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Count that day lost —
Untallied and unscored
\ That boasts not of a gathering around
i The banquet board.
T T XAIDED by human hand, chair,
| step, box or rope ladder, the cor
-1 j poral dismounted from ins trusty
McCellan, just as if he'd gotten
up there all by himself.
Twice he yelled "Whoa," but, as she
didn't even look around either time, he
threw the reins on the ground and wad
dled over toward the traffic cop.
. The traffic cop was directing his
.jjiances toward a gentleman occupying
Jic presented the silver: but he presented it by
the piece and not by the chest.
; the driver's. seat on a motor truck, and
if. the interpretation of those glances had
' '. itver penetrated under the hood
/,:would have killed the engine.
"I understand," said the corporal, tes
/''tiiy'mg to the inefficiency of the street
;. leaning department by an active and pro
,;.'':':fuse : use of his gauntlets, "I understand
. -;\%e: have been giving quite a few public
. "Is-that so? And in this instance who
. Banquets Training for the
v" '; : "The Knights of the Gold Service and
the United Order of Hand Shakers of the
s : 'Great."
"Well, they might give a thousand,
for all of me; that's where I got my train
ing for this job."
"Why. before the commission consid
ers that you are fit to stop a horse or
start a car you have to show your mettle
on the banquet detail."
"I didn't know there was any such de
tail ; I never heard of it."
"Well, there is. nevertheless, and the
test is that if you can attend a dozen of
these affairs, retain your mental balance,
' . .and never be caught asleep in the coat
' Jot* are then honored by the dis
•„*• tinction of being fit to stand on a box,
»gurgle your life away on a tin whistle and
defy the elements."
/- ° "Is it as bad as that?"
"It's worse. * * * I'd rather be
here all day and let you name the weather
than go to another banquet, that is if I
had to listen. Corporal, have you never
been to one of 'em ?"
Need Block System
On Dinner Speakers
"Xevcr, although I came pretty close
to going to the one they gave to Mr.
Lane. I've always had a notion that it
must be a great thing to make a speech.
I've always had a foolish idea that some
TOM'S MOTHER'S VIEW OF IT
Why, didn't you get an announce
ment of Tom's wedding?' 1 exclaimed
Tom's mother, in amasrement. "Well,
that just goes to show how you've got
, to take care of things yourself: I
sent a list of friends to Susie's mother
and asked her to be sure to mail an
nouncements to them —and yours wa£
bne of the first names on it:
"Well, anyway, Tom's married, anfl
' r ' you don't know how relieved I am:
:>s got a lovely wife, which is a
"J hope my other son will oe less
Topular. Why. Tom had, f».o peace
> 'whatever: The telephone rang until
mjr ears ached, and I threatened to
take-it out because it was never used
Between Whistles of the Traffic Cop
day I'd like to be a toastmaster at one of
these big banquets."
"How the professional toastmaster ever
got by the pure food laws will always be
a mystery to me."
"Still, it must be a great art to be able
to introduce a lot of alter dinner speakers
in a manner satisfactory to them."
"It is, if you can keep from laughing
yourself. As a matter of fact, corporal,
any time you find a man who actually sits
at the speaker's table from choice, he
doesn't care what you say about him, pro
vided you say it loud enough." •
"It must be a pretty hard matter to
get people to speak at these dinners."
"Xo, that isn't the trouble. It's getting
them to stop that bothers the average
toastmaster. In my opinion, the railroad
block system applied to after dinner
speaking would reverse the present con
ditions as to the-oratorical supply and de
"Who does the success of a dinner de
pend on—the toastmaster or the orators?"
Toastmaster Most to Do
and Overdoes It
"W ell, that's more or less of a hard ques
tion. Sometimes they have to go 11 in
nings before the crowd can decide which
is the worst. As a general thing, though,
the toastmaster has the most to do, and,
as a regular thing, he overdoes it. It's
been my experience that they select men
to make talks at dinners who have every
other qualification in the world than that
required to make a speech. I remember
one banquet the bankers gave—the prin
cipal speech naturally had to be made
by the principal banker. Xow, I don't
know the gentleman personally, and I
suppose that when it comes to saying
"Xo" to a client, calling a loan or being
dignified during the day he hasn't his
equal, but I wish you could have heard
his speech. I give you my word that if
you had taken the decimal points out of
it there would have been nothing left of
his talk but an exhibition in calisthenics
—not only that, but two courses got cold
and the ice melted while he was getting
Nothing left of his talk but an exhibition in
rid of it. You see, his regular hours are
from 9 to 3, and he saw no reason to make
an exception in this case. Most every
man speaks as he works, only longer.
Corporal, if ever I found myself in the
position of a toastmaster I'd let the speak
ers get up whenever it suited them, but,
believe me, I'd have the "Gentlemen, Be
Seated" concession in my own name, and
"Well, why is it the papers on the morn
ing- following one of these banquets al
ways speak of them as being such a great
"Why shouldn't they? The reporters
have to leave before the speeches."
— A Short Story
by any one except Tom—he was at it
"There was Isabel. She deliberate
ly set out to catch him. Any one
could tell if. She phoned nlm and
Invited him out there and fussed over
him until in sheer desperation he pro
posed to her. Then, of course, the
poor boy had a time breaking- off!
«HK FORCED HIM
"Then Clara deliberately forced him
to propose. I know she did, for you
can't tell me Jhat Tom of his own
accord would have become engaged to
her just a week after he and Isabel
"Tom, poor boy, is so absurdly ten
der hearted. He can't bear for any
frHE SAN FKAXfTSCO CALII SATITSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 1013. "
"That can't be so because these same
. reporters quote extracts from the speeches
you say they never heard."
Tough to De Caught
Doing Hero Act
"But I didn't say they didn't write 'em."
"Oh, well, apparently Mr. Lane was
quite a hero."
"Yes, and he had to go 3,000 miles
away and get*the cutaway coat habit be
fore we ever realized it. It's all right to
be a hero, but it's pretty tough to be
caught at it. Do you ren,ember the night
they opened the new Tivoli?"
"I was detailed that night to help pry
the automobiles apart. Just about 8
o'clock there was an awful hullabulloo
in Eddy street. I don't remember all the
details, but I know I stopped the team.
It was a bakery wagon, and when they
picked me up you couldn't tell whether
I was a chocolate eclair or a LEMON
MERINGUE. Now, why couldn't that
have been some swell turnout with Mary
"What about your wife and children?"
"Oh, I couldn't have married the lady,
but there are circumstances under which
even I would take money; and what did
I get —nothing; the only remark I re
member was made by a young thing
whose limousine I fell in front of—she
said I looked like aft illustrated page of
'Don't' out of a cook book. All of which
goes to prove my theory that if you have
a little luck you're a romantic hero, if
you don't you're an ordinary shock ab
He Never Heard
His Favorite Speaker
"Well, if what you tell me about these
banquets is true I will never believe any
thing I read again."
"And it might be just as well not to
believe all you see. As long as two drum
mers are not together you might think
either of them weren't, so you never can
"Still I can't get away from the feeling
that when the papers say that the speaker
of the evening made a great talk that he
must have made it, and, furthermore, that
he must have written it."
"I see. Well, I suppose you have often
heard about the danger of the third rail?"
"Then I suppose you know that it's
really the electricity that does the dam
age. It might be well for you to bear
this in mind, corporal. It'll make a lot
of things in this life easy figuring."
"Who was the best speaker you ever
"I never heard him. Speakers are very
uncertain; they will promise to make a
one to feel badly, and you know how
girls can act when they want a man's
"So It just served her good and
right when he met Sally and liked
her better than Clara. Of course,
Clara made a fuss, and I almost won
dered if she'd cause Tom trouble, but
she knew in her that she'd no
right making him propose to her, so
she retired as gracefully as she could.
Hut J felt rather ( sorry for her, for
she seemed really fond of my boy
Sally and Tom seemed suited to
each other, but I didn't Ilk* her very
much. She was the languid sort, and
if I had to have $ daughter ln <_w I
The railroad block system applied to after dinnner speaking.
did want one I could take comfort in.
I hate the clinging vine«, so I talked
to Tom about it all I could. Of course,
I praised her as much as I could man
age and did not let him hear of any
thing but Sally when he was at home.
And, of course, when he was with her
she didn't nearly come up to what I'd
said of her, and he naturally began to
notice her defects.
"Especially after Mrs. Burkes niece
came to town. Being next door, Tom
saw a good deal of her. Sally was
spunky and objected to his taking
Trlxy around. I told him It waa a
warning, for nothing's worse than a
jealous wife. So he told Sally they'd
Uiui- t/icak off. He was just OS nics
10 minute talk, and waste 15 trying to
get into a position where a flashlight can't
miss 'em. There was one of these boys
one night who wouldn't be sidetracked.
The committee had to put him on, so they
gave him the job of presenting a chest
of silver to the guest of honor. They
figured anybody could do that, and it was
impossible to be long at it. Well, sir, I'll
never forget that speech. Either the com
mittee hadn't seen that chest, or our
friend had. He made the speech, all right,
and he presented the silver, but he pre
sented it by the piece and not by the
chest. Xaturally the committee wore a
She said I looked like an illustrated page of "Don'ts" out of of a cook book.
little sore, but you should have heard
them after dinner when they found it took
their man longer to present it than it did
the jeweler to mark it."
Cant Get Along ''"X "W.
"Why didn't the toastmaster stop him?"
"Well, he did give him the two whistle
signal a couple of times, but he only went
into neutral and let his engine speed."
"At that I suppose it would be impos
sible to get along without a toastmaster?"
"That might be, but somehow or other
I have always thought that even if there
about it as he could be, but she wailed
and wept, for she was sure of a good
home, you see, with him. But he was
firm, and that was ended and I was
"Even then the girls couldn't leave
the poor boy in peace. Truly, I al
most lose track. When Trlxy found
he had broken with Sally she put in
her best licks and she had his ring in
less than two weeks. What do you
think of that for forwardness In a
girl? I wouldn't have her ln the fam
ily! There'd be nothing she'd stop at!
SHE DIDX'T LAST LOXG
"But she didn't last long. Tom
realised what she was, and he wrote
her that he found they weren't suited
and she'd best forget him. She was
popular, a« they always are, so she
was more than willing to pick up
w-lth some other man, for she kept
Tom's ring, and the mora she could
engage herself the more rings she'd
get, you see! Tom's generous, and
wouldn't make a- fuss for it, though
were no insurance brokers we would still
get our money if the house burned, and,
while I don't know much about music,
I have enjoyed many a Sunday concert
without even seeing a drum major, but,
as you say, perhaps they couldn't get
along without a toastmaster."
"Well, suppose they did do away with
toastmasters; you couldn't work any me
chanical contrivance like the recent self
starting-innovation on an automobile."
"A self-starter may be an innovation,
as far as automobiles are concerned, but
I know it has been going on at dinners
ever since food ,was first served cold-
Why, corporal, if. at the next public ban
quet that is given in this town no one
is asked to speak, I'll bet my uniform that
if the toastmaster were to eulogize the
next speaker, and mention no names, that
before he would have an opportunity to
put his napkin back in his collar nine
tenths of the men in the room would be
on their feet, and each man would think
that the others were standing up in order
to give him an enthusiastic reception."
Why the Names in Such
"Still I can't understand why, if that's
the case, so much space is always given
to names of those that speak on these
various occasions. I've never read an ac
count of one of them yet but what the
names of the speakers are given in large
"Yes, and you couldn't find any men
tion of what they said with a microscope.
Corporal, whenever you read the names
you can be glad you didn't go, but when-
ever they print what they said, it's safe
to be sorry you missed it."
"Well, have -you never enjoyed your
self at even one of 'em?''
"Yes; I was on duty at one that was a
whirlwind. The toastmaster was the only
one I have ever listened to who impressed
me that he was happy at home. Most
of the toastmasters are so conservative
that I'll bet they would handle a billiard
ball as if they were afraid of breaking the
yolk, but this fellow took a chance. He
took a lot of 'em. In fact, he took one
too many, but maybe he wasn't to blame
for that. Corporial, I dislike to talk about
I advised him to get back the ring.
"Tom had met Susie at a party-
Just before he met Trlxy. He hadn't
been much impressed at first, for she
was quiet and not so forward as most
girls. But he met her again a few
days later, just before he broke off
with Trlxy, and I guess he proposed
to her right away.
"Well, she hung on to him and set
an early wedding date, and she cap
tured him, all right.
"I'm so glad It's over! He just
couldn't refuse any one anything if it
wag in h\s power, but now giris will
leave him alone, I suppose, and he'll
live in peace.
"They'll be hsppy. Oh, yes. Tom
has such a loyal nature, and I'm
proud of him. But aren't girls
Fifty years ago there was one luna
tic in 675 of the population, now
there Is one in 236? At this rate In
SOO years there will be more in__y_j
than sane people In the wort 3.
"If ever / /ounJ mpse// in *7ie position
of toastmaster Yd let the speakers get up
whenever it suited them, but believe me,
Yd have the "Gentlemen, Be Seated"
concession in my own name."
myself, and I hate to fight against odds—
but I'll guarantee to kill the liveliest din-
ncr ever given if you will allow me 10 .
minutes and one sleight .of hand man." (
Man Who Yells
"Louder" Is Pest
"I take it the toastmaster must have
a lot to contend with?"
"You're right again."
"I suppose it's no easy job to keep a
big crowd of men quiet so that the
speaker can have a chance?"
"No, it's not easy, but it should be
simple. If the man who is always yelling
"Louder" would only keep quiet, every
body could hear."
"I'd like to go to just one of 'em. It's
a long time since I've heard anything
"You'll never hear it there; not bat
Vt hat they try it on whenever they get a
chance. I went up and did a plain clothes
stunt one night because the word was out
the speaker of the evening was one of
those original fellows."
"And was he?" j
"I should say not; he wasn't even a
good carbon copy."
"What do you consider the greatest
qualification for a successful speaker?"
"An ability and a willingness to play
squat tag. It's the surest thing, too
know, corporal, that the man who avails
himself of the very first opportunity to
sit down is the only one who is compelled
to stand up and bow his appreciation.'*
"There's one thing sure—you can't b«
a guest of honor at one of these big affairs
unless you've done something."
The Test for Real
Jolly Good Fellomjs
"And you couldn't be a martyr for the
same reason. Now, martyrs were doing
business long before the first guest of
honor believed what the toastmaster said
about him, only the martyrs didn't suffer
"I don't see why they give these things.
According to your story, they are nothing
but an expense."
"That seems to be a pretty general
opinion, but it's wrong. You know, cor
poral, very few people stop to consider
that if the free lunch didn't pay they'd
charge for it."
"Well, if it's just a case of suffering, I
don't care to go to any of 'em. Besides
I'm not in favor of capital punishment
"Neither am I except for the maniac
who starts "For He's a Jolly Good
"What have you got against that
"Nothing in particular, except that it
isn't a song, and if he was a jolly good
fellow, he'd be drinking beer at Herbert's
instead of bubbles at the Fairmont."
"I'm glad you spoke of
reminds of something. So long."
According to official statistics re
cently compiled in Germany, tbe num
ber of centenarians in Europe Is far
greater than Is generally Imagined.
Spain possesses 410, France 213,
Jtaly 197, Great Britain 92, Russia
89. Belgium 5 and Denmark 2. Switz
erland has none. The Balkan states
hold the record. In Bulgaria alone
there are no fewer than 3,883 cen
tenarians, and there are another
1,074 in Roumanla and 578 in Servia.
The state of Pennsylvania has
passed a law requiring - prospective
brides and bridegrooms to answer 48
questions relative to their mental and
physical condition before a marriage
license is Issued.
♦ # •
Good mortar must consist of at
least one-third lime.
A remarkable women's fashion re
ported from Paris consists in wear
ing waistcoats of the regulation
men's style and size, cot the small
vests that were tentatively intro
duced some time ago. Some experts
predict that a man's heavy gold
watch chain will follow suit, to give
a finish to the garment.
* ♦ *
Dr. Charles Perrier, police surgeon
at Nlmes, France, concludes from ex
periments lasting 10 years that
thieves and incendiaries havS> tha
longest feet; coiners come next; thea*
being followed in regular order of
succession by dynamiters, tramps,
swindlers and poisoners.
* * »
Gold coin loses 1 p»r cent of weight
in 60 years, jdlvaj tn *9
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