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"Ladies an' gintlemen," he said, "the carpse thanks ye kindly, but he says he's dead, an' he's goin' to stay dead."
Mrs. Minnie Maddern Fiske, the actress, was having her hair dressed by a young woman at her home. The actress was very tired and quiet, but a chance remark from the dresser made her open her eyes and sit up.
"I should have went on the stage," said the young woman complacently.
"But," returned Mrs. Fiske, "look at me-t -think how I have had to work and study to gain what success I have, and win such fame as is now mine!"
"Oh, yes," replied the young woman calmly; "but then I have talent."
Orlando Day, a fourth-rate actor in London, was once called, in a sudden emergency, to supply the place of Allen Ainsworth at the Criterion Theatre for a single night.
The call filled him with joy. Here was a chance to show the public how great a histrionic genius had remained unknown for lack of an opportunity. But his joy was suddenly dampened by the dreadful thought that, as the play was already in the midst of its run, none of the dramatic critics might be there to watch his triumph.
A bright thought struck him. He would announce the event. Rushing to a telegraph office, he sent to one of the leading critics the following telegram: “Orlando Day presents Allen Ainsworth's part to-night at the Criterion."
Then it occurred to him, "Why not tell them all?" So he repeated the message to a dozen or more important persons.
At a late hour of the same day, in the Garrick Club, a lounging gentleman produced one of the telegrams, and read it to a group of friends. A chorus of exclamations followed the reading: "Why, I got precisely the same message!" "And so did I." "And I, too." "Who is Orlando Day? "What beastly cheek!" "Did the ass fancy that one would pay any attention to his wire?"
J. M. Barrie, the famous author and playwright, who was present, was the only one who said nothing.
"Didn't he wire you too?" asked one of the group.
"But of course you didn't answer."
"Oh, but it was only polite to send an answer after he had taken the trouble to wire me. So, of course, I answered him."
"You did! What did you say?"
"Oh, I just telegraphed him: "Thanks for timely warning.'"
Twinkle, twinkle, lovely star!
When at home the tender age
Recipe for an actor:
To one slice of ham add assortment of roles.
Or with eggs-from afar-in the shells.
Recipe for an ingenue:
A pound and three-quarters of kitten,
"I know a nature-faker," said Mr. Bache, the author, "who claims that a hen of his last month hatched, from a setting of seventeen eggs, seventeen chicks that had, in lieu of feathers, fur
"He claimed that these fur-coated chicks were a proof of nature's adaptation of all animals to their environment, the seventeen eggs having been of the cold-storage variety."
In a large store a child, pointing to a shopper exclaimed, "Oh, mother, that lady lives the same place we do. I just heard her say, 'Send it up C. O. D.' Isn't that where we live?"
An Englishman went into his local library and asked for Frederic Harrison's George Washington and other American Addresses. In a little while he brought back the book to the librarian and said:
"This book does not give me what I require; I want to find out the addresses of several American magnates; I know where George Washington has gone to, for he never told a lie."
Not long ago a patron of a cafe in Chicago summoned his waiter and delivered himself as follows:
"I want to know the meaning of this. Look at this piece of beef. See its size. Last evening I was served with a portion more than twice the size of this."
"Where did you sit?" asked the waiter.
"What has that to do with it? I believe I sat by the window."
"In that case," smiled the waiter, "the explanation is simple. We always serve customers by the window large portions. It's a good advertisement for the place."
"Advertising costs me a lot of money."
"Why I never saw your goods advertised."
When Mark Twain, in his early days, was editor of a Missouri paper, a superstitious subscriber wrote to him saying that he had found a spider in his paper, and asking him whether that was a sign of good luck or bad. The humorist wrote him this answer and printed it:
"Old subscriber: Finding a spider in your paper was neither good luck nor bad luck for you. The spider was merely
looking over our paper to see which merchant is not advertising, so that he can go to that store, spin his web across the door and lead a life of undisturbed peace ever afterward."
"Good Heavens, man! I saw your obituary in this morning's paper!"
"Yes, I know. I put it in myself. My opera is to be produced to-night, and I want good notices from the critics." -C. Hilton Turvey.
Paderewski arrived in a small western town about noon one day and decided to take a walk in the afternoon. While strolling along he heard a piano, and, following the sound, came to a house on which was a sign reading:
"Miss Jones. Piano lessons 25 cents an hour."
Pausing to listen he heard the young woman trying to play one of Chopin's nocturnes, and not succeeding very well.
Paderewski walked up to the house and knocked. Miss Jones came to the door and recognized him at once. Delighted, she invited him in and he sat down and played the nocturne as only Paderewski can, afterward spending an hour in correcting her mistakes. Miss Jones thanked him and he departed.
Some months afterward he returned to the town, and again took the same walk.
He soon came to the home of Miss Jones, and, looking at the sign, he read:
"Miss Jones. Piano lessons $1.00 an hour. (Pupil of Paderewski.)"
Shortly after Raymond Hitchcock made his first big hit in New York, Eddie Foy, who was also playing in town, happened to be passing Daly's Theatre, and paused to look at the pictures of Hitchcock and his company that adorned the entrance. Near the pictures was a billboard covered with laudatory extracts from newspaper criticisms of the show.
When Foy had moodily read to the bottom of the list, he turned to an unobtrusive young man who had been watching him out of the corner of his eye.
"Say, have you seen this show?" he asked.
"Sure," replied the young man.
"Any good? How's this guy Hitchcock, anyhow?" “Any good?" repeated the young man pityingly. "Why, say, he's the best in the business. He's got all these other would-be side-ticklers lashed to the mast. He's a scream. Never laughed so much at any one in all my life."
Is he as good as Foy?" ventured Foy hopefully.
"As good as Foy!" The young man's scorn was superb. "Why, this Hitchcock has got that Foy person looking like a gloom. They're not in the same class. Hitchcock's funny. A man with feelings can't compare them. I'm sorry you asked me, I feel so strongly about it."
Eddie looked at him very sternly and then, in the hollow tones of a tragedian, he said:
"I am Foy."
"I know you are," said the young man cheerfully. "I'm Hitchcock!"
Advertisements are of great use to the vulgar. First of all, as they are instruments of ambition. A man that is by no means big enough for the Gazette, may easily creep into the advertisements; by which means we often see an apothecary in the same paper of news with a plenipotentiary, or a running footman with an ambassador.-Addison.
See also Salesmen and Salesmanship.
Her exalted rank did not give Queen Victoria immunity from the trials of a grandmother. One of her grandsons, whose recklessness in spending money provoked her strong disapproval, wrote to the Queen reminding her of his approaching birthday and delicately suggesting that money would be the most acceptable gift. In her own hand she answered, sternly reproving the youth for the sin of extravagance and urging upon him the practice of economy. His reply staggered her:
"Dear Grandma," it ran, "thank you for your kind letter of advice. I have sold the same for five pounds."