CITY FELLER we know stayed overnight in a small northerly Ontario hamlet not long back, and struck up a conversation with a local observer whom he interviewed in front of a barbershop. "What’s the population of this place?” queried our man.
“ ’’Paint easy to any,” replied his new acquaintance, puffing thought-
fully on one of the city man’s cigarettes. "There’s quite a lot of folks hereabout«, but some of them ain’t good enough to be counted.”
• • •
An old-timer from the Yukon who long ago retired to the soft life of the effete East, has just arrived back footsore and gasping from his trek to Vancouver and the big reunion of originals of the Trail of ’48. As you probably read at the time, the sourdough poet, Robert W. Service, mushed in ail the way from that other famous gold town, Monte Carlo, for the occasion. The cheechako bard was given an ovation from the platform but one old gold panner who no longer hears or sees too well didn’t recognize him when he later banged into him in the throng.
"Hi, old-timer—how much gold did you dig in ’98?” he demanded jovially, and when the poet shook his head his questioner demanded again, “Hey? What did you do?”
“I was the man who cremated Sam McGee!” Service finally shouted in his ear.
“Oh—” declared the oldster, suddenly catching on. “Undertaker, eh?”
• • •
Now that all the fall fairs should be about over we can perhaps safely report the terrifying experience of a man who attended the Ottawa Livestock Show and found a spot at the rail to watch the judging. Beside him was an exasperated mother with a son too small to see over the barrier and too big for the mother to hoist up for a look. In helpful mood the chap said, “Here, Sonny—” and plucked him off the ground to perch him atop an upturned barrel.
The sinking sensation the gentle-
man felt, next moment was as nothing to that, experienced by the lad as he disappeared through what wasn’t the bottom of the barrel but merely a layer of tan bark floating on a tall tubful of water. And neither were to be compared to the outrage of the mother when her soaked and screaming youngster was hastily retrieved and deposited streamingly in her arms.
• • •
A Parade scout in Montreal tells us of sitting in a bar the other evening when the chap beside him, after ordering two drinks, put down a t.wo-dollar bill to cover the $1.45 cheque. When the waiter returned with the change he laid down a nickle and a 50-cent piece. The customer looked at it, then hesitantly picked up the half-dollar with a somewhat embarrassed glance at the waiter.
“That’s all right, sir,” declared the barkeeper. “I gambled and I lest.”
• • •
A divisional health officer was the speaker at a district farmers’ meeting down Windsor, N.S., way a few weeks ago. Having mounted the rostrum in the village school he was well into his speech on rural sanitation when the kettle began to sing happily on the stove in the comer, and at this one of the ladies in charge of refreshments quietly busied herself getting the tea things ready. The visitor was just winding up to his climax about the need for careful inspection of wells when a gasp from the corner stopped him in mid-sentence. Speaker and
audience turned to stare at the tealady, who in turn was staring at a frog she had just fished from the bubbling kettle with a fork.
“—exactly as I was saying,” continued the health man, making a fast recovery. “If frogs can get into your well water, what about bacteria?”
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