -the last car comin' and I'm goin' south."
Pretty soon an old friend of mine that is so awful interested in
science and stuff and who always eases off about two columns into me
like I was a sponge or a wad of absorbent cotton, hails mc, but 1
takes a strangle hold before he gets a chance to get his auger in. f
"Professor," says I, "I'm takin' a poll, and I'm a little in doubt
"Oh my dear Mr. Louther," says he, effusion oozin out from
r every pore of his skin. "Pole, pole," he says, "let me see says he, de
' liberatin' like, "what family does the pole belong to? Oh, certainly,
certainly," he cries, like 'rah 'rah boy that's win, twenty cents by the
grace of the wart on the dealer's thumb and the laxness of the ternal
vigilance of the eye of the man that runs the game, a pole-why, to
be sure, a pole is apleudonectes, in other words, a glyptochephalus
"My'gradoProfessor," I'm constrained to utter sudden, "here's
the Waterloo car, and I've got to take it or hike. . . . ,
The next collision I'm a victim of is with a most ferocious lookin
foreigner, with whiskers so big that they must have begun to grow
before he was ever thought, of. But I'm game. I'm goin' to get a
polf ; I'm sent on a mission to get this here poll and I'm goin to
"Have a drink?" says I.
"Rent brandvin," says he.
"All right with me."
"T'm takin' a noil," says I "can you help me i"
"Pole? Pole?PNo; him work In woods for dollar and tain cents
day. No! No Pole for gude Norwegian faller.
It's highly discouragin' for to get turned down every place in the
pursuit of knowledge and sentiments and inclinations and stuff, but I
goes after it again. I'm the cat at the mouse hole.
1 beats it back to what's left of the Great White Way at this
hour, and 1 whispers to the man behind that I'd like to have a poll.
All at once up jumps the devil 1 i
"Polcl Pole!" comes a megaphone out of a bunch that's lined up.
"Pole!" he says, and then I see what's makin' the loudness. It's a m
being that I guess his folks done forgot to give any bread and milk to I
when he was a urchin and now he's only half as big as he'd be if he I
carried weight for age. "Why, h 11 if Black Dress had took the pole I
they'd been nothing to it. No cinch like that ever again; 'an me I
ridin' at ninety-eight, too." I
Says I, "I'll stand right here till it happens.'' I
And the next thing 1 lifts my hat to a matron what's wheclin' one H
and is ridin' night guard on two more. H
"Mrs. Swoplowski-Joncs," says 1, "I'm overjoyed to meet you. H
I'm takin' a poll ; can you help me any?" H
''Oh, my dear Mr. Louther ; you know always verc to gome for the H
information. So id is always. 1 am even now interesting in my work H
what used id vas, so of course, id now no longer is. Id is a poll you H
vant? Well, for many years I not have seen one, but vhen I am a H
little girl in the millinery, you know, the poll is the crown of the hat H
id is the Danish name, you know." H
The horizon looks more gloomy. I gets some consolation out of a H
feller that wants to argue all the while when he says that he can prove H
by the dictionary that poll is "some variant contained with bowl." H
But, say, if you want to get the real physician's and surgeon's
soap that lathers, find the Towser that's Shakespeare. H
By this time I'm makin' no bones about it. I'm desperate to '
the point of givin' back the heroine her chc-c-ild. H
"I want a poll," says I to this Kasazen, "and I want it d d quick, i
see?" Oh, Sis, I'm the original Wallace lion when they arouse me that '
"Poll! Polll Certainly, anything to oblige you, my boy. Aha, I
have it and it fits so well, don't you know, don't you really know, it
fits so well I'm an American party man, you understand, of course,
but also a follower of Shakespeare, of Shakespeare, yes, to be sure, of
Shakespeare. Now doesn't this apply, I say, I mean, I repeat, doesn't
this apply : M
"His beard was as wliitc as white as snow, H
'AH flaxen was his poll.' H
"Now, anybody can sec that that's directed precisely at Joseph l
F. Smith. Of course, his whiskers aren't exactly as white as snow, 1
but there's time, and the time is the time of reckoning, the time ol 1
reckoning, my boy, his whiskers will be white as snow if he lives 1
long enough, if he lives long enough." M
"But he's got the poll, he's got the poll, my boy, yes. ( H
"Just occurred to me, just occurcd to mc, one of Shakespeare's M
best; almost 's good as some of my own: M
" 'Have you the catalogue of all the voices we have procured H
'Set down by the poll.' H
"Now, my boy, now my boy, who would ask such a question ex- M
ccpt Sam King or Ben Lloyd or Jody Eldrcdgc or Darmcr? Truly, H
in faith, I tell you, Shakespeare is the greatest They say that Bacon H
"I've heard Ingersoll on the subject," says I, "and I agree with you H
perfectly. All three of them havin' already had their feet sharpened M
and been driven into the ground, we'll call out the mowin' machine H
When I reads the papers next morning I sees that by a poll taken H
at Gygam theatre Bryan is dead nuts to win that is, by one paper. H
Another paper says that it takes a poll of the Gygam and Taft is the H
real coal before it's ever been passed by the stoker. And the way them H
theatres did vote. By Spryl Nobody ever would think they was so H
many people in Salt Lake, and, I guess the people that thinks that way H
is mostly right, cause why, cause they ain't and couldn t be. They M
is more nor a million votes cast, I guess. H
After all this election business is over, I gets hit in the head with
' a cake of ice and says, I, "Mose, le's you and me go and look in H
" that there dictionary our ownselves about this poll business. So we H
does. And here is a couple of the choice pickin's that wc finds : H
"Poll The broad end or butt, of a rammer."
"Poll v. To remove the head of lop off, clip, cut, shear, mow, H
(Continued on Pace 13) M