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energy all that day, sold a big order to the business rival of the old grouch who had started me going, unloaded a lot of paint on the contractor who was putting up a new schoolhouse, and went right on to the next town fully determined to do business regardless of the grouches who got in the way. When I returned home for the week-end I knew that I was at last master of myself. My sales had been large, and I was confident that I would be able to keep right on selling. It is entirely out of the question for me to describe the exultation I felt when I realized that I had actually broken the bondage to a craven fear that had shamed me secretly all my life. The old yellow streak was gone and I was a man among other men—head up, confident, buoyant, successful. I can explain my unusual success that first week on the assumption that I had the brains, knowledge, and energy necessary, which immediately began to bring results as soon as they had free play. My pay increased rapidly, and I looked longingly at an automobile, but the best girl in the world advised me to save my money and wait a while for the automobile. We got married and went to housekeeping in a modest way. She made me save money after we got started, and later encouraged me to buy stock in the concern for which I was working. This was the second big turning point in my life. Out of a hundred and fifty men traveling for this company I was the only one to ask for stock and pay down the cash for it. This fact attracted the attention of the directors, who felt that a salesman who was putting his savings into the concern he was serving should have something to say about how the institution was managed, and they eventually made me a director.
A Chance for Every Man
WELVE years from the time I
stopped being afraid of meeting peo
ple I became vice president, and my particular job was to develop the efficiency of our entire sales force. While sitting on the board of directors I made the suggestion that I could go through the plant, look for intelligent young men who were held back by fear, and show them how to overcome it. Some of the very best salesmen we now have on the road are young men discovered in this way in our own business. Other men have been transferred from one department to another until they found the exact place that suited them. A few promising men were transferred entirely out of the organization into other occupations for the good of our enterprise and their own good. I got them jobs elsewhere, and they are doing well. Our lines of promotion have been rearranged so that every man in the establishment has an outlook ahead
Can We Make Happiness by Law?
Continued from page 7
Take a few cases in point. The law, operating through injunction, said that the coal miners must not strike. They obeyed the law, but they did not work— and they might as well have been striking. We have set up laws requiring a minimum wage on the theory that no man or woman who is employed should receive less than a fixed amount, which amount is calculated to keep body and soul together. These are splendid laws in conception, but hardly had they everywhere been passed when along came the expansion of credit and the depreciation in the dollar's buying power, and wiped, in effect, the laws from the statute books, for even at the present time, with declining prices, the sums which they stipulate are not enough to support life. We have quite generally fixed the hours of labor in industry, but we discover that when the work is there to be done the employees prefer to work through longer hours and get overtime pay.
of him, and that outlook is plainly marked on a blue print posted in each department. The idea I got hold of while still in the packing room—to learn all I could about the big fellows before I approached them—has become a part of our regular selling plan. We have two kinds of customers, dealers and big consumers, and we have them all classified for the benefit of the men on the road and the sales manager. There is plenty of teamwork between the house and the field in this regard, for the salesman has the advantage of all the data the house has been able to gather about a particular prospect. And in return we require salesmen to give the house the benefit of all the data they may obtain. I am a crank on knowing all about the buyer before approaching him, and I insist on personal interviews and conferences wherever they can be had, for all these matters tend to break down fear by developing confidence. We put great stress on interviews. All department heads are encouraged to keep in close touch with the men under them, win their confidence and learn of impending trouble in order to prevent it. At the outset I shrank from interviews and thought of them with positive terror, but now I seek for them eagerly. The play of personality on personality involved in the interview means everything to both persons concerned. It is my opinion that there are many men, young and middle-aged, who are comparative failures because of the same obstacle that blocked me as a boy. A very little flaw will hold a good man down. I hope this personal revelation of my own experience will prompt others to search themselves for the fault that lies within, and which no one but themselves can remove. Both success and failure come from inside of ourselves. They are not imposed upon us by others from the outside. If a man lacks courage, let him set out to find a remedy. He may find it as I did, or he may stumble across some other cure. The main thing is to recognize that Fear can be strangled. If I should be asked for a short remedy for fear, I would advise the fearful one to drive himself into doing the most disagreeable task that stands in his way. If he shrinks from a certain man or woman, by all means let him face that person as soon as possible, and get the fear out of his system. By taking the most disagreeable task first, all lesser evils will shrink into insignificance. There are two ways of entering a swimming hole. One is to wade in carefully, timidly, and shrinkingly, which usually causes a headache by forcing the blood into the head, and the other is to plunge in head first. Learn to make the long dive in facing the disagreeable tasks of business and daily living and you will command your own self-respect and the respect of others.
We fixed a price for wheat which at the time gave an excessive profit to the good farmer and a fair profit to the inefficient farmer; by that very act we so raised prices that within a few months wages had risen to such an extent, and commodity prices therefore had to increase to such an extent, that the farmer, receiving by virtue of law a very high money price for his wheat, was actually getting no more purchasing power and in some districts even less than in the years when wheat was selling around 60 and 70 cents. Now the control is off and wheat is down; the farmer thinks he is being hurt, but really he is being hurried back to normal.
Both the Federal and the State governments imposed so many laws on the railroads that in certain States it was impossible to operate without violating the law. Then, under the magic of “government control,” the management never attained at its highest
A new Oliver now for only $64. The very same typewriter that sold for $100 before the war. The very same high quality in every respect. A saving to you of $36 solely because of our new plan of selling direct from factory to user.
We inaugurated this plan during the war when economy was so strongly urged. We broke away from the old system which was so complicated, so costly and wasteful.
We no longer have numerous branch houses throughout the country. Nor a large army of traveling salesmen. We save the money that was going for branch office rent and upkeep. We save the salaries, commissions and road expenses of traveling salesmen. We dispense with other superfluous selling costs. The saving is $36 on a machine. And that goes to you/
Try before you buy
Examine and test the Oliver free —all at our risk and expense. Get it on five days’ free trial—no money down. Note how simple and sturdy it is in construction. Observe the fine work it does.
See for yourself if you would not rather have the Oliver than any $100 typewriter you know of. If you don't think so, just send it back at our expense (express collect). We even refund the outgoing transportation charges. So you don't lose a cent on the free trial.
If you are delighted with the Oliver and want to keep it, you may pay for it on easy terms. Take over a year to pay at the easy rate of only $4 a month.
- Before the War
Note how commodity prices went up with the war.
You're paying double or more the pre-war prices for nearly everything. Yet the Oliver sells for $36 less than before the war. That shows the economy of our direct selling.
Prized by big business
1021 orver Typewriter Bldg., chicago, u.
p me a new-oliver Nine for five days free inspection. If I keep it. I will o at the rate of $4 per month. The title to remain in you until fully paid for.
Do not send a machine until 1 order it. Mail me your book-"The High cost of typewriters—The Reason and the Remedy,” your deluxe catalog and further information.
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it can do will be negative.
of Can We Make Happiness by Law? to
The law can stop,
but it can not
start. Still, the belief in the constructive
power of the law persists. They call it
government or municipal ownership. They say, in effect, that government
ownership fails because the individuals
doing the managing are not quite perfect. But when the individual shall have arrived at a state of perfection he will not need any government at all. The greed for money is not back of the “public-be-damned” attitude of certain corporations. Most men have learned that in the making of money the public cannot continuously be damned. Ignorant, intolerant, oppressive measures find their genesis, not in the lust for profit, but in the lust for power, and it is intensified, not mitigated, when the question of profit is removed. Jealousy of power is responsible for that well-known fabric known as red tape. The true bureaucrat finds his only recreation in devising new and intricate Any considerable extension of governmental activities in the way of ownership would cause a blight to fall upon this country to which no epidemic with which we have ever had experience would be comparable.
What Government Can Do
OSITIVE governmental action is bound to be disappointing. We had a clear demonstration of this in the legislation on the high cost of living. The Government can set an example by economy in expenditure, it can pare to the bone, and it can readjust taxes so that every income will have to bear a share. The Government can do a great deal to help stabilize prices, but the best And the negative measures of moment the Government most assuredly will not pass. It will not cut its own expenditures excepting under pressure, for so doing would deprive good and worthy voters of places; it will not curb the amount people have to spend by extending the income-paying classes to include those of small incomes, for that would be a move so unpopular as to make it impossible to reelect the party responsible for the extension. No panacea for the high cost of living will ever be devised by the Government, and in the very nature of things cannot be. It is unlikely that rices will ever return to their former evels. One of the ways that nature has of adjusting her affairs is, when a government creates an impossible debt, to respond with a measure of inflation which immediately, by decreasing the value of money, in effect cuts a big slice off that debt. We have cut our national debt about 50 per cent by this process. Reducing the high cost of living is not in the end very in portant, and is probably impossible, for undoubtedly we have moved to a new scale of prices; but what is important is the stabilization of prices so that gradually an adjustment between work and remuneration may be attained. Prices are dropping very low, but they will undoubtedly take a higher permanent level than, say, in 1913-14. In the past the workman has very often got considerably less than his work was worth, and I am inclined to the view that the general stirring and upsetting of values may cause a better set of values to evolve. Just as water must seek its own level, so must the relative worth of services find their true measure. That is the inevitable balance of nature. It might or might not aid in this process to stabilize the purchasing power of the gold dollar by adjusting it from time to time on the basis of specific buying power. This is the method advocated by Professor Fisher, but it can hardly be tested until the world in general turns from manufacturing money to manufacturing goods. From all of this it might appear that I am wholly against governmental activity of any sort. That is not true. What I am trying to point out
Continued from page 27
is the fallacy which runs through our legislation, through our discussions of social problems, through our political oratory and the labor union and other propaganda, that the Government can by law do anything and everything, that it can make unequal things equal and opposite things identical, that it possesses a magic, or that nonsense becomes common sense when enacted into law.
What is the reason for government? The United States, for instance, was not formed to create anything. The States banded together for mutual protection and to prevent citizens from harming one another, and then gradually they added certain matters in which collective action was necessary, such as national defense, preservation of order, administration of justice, and so on, through a host of regulatory statutes.
It is a natural function of the Government to provide hospitals, to preserve the public health, and by analogy to afford a wide opportunity for education. In all of these activities it will be noted that similar institutions when conducted by private means are not commonly well administered for profit. The private school or the private hospital, managed to the end of securing profit, is never so efficacious as the private school or private hospital managed on contributions, endowments, or otherwise not to the end of securing a profit. We are very generally agreed that the Government can to good purpose regulate corporate as well as private activities. There could be no question of restraining private individuals who do wrong, and so there can be no question of restraining those individuals when they combine in a corporation. The real controversy lies between those who believe that government control should be limited to regulation and those who believe that it should be extended to government ownership and operation.
The case, for government ownership has received its strongest support from two groups, one comprising those politicians who see before them an entrancing vision of many hundreds of thousands of government appointments to be placed at the disposal of political patronage and the other comprising men whose knowledge of business administration has no foundation in experience—whose views have not been chastened by the actual responsibility of keeping a great organization in working order.
Count These Votes
O the mind of a man familiar with
the technical and executive prob
lems of conducting a big business of any kind, government ownership threatens the existence of every condition upon which efficient and economical service depends.
A private company must find its own capital—that is to say, it must live upon a supply of money voluntarily furnished by the investing public. If this supply is not to be cut off, the company must pay dividends, and dividends can be earned only if the cost of production be kept down and the efficiency of service kept up. But under government ownership it
is otherwise. The Government does not depend upon a voluntary supply of money; it can raise all the money it wants in the form of taxes. This relieves it from all pressure to run its enterprises at a profit. This would not in itself be a fatal objection to government ownership if the Government were under any compulsion to render a high quality of service. This compulsion is lacking; it has no competition. If the evils of government ownership could be confined to extravagant operation and poor service, the case would be bad enough; but it would, in fact, be accompanied by political consequences far more serious than expense and inconvenience. These would change the whole structure of our Government.
panies, and tele. Phone companies
- of the Uni States have on their pay rolls o:
mately three million employees. this number we add ... this.'” lion to represent their wives and fan. ilies, we could safely assume that this Qass would represent at least four mii. lson votes, a total equal to more than 25 per cent of all votes cast at the prolo, election of 1916. so large a proportion of the lar vote §od. by the ado to”. government ownership, be made a vote of government appointees, our political institutions would be thrown off bai. ance. Political parties would vie with each other to secure this vote; and the bait offered would take the form of increased wages, decreased hours of work, , and , relaxed discipline. While this kind of thing would ruin the serv. ices concerned, it would at the same time debauch our politics, and present to any party in power the temptation to fortify itself in office by purchasing the votes of all, government employees, through concessions for which the whole country would have to pay.
Keep the Road Open
HAT, then, do we want out of the Government? Human nature being what it is, a certain amount of restriction is now and probably always will be needed. There is a world of wisdom in the saying that the best government is that which governs least, which looks to a time when each man shall pursue his own ends with so little interference with the rights of others that only a slight restraint shall be required from the public authority. A government really exists to establish justice, not efficiency. When we laugh at the old notion that the king could not do wrong we might as well complement that laugh with the equally absurd idea that the government can do no wrong. Governments are but collections of human beings, and, of course, they can make mistakes. Concretely what we are after is the most efficient expression of the democratic ideal—that is, the expression of these three points: 1. That the Government must operate within its own sphere and not undertake things which are beyond its powers. 2. That the mechanism for ascertaining the will of the people should give intelligent and unequivocal results. 3. That when the will of the people has been ascertained, it should be put into execution through a businesslike and efficient administration. Which is another way of saying that we might well ascertain what the business of a government is and then be somewhat insistent upon seeing that it minds its business. The best way of seeing that the government minds, its business is to have a strong and fairly militant minority which is continually assailing the party in power. The vital strength of democracy is in the con: tinuous and pointedly expressed belief of a considerable section of the people that they could run the Government better than those who are running it. The value of our political institutions is in the ideals which they embody and not in the man who happens to be in office. We have no machinery for electing ideals, and it is most unfortunate that, especially during the war, the absurd notion grew that there was something inseparable between the ideals of the Government and the people occupying offices. That is the vicious trend which results in dictatorship. The founders of our Government wrote “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty,” and then they proceeded to translate the phrase into practical terms by providing that what might be libel of a private individual was only justifiable criticism of a public officer. The best thing that the Government can do is to keep the roads to success open, to see that no one erects barriers on them. And, most particularly, that it does not erect them itself. Most of us ask no more.
The Red Mike
Continued from page 9
The officer below went on to new fields to conquer, and The Red Mike returned to work. Rod's neck got purplish black. “Once,” said the chaperone, “a Secretery made a short speech. He was the idol of the Navy.” Forty minutes. If you look at The Red Mike with an open mind, you cant help but wish he wasn't a Red Mike. Fifty minutes. The speech was never going to end. . What good does it do to have a Red Mike good-looking and avenging your wrongs? The sun sat crossways of the glass roof and just baked down. Why should the best type of the male sects hate girls? Two Youngsters across the hall were arguing with another two about who should carry out their plebe, and little did they know an officer was creeping up behind while the obliging plebe lay lifeless and waiting. When one has a deep sorrow it is well to get interested in little things. I kept on being interested in the Youngsters and the plebe and the officer until the chaperone called me back to consciousness. “There he goes,” she said.
Y eyes flew back to The Red Mike, and lit on Rod lying flat on the floor with his face turned up while his persecutors stooped to lift him up, and mother slipped from my grasp. In great haste I followed her to stop whatever she was going to do. The Red Mike and his mate was putting Rod down on the grass in the shade outside when I caught up, but they mixed inextricably with the crowd when they saw fire in mother's eye. “Rod,” said she, shaking off my hand. “You dont have to pretend—” “Bingham,” came in awful tones from an officer calling Rod by his last name, and as both mother and I wilted before the blast we felt our arms grabbed in a strong grasp which shoved us far ahead to the safety of a distant gun base. “Let go,” panted mother in great anger. “Let go.” “Want to make it worse for him?” growled The Red Mike, and now we saw it was no other than he, which thrilled me to the core. “Bully 1" said mother, nothing daunted. “My own sister-in-law's boy!” Never having heard her lose any sleep over the promminent member, I doubted my senses as did The Red Mike too, for his eyes rolled like handsome, blue marbles. “Your sister-in-laws—” He would have said more, but ended in a gurgle. “No matter,” I hastened to reassure him. “He is but a cousin and has often put salt down my neck.” “No matter,” came mother's cold tones. “Is it no matter that we cannot go to the hop with Rod in jail?” “Brig,” groaned The Red Mike. “Not jail—brig.” “Oh, the officer wouldn't be so mean'." was my cry. “Wouldn’t he?” asked The Red Mike. You dont know him! Qh, Lord—that I should pick the one plebe–And this Aunt Winifred is the Main Gate—” Thinking his poor mind had cracked, I glanced around. The two midshipmen who had been at the train were strolling by, and The Red Mike was fighting for his life once more with Aunt Winifred as a weapon. “You have put our escort in jail,” said mother, who saw but was now Ruthless. “What are you going to do to make up for that?” “Do? Do?” squeaked he till my heart bled. “Why—as you will note, Aunt Winifred, the Severn is a river—” “You have assumed Rod's responsibilities.” “Responsibilities? To femmes? But I'm a Re—on the left Bancroft Hall—” “The punishment should fit the crime.” “But he wasn't a Red Mike! I am. How can I drag his femmes? How can I— Just back of the tree you will note the gymnasium—I’m a Red Mike, I tell you. All my life I’ve been a Red Mike.
I'll get somebody else to do it. That gray thing is the sea wall. I'll tell the officer I did it— I'll go to the stew myself—” “Brig,” said mother, who choses queer times to be funny. “Brig, not stew. And going to the brig you would leave us short of two escorts instead of one. No, young man. Though the rest of your life is spent rebuilding your reputation as a Red Mike—we will expect you to call for us this evening at nine.” A June week hop would make a different girl of anybody. And my hair being bobbed went fine, as it is quite the thing and rated cute by midshipmen. Words are ; But there is little else to tell abdut the great events which happened with, so I will use some which though poor things are my own. The greatest thing that happened was the moon. It lay butter side down in the sky with spatters of stars around while little winds and whispers, etc., came down making you all scared and quiet to the inmost recesses and your hands cold though the night be hot. Next to the moon comes the sea wall with couples holding together in terror lest they fall off and perrish in the Severn below, while chaperones think they already must have and wonder what kind of funeral wreathes shall they drop on the fast flowing river. Next to the sea wall comes the ball park! With bleechers white from the moon!! And a honey suckle vine!!! Then the band in the Armory, and even the Armory itself with happy faces and signal flags to put your chaperone under, so you could find her again if you ever needed her. Words are futle. Mother said all's well that ends dandy, and lets be polite to the Red Mike. But at first she could have saved her pains to cool her porrige, as he was callus to all but his ruined life. The two midshipmen mentioned above were outside the hotel when we left together, at which The Red Mike groaned so loud it rung my heart and I said Thanks, but I didn't care to burden anybody. My program was all made out by Rod anyway and nicely decorated besides with hand paintings of the signal flag I was to be under so they could find me.
T that he grabbed the program and, scorning the hand-painted signal flag, said if he'd been making my
program he'd have grabbed the best plebe artist in school and held his head 4%
under water till he'd turned out program decorations that were program decorations. So thrilled was I that I murmured “Next year,” at which The Red Mike grew dark and grim once more. Expecting nothing great was my reward, for hardly had we entered the Armory when The Red Mike grabbed me in despair and growled: “Come on.” And, though suffocating with joy, I soon saw that he danced devinely. “Phonograph in our room,” explained he. “Wife made me learn.” “Wife?” broke from my ashen lips as we did a peachy step. “Room mate. We call um that. Same thing as wife. Nag all day and night. That's him — there — the whale-shaped destroyer on the sky line. 'Sfollowed like a sub chaser since yesterday sunset. Let him. Let um all. Let um think I’m draggin' blind.” “My goodness!” “’Swhat we call ut. Draggin' a femme you never lamped before. Bad risk—all bricks. Not for me. Nothing for me. Off femmes from earliest youth. Wait till I catch that bilger at sea. I'll make him laugh—play him out for shark bait.” “Why have you not liked femmes from earliest youth?” enquired I as shuddered at the future fait of his room mate. “Name,” said he. “Dont you like your name?” “Like Malachi? Like Malachi Milo?” “Oh!” “That's what the first femme who had a chance did to me.” For a moment silence rained, the
France has almost won her great fight against war's destruction. Eighty per cent of her wrecked and crippled factories again hum with activity. All of the 4,006 villages and towns in the devastated regions have again resumed municipal life; and of the 6,445 schools in this vast area, 5,345 have been rebuilt and opened. Farms, factories and homes again cover most of the scarred land.
In her reconstruction, France has shown the same unconquerable spirit that stopped her invaders at the Marne.
- And here, at home, another great peaceful victory is being
One Policy r_
won against the greatest odds. This has been the fight of the Bell telephone employees to rebuild a national service.
Despite all of the difficulties of the post-war period, the organized forces of the Bell system have established new records in maintenance and construction.
Facing, after the armistice, a public demand such as was never before known, they have yet responded to the nation's need with hundreds of new buildings, thousands of miles of new wires and cables, and with the installation in the last year, alone, of over half a million new telephones.
AMERICAN TELEPHONE AND TELEGRAPH COMPANY
band having stopped while he raised not so much as a finger in applause. But travel helps a lot, and in the pause I remembered some monuments seen at home and abroad. “Its like David Farragut and Horatio Nelson,” said I sweetly, and glittered my hair a little in his eyes. “All Admirals are Biblical or out of the classics.” “Come on 1" cried he, applauding so loudly the band complied at once. Before the encore was half over, he said: “Your flag's Nan.” Nan is the pet name for a certain signal flag, and the flag I sat under was across the room from it. “No,” I argued. “Mine is the white one with—” “Your flag's Nan'" And I said no more, understanding, but nearly swooned with joy. So we sat under the wrong flag and no partners came to spoil our happiness. He grew quite interested talking about himself and waiting for me to say “How wonderful” in the right places, though his face reddened with pain as the room mate paced by; but he kept on with his subject. “Bad risk though—the navy,” he said. “Different if somebody cared—” And then while my cup was trembling on the brink he hurled me into it and dragged me out to the ball park. The ball park! The bleechers! And the couples who got there first!!! “Make me sick,” said The Red Mike as his fiery eyes swept the bleechers. “'Shdthink the spoons could cut out mush for one night. Nothin's s'bad's a crab that goes soft. Nothing's fooler'n an Annapolass braying about cruise and wigwagging for somebody to be sorry on the last night. 'Shdthink they’d face their luck—rotten luck— darned bad risk—” “Oh,” I cried, “I’m so sorry—I—” “Come on,” shrieked he in terror and dragged me back to the lighted hall of pleasure. He made no effort to deceive me about “Nan” this time. He even stopped looking like he didn't know I was along when we passed his room mate who was still looking on. Instead, like one fighting with his back to the wall, he snatched my program in his room mate's very face and stuffed it into his pocket. “You wont need that,” said he in defiance, and I felt like what's her name who adored William the Conqueror ever after he dragged her out of hiding by the hair. Our understanding now got so deep that words were of no avale. Silently we wove long hard steps to music of the band. His blue serge chest heaved with thought and the heat, and I scarce dared breathe lest the bubble should burst. Once we remembered mother, The Red Mike wondering did she need water. So we got her that and two dishes of ice cream so she wouldn't feel neglected, and drifted back. Only once more did his teeth grit as we passed the room mate. The next time the worst, was over and, smiling wearily, he said to me: “Come on.”
T was not to the bleechers that I fol. lowed now, but to the stary height that all girls hope for, the sea wall, and it is for this that words are futle. The moon was above and the Severn below. Out on the bay battleships were getting ready to carry our nation's flower away next day. The hurt in my throat seemed part of some great throbbing hurt in everything. Scared, I tried to break it with my voice. “The moon—its beautiful—isn't it?” “Yes—isn't it?” was the answer that sounded like I felt. Two dances went by in the Armory. A wind from the moon lifted my hair, drying the dampness at the roots with fingers both sharp and soft. The water of the Severn talked against the wall. “Maybe we'd better go in,” I whispered. “Yes, isn't it?” said he. But frightened as I was at his answer, still we didn't go in. We sat where we were, one of hundreds of couples as speechless as ourselves. The moon came down so close we were mid
way between it and the water. The bells out on the ships still thought they told the time, not knowing that the great black emptiness drank them up like drops. Drank them up—drank them up—as it was drinking me— Terrified I tucked my eighteen-dollar pumps under me and braced to my feet. Trembling, The Red Mike reached out and pinched a tuck of my dress between his thumb and finger. “Do-dont go,” he begged. the loveliest— Come back—” The water went on talking against the wall. There was a warm heart back of the gold face of the moon. My feet cried out against being stood on, but I scarcely noted their complaint, Over in the Armory the band drifted to a waltz. “This is the end of a perfect day,” it sang, and long-drawn breaths answered all down the sea wall. The Red Mike got up and stood beside me. “You—you've got to speak early to the chaplain—I mean a fellow—that maybe if a fellow wants to be—married or something next graduation time—and after graduation he gets an Ensign's pay—but he has to speak to the chaplain for a reservation. Busy man—the chaplain— Red Mike all my life— You're the loveliest—” He reached for my hand. His palm hurt mine as the wind had hurt my hair. I wanted to snatch it away— but something stronger than me wanted it to stay. y heart shot against my side like a fist. All I had been scared before was nothing like this—nothing to being alone while the emptiness drank the bells like drops—drank me— alone—alone “Be it ever so humble,” sang the band in the Armory. I wasn't alone— I needn't be scared— There was something warm and safe. Leaping down, I ran. “I want my mother!” sobbed I as he
HEN we got to the hotel mother put me into the big chair by the window. Then she got down and took the lovely eighteen-dollar pumps off my suffering feet. I lay back in the chair, loving her cool hands, feeling the world slip back to its close fit around me. After a while all the frightened feeling went, and I was ironed out in: and quiet and tired, like soft limp slik. “Rod's all right,” said mother. “He came to the Armory to thank Mr. Milo. He really fainted, and is going to be coddled on ship board.” We sat quiet a long time. The moon was where it ought to be, far away and nothing to be scared of. Bells sounded pleasantly on the bay. All over town could be heard the feet of midshipmen who had stayed saying good, bye until the last minute of hop leave and were now pounding over the cobbles. Mother put her lips to the ankle where another girl's heel had gouged. “I’ve been thinking to-night,” she said so slowly it was not like my breathless little mother, “that maybe –por. haps—a girl's school with experienced people to look after you— You see. I've been wondering is maybe I'm not too old—or two young—or something to look after you—” I swept forward and pulled her head
EXT morning I sat up in bed, watching her get ready to take The Red Mike his record. “Do you think,” said I, “I mean—do you suppose he has been a Red Mike— at heart—always?” She handed over the record she was wrapping. “Everyone Was Meant for Someone,” read I on the round thing in the middle. I lay back on the pillow and smiled to myself. So that was the music he couldn't go to sea without! He never was a Red Mike at heart—just scared of girls, and putting on a front to cover it up. I wonder if there are any Red Mikes? I mean really Red Mikes–Red Mikes to the core.