PIGS HAVE been associated with Yuletide festivities, of course. In olden days there was the Boar’s Head Procession. In more recent times,
English butchers, in seasonably dressing their windows, would place carcasses of young pigs with their heads toward the glass and with oranges in their mouths.
This used to be—and for all we know may still be—considered quite an effective display. It also enabled the smarter young boys to say to seemingly less bright young boys, “I saw you in the butcher’s this morning.” The innocent would then express some doubt as to the accuracy of the identification, explaining that he hadn’t been in the butcher’s that morning. Whereupon the comic would reply, “Oh, yes, I saw you—in the window, with an orange in your mouth.” This was killingly funny, and both joker and victim would laugh till they cried.
And so, had we really put our mind to it, we might have succeeded in creating an impression that “Staunch to Pig” was in reality a very seasonable title for the opening story of our Christmas number. Whereas in point of fact, A. W. Smith’s story which opens on page seven, has nothing whatever to do with Christmas. The expression “Staunch to Pig” has reference to horses which, in a wild boar hunt, will stand to a charging pig without shying away.
(J WE HAVE heard a number of big game hunters say that pig-sticking, as indulged in in India, is the most hair-raising and most dangerous form of sport known. So it wasn t to be wondered at that Peter Paton, even though he was not much of a ladies’ man, should think it a mad idea for people to want to make a moving-picture story out of a boar hunt, with a lovely heroine being rescued in the nick of time and all that sort of rot. But there is Peter in the first illustration, busy rescuing Felicity Lindsay from a boar who has anything but a Christmas feeling. So it is obvious that he got mixed up in the silly business somehow. It's an exciting yarn, is Staunch to Pig,” and we think you will get a kick out of it.
(J OUR REALLY Christmassy tales are “That Night, by Agnes Sligh Turnbull, on page twelve; Christmas^ Grouch by Ellis Parker Butler, on page fifteen, and J. T.’s Christmas Eve,” by J. E. MacDougall, on page nineteen. All three are widely different. On page four, Frances Douglas and Thelma LeCocq, the Winnipeg girls who wrote “Britannia Waives the Rules and found they had a best-seller, convey to us most amusingly “A Little Noeledge.” On page ten we present All-Western and All-Eastern football teams. The Westerners were selected for Macleans by a committee appointed by the Western Rugby Union. The Easterners were picked by John DeGruchy, vice-president of the Canadian Rugby Football Union and president of the Ontario Rugby Football Union. Even if there is no possibility of our dream teams meeting, it’s fun.
(|j WE EXPECT that by this time you will have glanced through the pages of this issue in order to see what the surprise is that we promised in our last bit of chit-chat—that is, assuming that anything we do would surprise you. There it is, beginning on page twenty-three, a new pictorial section in rotogravure. This, mark you, is to be a regular feature in Maclean's, and is an addition to our quota of editorial pages. Just as if this wasn’t almost too much to expect for a nickel, our 1935 plans call for even better stories than we have been presenting during 1934.
(jj IN HIS latest book, “In the Steps of the Master,” H. V. Morton tells of his visit to Bethlehem. He writes:
"At the bottom of the road that leads up to this white hill-town is a notice-board which absurdly pins this region to reality: ‘Bethlehem Municipal Boundary,’ it says. ‘Drive Slowly.’
“The traveller, when approaching Bethlehem, pauses in surprise before this board because it has never before occurred to him that Bethlehem could be confined by municipal boundaries.’’
That sign—and it’s a bittering thought that a speeding world has made it necessary—gives another sort of message too.
We have liked to think that one of the Good Things about the Depression was that it compelled people to slacken speed; enabled them to reappraise values.
We do believe that the last two or three Christmases brought happiness to a great many people who were getting rather bored with the sentiment of any day. They had, perhaps, not realized the degree to which want and suffering at all times call for sympathetic service; how heart-warming can be the act of doing something for someone less fortunate. And in the great slowing-up they learned.
(J WE THINK, then, that this Christmas of 1934 will be the happiest one in years for an increased number of grown-ups and little folk. To some because of a betterment of conditions; to others because their fellows have shown good cheer.
Sí &appp Cfjmtmaö:
To all our readers; to those who like us and to those who at times don’t think so much of us. To the authors whose brain-children have lived or died in these pages. To our artists; to our advertisers.
i o our proprietor and managers whc so patiently put up with us; to our staf which has no other choice; to those whc put our contents in type and to press; tc those who dispatch us from end to enc of the Dominion.
To the postmen who feel our weight to those who sell us; to our competitori who do their darndest to outsell us.
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