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The Sick Room
THE newspaper pages are filled with tides of vigorous life. Advertisers exploit their goods, theatres display their attractions, there are the activities of crime, of politics, of sport; the virile stream of humanity leaps and sparkles beneath the reader's eye.
Up Against It
IT is a terse Americanism, and expresses in solid, idiomatic language a solid, bitter fact: Up Against It.
The Kitchen
IF I ever get money enough to build a house of my own the first thing I shall construct will be the kitchen.
Superfluous Energy
The earth is a mere point in space, and receives no more than one 2,200,000,000th of the radiant energy the sun is outpouring so lavishly. Yet from this almost infinitesimal fraction of the sun's total radiation practically all known forces on earth are due.
Why Was I Born?
THERE is one question upon the answer to which rests the success or failure of life. It is the question: Why was I born?
The Outpopulating Power
THERE is a war constantly going on. It is not of axe upon helm, shot upon armor plate, duels of death-spitting dreadnoughts, nor airplanes dropping bombs upon a sleeping city.
Intelligent Optimism
THERE is an intelligent optimism, and there are several varieties of fool optimism.
The Scrap Pile
The idle wealthy are going on the scrap pile voluntarily. They are not only useless but harmful. Somebody ought to wake them up and make them think.
AISCHROLATREIA is a word used by Frederic Harrison, and his definition of it is the worship of the ugly, the nasty, and the brutal.
The Mirth Cure
Thus was he cured, and arose and went about his business; and thus also may you be cured, if so be that there is still left unparalyzed in you the power to THINK.
Discraded Things
The first thing the physician prescribes usually is a physic. No matter what ails the patient if hardly ever can be a mistake to see that the body is well rid of its waste. If the organs of excretion go on a strike it is fatal.
The Baptism
Clarice wanted the baby baptized. No priest or minister could be found on the island.
The Cry Of The Weary
I STOOD at one of the gates of the city where the human stream pours out to take the suburban trains. It was evening in the sky, it was evening in the faces around me, it was evening in my heart. The grimness, tenseness, mercilessness of the strife came home to me.
The Friend
If you can live fifty years and find one absolute friend you are fortunate. For of the thousands of human creatures that crawl the earth, few are such stuff as friends are made of.
The Stairway
IN the house of life is a great stairway that runs from the cellar to the roof.
The Cage
A GIRAFFE in the Paris Zoo has broken his head against the bars of his cage. What ailed the beast? For seventeen years he has had plenty of fodder and drink, an attendant in uniform and gold lace to wait on him, and the privilege of making the crowd gape. It was a career each of us is dying for. It would seem that Mr. Giraffe was hard to please.
The Blessing
IN the days of our youth the family never sat down to the table without the blessing. All heads would be bowed, and all the clatter of child-voices would hush, while father would say: For what we are about to receive, O Lord, make us truly grateful. Amen.
The City And Privacy
The city means the revolt of the soul of man against moral dictation. Of course, wicked people have always resented moral tyranny. Now the good people are beginning to resent it too. So the country is squeezing out its best and its worst into the cities.
A Wealthy Man
I have received a remarkable letter. It is so significant that I am going to give the greater part of it, amended a bit, to my readers. Here is a man, it seems to me, who has got himself on the right side of the universe. He is so rich he makes me ashamed of my poverty.
The Fireplace
IN the modern dwelling the fireplace has disappeared, the steam radiator has been substituted. The change is not without significance to the spirits of men. The fire on the hearth was the symbol of THE FAMILY. It was the original al-tar, the centre about which gathered the first human institution.
The Sand Pile
SOME men the other day came around and dumped about forty wagon loads of sand in the street at our corner. They are going to use it in repaving the street; but meanwhile it is being put to a far better use.
We must learn as a people to love good music, or we shall perish of sheer cheapness and shallowness of soul.
No Need Of Charm
No need of charm ! How many a foolish little brain, devoid of understanding, has ship-wrecked things by this unreason!
The Practice Of Greatness By Words
You will feel that you are, deep in your hidden life, great and strong and wonderful. For who can think such thoughts and be wholly little and contemptible?
What We Can Never Know
No one is so consummate an ass as the one who thinks he knows it all.
An No One Shall Work For Money
That is plain human nature. And I believe all men will do more and better work when they shall work because it is fun to them, and when not to work will only mean the contempt of their fellows.
The School Yard
No institution for the inculcation of the sense of humanity has ever been devised that is better than the United States public school yard.
The Curse Of Poverty
Every bodily disease is due to bodily poverty: of the blood, of nutrition, of elimination, of coordination.
What Is Best?
WHAT is the best? We all agree we should strive for it, but what is it? Christians say the answer is found in the Bible, Mahometans in the Koran, some say it is in the theories of Herbert Spencer, others of Descartes.
A Christmas Card
MY DEAR FRIEND—Christmas is coming, the great human festival. It is making me realize as it approaches that the best possessions I have been able to get from life are my friendships.
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