“Come over here!” called a friend to an intoxicated citizen whom he saw across the street.
The man addressed blinked and shook his head.
“Come over there?” he called back. “Why, it’s all I can do to stay where I am.”
* * *
Amos Perkins was hired in the spring to shoot muskrats, which were overrunning the mill dam. An acquaintance paused to chat one day with Amos, who was sitting at ease on the bank of the stream, his gun safely out of reach.
“I hear the muskrats are undermining the dam,” the acquaintance said.
“So they be, so they be!” Amos agreed.
“Hi! there goes one!” cried the visitor, pointing. “Shoot! Why don’t you shoot, man?”
Amos spat tobacco juice emphatically, and answered: “Huh! think I want to lose my job?”
* * *
The disgruntled fisherman at the club lifted his voice and complained loudly. He protested against the base trickery of his two companions on the trip.
“It was agreed,” he explained, “before we started, that the one who caught the first fish must stand treat to a supper. Now, you’d hardly believe it, but it’s a fact that when we got to fishing, both those fellows deliberately refused to pull in their lines when they had bites, just so I’d be stuck.”
The grouchy fisherman relaxed slightly.
“Oh,” he explained, “it wasn’t as bad as that. You see, I didn’t have any bait on my hook.”
* * *
A G. A. R. veteran told to some members of the American Legion the story of a private in the Civil War, who during the first battle of Bull Run found a post hole into which he lowered himself, so that only his eyes were above the level of the ground. An officer, noting this display of cowardice, darted to the spot, and with a threatening gesture of his sword, shouted fiercely, “get out of that hole!”
But the skulker did not come out. On the contrary, he put his thumb to his nose and waggled his fingers insultingly.
“Not on your life,” he retorted. “Hunt a hole for yourself. This belongs to me.”
* * *
The woman hesitated over buying the silver service.
“Of course,” she said, “I take your word for it that it’s solid silver, but somehow it doesn’t look it.”
“A great advantage, ma’am,” the shopkeeper declared suavely. “That service can be left right out in plain sight, and no burglar will look at it twice.”