OUR SHORT STORY. I THE TEST OF LOVE. I By SYLVIA LONG. "I'm not very good at love-making, but— I'll be good to you, Nan." The man looked steadily Across the table. His eyes were bhre.wz and domiiMnt: his fwe suggested strength. There was tenderness, too, in his eyes as they rested on the womaji. She looked away, and in. the silence that fell between the in the noises of the little ltaliaai restaurant swelled out. At each table a separate group chattered in Italian: or drawled in English, oblivious of any but themselves. Brand had known that there 1 would be more privacy here in the blaze of light and the rasp of voices than in any solitude. He knew that the surroundings were the best ally he could have. Brand was a good business man. He looked steadily at the woman. She was a tense, quivering creature, quiet now before a decision. Her mouth nas mobile and her whole face full of fire. She was a petite woman, with deep eyes r..nd firm-set mouth; a woman, one would say, who had bought hard battles, but who was a little tired, perhaps, to-night. As he watched her, -the look of indecision in her face softened into utter weariness. She roused herbelf to answer his remark. I know it, Hjirvcj she said, with a quiok note of softness in her voice. "And I'm really wanting someone to be good to me. In the shop to-day— "The place is killing you," he interjected in angry masterfulness. "You in a depart- ment with winter coming on—and you know ,what winter is in the citv-" I've got a good position, and I'm lucky to have it." Her head went iip. "It's Beven years since I left the little home and came to town. And I've made good—made good so far as work goes. But—God, the loneli. ne!¡ The man covered her nervous hand with m'i own in a quick caress. She looked down in a detached sort of way at their two hands, but did not take hers away. "You'll never be lonely again. And I can give you .all the things women want out of life—you'll have drosses, motors, and be able to travel—I know those thing6 don't in. fluence you-" "But they do." Nan looked at him witlt wide, honest eyes. "I've told you, Harve, 1;hat I don't really love you—and now I'll tell vou more. I know I never can." She looked far past the noisy group at the next table, far past the dirty wall of the little restaurant, out to the little country home; and a smile, a tender smile with all the tiredness rubbed out, curved her lips into giirlidhness again. "I suppose I might as ■well tell you," she said. "Love comes to every woman once, and my turn came. It was before I ever left the country. One of the boys on the farm—well, there's no use telling VOlt about him—I loved him, but -when he urged me I wouldn't, marry him, for I saw wirat my future wouid be, just grubbing along, and never knowing what real life was. So I told him so, and came here to try my fortune. And he told me to Tememiber, whenever I was ready, there was <a man waiting for nic- And the trouble is I have remembered! Tex, they called him-" "But you were riglvti—you "wouloji t have been happy that wny. Besides, how can you The sure it was love? The woman Qroke in passionately. "That's it! That's what I am always ask- ing myself. How can I know? How can I know for ,,iI re" Isn't there some test? How cain I know what man .it is I love? The man looked at her steadily. "Nan he said, and into his voice had come the low hoarse note that a. woman's heart- strings thrill to. "Nan, you know." She pulled her hand from under his, and Bat up straight, her body vibrant. The quick red came into her cheeks, and her e- .Te.s looked unflinchingly into his with frank honesty. Her voico was quick and passionate. Y,& she said tensely, I know. I know What I've. felt sometimes when we've been dancing together. I know how sometimes the sense of completeness, of wholeness, of oneness, whatever you want to call it, seemed so miraculous that I felt myself go- ing, that I almost lost ontrol of myself, and had to stop, and go out of reach of the music. But I might have felt th-a-t with any man. I know you could make me thrill to your kisses, I know that you could intoxi- cate my heart, perhaps more than any other man I have ever seen. But is that love? I don't know. There ought to be some way of knowing. There ought to be some test! Marrying is 6o much more than a kiss to music. There's something beneath it all, some way to tell for certain—if I only knew What it is." Nan, won't vou take a chance?" ".No. No. I wont take a. chance. When I .give any ma-n that promise it'll be because I know for certain. It'll be because I've found out what the test is." "You respect me, and trust me?" Yes. And you could kib's me and buy my dinners and railway ticketR for the rest of my life. I could talk to you, and enjoy things with you, and go to places with you, but-I don't know wh4:t it is. God knows I'm not domestic, but I want to darn one man's.' socks. And, Harve, I don't think you're that man." "Nan, look here." He took both her hands now, and leaned across the table to look straight into her eyes. "I'm going to make you love me. I'm going to make you sure. I'm going to take care of you-for good. No more lonely evenings in your room, no more Nan wrenched her hamta away, but she could not take her eyes from his. She tried to answer him, to refuse, to fight it out; but suddenly something seemed to snap in her, the resistance went out of her eyes, her shoulders drooped, and her hands went blindly seeking his again. It's not the time when there's hard work to do," she said, "that does us women in. It's when we're tired and lonesome. The gods that made us ought to supply a home wLbh everv one of us. They didn't provide for us old maids." He patted her hands kindly, with the awkward gentleness of a man who means it too much to do it with art. "There, there," he said slowly and soothingly, "it's all right now, it's all right now." Nan leaned towards him with a tender light in her eyes, but just as she started to speak she was interrupted by a street-hoars- ened treble. PaperP At her elbow w,s a ragged little black-eyed child of about five who had been allowed to enter the cafe. He looked at her with a shy smiile and there was something in the motherliness of her answer- ing smile that made the man watching her catch his breath in surprise. Nan's eyes fol- lowed the little newsboy as he made the round of the tables on the left side of the room. and rejoined his mother at the door. She was a bent little woman, with a ker- chief over her head and a sheaf of news- papers under her arm. There was all the pathos of the foreigner in her eye, but they lit up with a smile of pride for the child, and as they went out she passed her hand over his curls in an ashamed caress. After the door closed N aJl sat staring at it with eyes that saw visions. Then she turned slowly back to Brand, shoulders up, her whole body poised and radiant with sureness and strength. Her eyes met his like a self-confident conqueror, not like a tired woman' s, and her voice when she spoke had a triumphant ring. "It's funny what things will change a girl, isn't it? And just what pin-prick it is tha.t starts a reait in the veil-alld how you suddenly know! She flung her handa out in abandon. "It's good to know!" Her voice wae like a prayer. "God it's good to I know!" Then she looked at him with re- membering tenderne-ss. "I'm sorry," she 931d. Then he and his hopes were out of her world again, and he was only a chance confidant for her happiness. She looked at him, and all the tiredness had gone out of her face, and t;he was only very young and girlish and shy. 0 gi When I s&w that mother's eyes," she ex- plained softly, "I knew suddenly what the test was after all. And I knew what the an- swer to the test was for me, too. I Her voice was low with embarrassment, dhe found something hard to say, so she evaded :it, and found relief in a. matter-of-fact state- ment. "I'm going new—no, don't come with me—I'm going now to send a Trirc to Devon. You see," the embarrassment came into her low tone again, and she looked over his shoulder, "you see, some day I want-a little boy that locks like Tex."
SUSPECTED THE KING. When travelling incognito Royalties often have interesting experiences. For instance, King George, when Prince of Wales, went at night to visit a goods yard at cue of the big London railway termini. His Majesty was accompanied by the late Sir Arthur Ellis; both were roughly clad, and presented the appearance of a couple of good-class working men. On this particular night the railway company was engaging some temporary hands to deal with the Christmas good. traffic. There was a group of about thirty men assembled near where the Prince of Wales stood as a railway offi- cial took their names and addresses; the official, when he passed the Prince and his companion, looked sharply at them and said: "You look a likely couple for this job. Where were you last employed ?*' "Oh!" answered the* Prince, laughingly, "both of us are in jobs. We came here only because we expected to see a friend." The official looked suspiciously at them for a few moments, but said nothing, and passed on. He had no idea, of course, of the identity of the two men he had spoken to. He learnt it later from a railway in- spector who knew of the Prince's visit to the yard that night. "Well," said the offi- cial, "I was on the point of turning them out of the yard. I'm glad I didn't now." Since he ascended the throne the King has visited several parts of the East End in disguise, and was once among the audience in the pit of a music-hall in one of the poorest parts of London. On one occasion the King visited, incognito, a big factory some distance from London. He was accompanied by an equerry, and both wore ordinary tweed suits. His Majesty re- turned to London by an express train, and occupied a first-class "smoker." A man who got into conversation with him during the journey said to him at the end of it, "You know, you are uncommonly like the Ki tg," His Majesty laughed and said, I have never been told that before, but per- haps I am."
A VALUABLE QUILT. Many strange actions have been attri- buted to the innocent, but one of the trangest is that which occurred some years ago, ° when an old lady, observing that her Government Bonds were printed on stiff paper, used them to "back up" a quilt she was making The Government, when the time for conversion came round, insisted on having the quilt, in order to pay up; and this case serves well to remind War Bond holders and others to be careful with their scrips. It is common knowledge that shareholders and investors generally have used their share certificates for various purposes-but the most amusing case was that of an un- fortunate holder of a large number of "dud" certificates, which he stuck all over the walls of hie library! His idea was that, being printed in different colours and containing various seals and signatures, they looked quite as pretty as wallpaper; and, as they were wort?les they might as well be stuck on the wall as a lesson to his children not to follow in his footsteps.
OLD SILVER VALUES. The rise in the value of precious metals has been wonderful, and to-day old silver is very valuable, being worth far more than the 5s. 6d. an ounce, which is the bullion price. A Queen Anne milk-jug has been sold for 125 shillings an ounce! It came from an old farmhouse, and its original owners had no idea of its real value. Those perfectly plain silver spoons with a large flat bowl, which are known to experts as Puritan spoons, are worth their weight in gold. A dealer recently offered a man 1250 for the worn old silver sugar basin, the family were using. It was really a seventeenth century porringer, and was worth at least .£80. Apostle spoons are treasured by collectors. Each has a figure of one of the Apostles, with his emblem. St. Peter, for instance holds his key. In olden days they were given as christening gifts. Single specimens, if old, have brought as much aa while £ 100 was paid for a sixteenth century Apostle spoon.
SCHOOLBOY HOWLERS. The "howlers" attributed to scholars of the younger generation are always amusing. Here is a further selection from the latest examination papers. The following answers were given with all sincerity to the questions, which are self- illustrative: B.Sc. stands for Boy Scout. A blizzard is the inside of a hen. The Sublime Porte is a good wine. Bi-monthly means the instalment plan. Adam's ale is the lump 1.% a man's neck. Conscription is what is wr tten on a tomb- stone. A brute is an imperfect beast; man is a perfect beast. In India a man out of a cask may not marry a woman out of another cask. A man who looks on the bright side of things is called an optimist, but a pianist looks on the dark side. An ibex is where you look in the back part of the book when you want to find any- thing that is printed in the front part of the book. But, referring to the pi;" 'st-what about the man who looks "inside ?
HIDING THE TRUTH. Most people are unwilling to admit why they lost a job, and it has fallen to an American to draw up the first authentic list comprising the critical reasons why fifty boys were "fired" from their respective busi- nesses. A music-hall manager dismissed a boy for swearing. "Our disgust and our self-respect forced us to ask him to quit," said the manager. The head of a bookshop sent away a lad who was tco full of ideas, and insisted on trying new systems without his boss's sanction. An assistant in an iron- monger's was sacked because he could think and talk of nothing but chess. Among oth-er reasons for dismissal were unpunctuality, rudeness, dishonesty, giving away the firm's secrets to a rival business, gambling, and cruelty to horses. "He was a good talker when we listened, and a pool listener when we talked," was another ex- planation. A dentist's boy was dismissed for "eating from morning till night." He kept his pockets "crammed with pea-nuts, can- dies, fruits, and such like, often littering the floor with shells, paper-wads, and parings, and exasperating women with his noisy chew ing."
AN ANONYMOUS .£20,000. Manchester Royal Infirmary has received I an anonymous gift of £ 20,000.
I NOTES ON NEWS. I I Tlka Hun still haggles, and so Marshal I Foch has decided to act. Too long has he been held back by our "humane" leaders, I who make us look in the eyes of the German nation more like fools than militarists. Our heavy guns have crossed the Rhine, and un- less the Germans sign the protocol we shall give the order to fire. It is said that when the German delegates to the Peace Confer- ence return to Paris to sigp the protocol and ratification of the Peace Treaty they will ask for the following three concessions: Firstly, that the question of the sinking of the German fleet at Scapa Flow be sub- mitted to a tribunal of the League of Nations. Secondly, the elimination from the protocol to the Treaty of the threaten- ing paragraph which says that the Allies will take coercive measures if Germany fails to carry out the terms of the Treaty. Thirdly, that Germany will be allowed to discuss the technical side of the surrender of the various materials demanded by the Allies. If these concessions aro granted Germany will sign, it is understood, says an American source. If Germany doesn't sign no doubt Marshal Foch will assist the Yankee mind in explaining why they will have to. I Haig of Bemersyde. I I A fund is to be opened to purchase the Scottish estates of Bemersycle. which will form a people's tributo to Earl Haig for his successful leadership of the British Forces on the Western Front. It is pro- posed to purchase the estate of Bemersyde, on the Tweed, with the historic mansion J and contents, from the owner, and to pre- sent them to Earl Haig as the people's per- sonal gift. The property has been valued at JB53.700. Arrangements have been made for contributions to be accepted by every bank throughout the country. Mr. Arthur Walter, Royal Automobile Club, S.W. 1, is the secretary of the movement. Carpentier, the Wizard. I Another dramatic victory falls to Georges Carpentier, who retains the title of Heavy Weight Boxing Champion of Europe, by knocking out Joe Beckett, of Southampton, in 74 seconds. In regard to Carpentier's future, M. Decoin, the manager of the Paris Wonderland," says" Carpcntier will not go to America. It is correct that a group of sportsmen have placed the sum of 4,000,G00frs. (about XIOO,000 at the present rate of exchange) at my disposal; I have telegraphed Dempsey offering him a purse of 2,000,000frs. (about £ 50,000). At present nothing is decided, but an arrangement will doubtless soon he arrived at with my group." If such a contest be arranged, as it probably will be, we shall have a Titanic struggle between two boxers of the "light- ning variety, and the meeting will go down in the history of the Ring as unique. I the Stores Strike. I It is seldom that a strike meets with public approval, but when the assistants) of the Army and Navy Stores came out the public was delighted and amused. And by the Stores directors climbing down within two days the assistants have shown their chiefs that military methods will not go down in civilian and commercial life. Iri accordance with the terms of the settle- ment, the staff of the Stores on strike, about 3,200, returned to work. In this fact the union has won recognition and established the principle of collective bargaining. The demands for a minimum rate for shop as- sistants and allied workers and other points in the union's programme will be submitted to arbitration, and the award will date back to the first pay day in November. This is generally regarded as a very satisfactory settlement from the union's standpoint. It was stated by union officials that they had received an assurance of future recognition of the union from the directors, and the staff council will remain in existence to ad- just any small differences or grievances in the departments. The arbitrator will be ap- pointed by the Ministry of Labour, and the arbitration proceedings are expected to com- menco without delay. Numerous congratu- lations were tendered by sympathetic s hare. holders. I Penalising Patriotism. I As was only to be expected, anothei anomaly is brought to light-this time in connection with the Board of Education, and on account of which great bitterness has been caused among ex-service echooi teachers. The Board of Education has de- cided to exclude from death gratuity undei the School Teachers Superannuation Act oi 1918, such of them as fail to satisfy th< board that, on resuming their scholastic duties, their health is unimpaired by mili- tary service. A London school teacher, whc served as an officer through the war, has re- turned to find that his service may cost him benefit, which the Act of 1918 secures ioi those who did not go. This is too anomalous In the case of teachers whose teaching ser. vice has been unbroken, that fact is being taken aB proof of fitness—even in the cast of .men who were rejected by the Army-but the men who took up arms in defenct of the country and have now returned, are being called before medical boards, and it their medical category is lower than it was when they gave up teaching to go and fight, are told they are not elibible for death gra. tuity. The "soldier teachers" arc doing what they can to help themselves, and th< London Association has obtained a promise that a Bill to amend the Act will be intro- duced. Helping the Workless. I In view of the Government s intention tc get the unemployed insurance fund on a new basis, a reply made by Sir R. Home in Parliament is interesting. He says the total contributions by employers, workers, and the State to the unemployment insurance fund between July, 1912, when the first In- surance Act was passed, and July, 1919, amounted to < £ 20,774,318. The State con- tributed < £ 9,090,442. Benefit paid amounted to £ 1,501,375; cost of administration charge- able to the fund « £ 2,236,396; and the balance was £ 18,216,878. The total cost of adminis- tration was < £ 2,742,920. The balance on December 1, 1919, -was £ 19,075,000. The total numhcr of claims in 1913-14 was £ 1,092,288. I Oreat Trade Revival. I The Board of Trade returns for November show a great increase. The exports were more than double those of the corresponding month of last year, and were higher than in any former month. The value of goods de- spatched from the United Kingdom during the month was X87,110,007, compared with £ 43,218,879, an increase of £ 43,891,128, or more than 100 per cent. Last month's im- ports totalled £ 143,564,907, against £ 116,770,580 in November last year, an in- crease of £ 26,794,327. Every category of ex- ports showed an improvement last month but the largest increases were in the group of articles wholly or mainly manufactured, which showed an advance of £ 33,958,216. Exports of raw materials and articles mainly unmanufactured increased by ES,169,832, the greater part of this rise being in coal, coke, and manufactured fuel, which advanced by £ 5,248,053. Even articles of food, drink, and tobacco exported registered an increase of £ 3,038,774. I British Timber Conference. The Forestry Association contends that every ton of British timber used in national scheme and industries is of immediate ad- vantage to the homeland. In this connection the British Timber Conference, which ex- pected to be fully representative of all branches of the timber industry, should prove interesting material for thought. Although approximately ten million tons of home-grown timber were felled for war pur- poses at prices far below those paid for im- ported wood, there still remains in this country enormous quantities of various hard- woods far superior to the foreign product. One of the main objects of the conference is to develop to the fullest extent the use of this valuable wood, which can be profitably employed in housing and other reconstruc- tional schemes. No real comprehensive effort at the proper organisation of our timber supplies on a commercial basis has ever be- fore been made.
Mrs. King, of Radcliffe, Lanes, returning home from an entertainment, found her sister, Annie Fletcher, kneeling dead beside the bed with a strap drawn tightly round her neck and fastened to the bed.
PENSION PROBLEMS: HOW TO SOLVE THEM. By AN EXPERT. Some Points on Time-Sn,.Ing-A Visit to the Pensions Issue Office-The Position of "Service Patients"—The Naval Prize Fund-Higher Education and Training. FREE ADVICE TO OUR READERS. j Much time and trouble would be saved if II ex-Service men, widows and dependents would provide local Wax Pensions Commit- tees with the following information when consulting them about the pension, gratuity or allowance to which they are entitled: Full name and address; regimental number; regiment frcm which, dis3hax-ed (or regi- ment in which the deceased man was serv- ing); date of discharge; cause of discharge; and date of any previous application. These particulars are absolutely necessary. Atten- I tion to them will help to secure prompt attention to your claim. The other day I was permitted to inspect the Pensions Issue Office at Chelsea, which is a vast hive of industry, where a large number of discharged end disabled men are working side by side with girls who have be- come expert in the work. What struck me was the business-like atmosphere of the place: they all looked intent on their job, and I was pleased to receive the assurance that the office is keeping well abreast of its wc.rk. What interested me most, I think, was the elaborate care with which the re- cords are kept, all the particulars relating to one case being securely contained in one packet. As inquiries relating to this man and that are constantly being dealt with, many of these packets are always on the move, so to speak, going to this authority and to that, to have a point of difficulty cleared up. The contents of these packets are always in process of being checked to ensure that no important paper is missing from them. At the same time, the n-ame of each man, with brief necessary particulars, is to be found neatly typed on a card, which forms an easily accessible index for reference pur- poses. In this section there are experts in hand-writing and so on, who every day have to grapple with illegible letters. That takc-s time, of course, and provides us with a reason why everyone who writes about a pension should take the utmost care to write legibly. It saves time. I saw the whole process of pensions' issue, and I can assure you that it is as good and quick a process as human wit could devise. From what I gathered, most of the staff work, 60 to speak, with their heart as well as their head. As considerable misapprehension, still ap- pears to exist regarding the treatment of ex- Service men suffering from mental derange- ment, I think tliat the following explicit ex- planation will 'be found useful. b For more tha,n two years the Ministry of Pensions has dealt with these unfortunate men under a special scheme of treatment. Every man who, as a result of service during the war, has been awarded a disable- ment pension, and who has been admitted as a patient into a lunatic asylum, is entitled to be placed on the list of private pationts, and treated as a "Service Patient." The cost of maintenance is paid out of the funds administered by the Minister of Pensions, and additional weekly payments are made to cover the cost of the privileges which private patients enjoy, a further sum being paid to the patient as pocket money. Special instructions Were issued request- ing superintendents of asylums to place on the list of Service Patients all ex-soldiers and ex-sailors in their respective institutions entitled to be so classed. Measures are taken to ensure that a man is not retained in the asylum in which he would be kept were he a pauper, if that institution hap- pens to be at a great distance from the place where his wife, family or friends may be living. The reason of this is to secure the happiness and contentment of the patient, and to meet the convenience of his friends, and it is the latter consideration which renders undesirable the gathering together of large numbers of Service patients in one building. If the practical difficulty of acquiring new buildings were overcome, and asylums were established for Service patients alone, it is obvious tha-t even then very few of those patients could receive frequent visits from their friends. The Service patients themselves do not object to mingling with other patients, ] am informed, and usually welcome oppor- tunities of doing so. I briefly touched on this matter in a previous talk I had with you, but, since then I have been enabled to secure the fullest possible particulars relating to the treatment of these sad cases. The Naval Prize Fund, I understand, wil; not begin distribution before next spring The monies due to the fund are being col- lected as rapidly as possible, and are put out at interest when received. It should be noted that no applications out of the rules for State aid for the highei education and training of ex-Service officers and men received after December 31, 1919. will be considered, unless it can be shown that, owing to military reasons, applications could not be made before this date. Candi- dates must apply on or before this date as to whether they are, or are not likely to be, able to begin their training this year. Our Pensions Expert is anxious to assist Bailors and soldiers and their wives and de- pendents in dealing with intricacies of the War Pensions System. Address your queries to "Pensions Ex. pert," c/o Editor of this paper. All essen- tial facts should be stated as briefly" as pos- sible, such as name, number, rank, regi- ment of soldier, name and rating of sailor, particulars of familiea and separation al- lowance and (in inquiries concerning civil liabilities) pre-war or pre-enlistment in- come, present or war income, and full lia- bilities. Do not send any documents, birth certificates, or discharge papers, etc. Will correspondents please make a point of sending their regimental number, rank, name, and regiment? I
BATTLE OF RED TAPE. It is said to have been a battle of red tape to get awav the five Runner ducks and four Light Sussex hens which Mr. H. D. Astley, of Brinsop Court, Hereford, has been trying to send to France since November 19. It has been a battle of forms to get them off. In announcing thl:1r departure Mr. Astlev states that he has been charged -ts. for food during their enforced hold-up at Folkestone.
-8K-=-=8K II THE WAY TO BE STRONG The possession of physical fitness is a more urgent necessity than ever in these times. Health is essential to all who would maintain that high efficiency which is increasingly in demand. Physical fitness and all that the term implies-vigour, energy, activity, a sense of well-being and a capacity for hard work or full enjoyment-.can only be realised if the digestive system is sound and healthy. The way to be strong is so easy that it is astonishing how many people miss it. You have just to keep your digestive system in good order and you will rarely be ailing. It is, therefore, well to remember that, in the great majority of cases, a good digestion can be ensured by the use of Beecham's Pills. This famous medicine will strengthen the stom- ach, promote appetite, stimulate the liver and kidneys, regulate the bowels and purify the blood. All those who value sound and stable health will be well advised to take BEECHAM'S PIUS. j In bcxes, labelled Is-3d and 3s..Qd. .n,, n,
A reduction in the price of all commodi- ties in Canada is confidently expected after another harvest, declared Sir Vincent Mere- dith. the president, at the annual meeting of the Bank of Montreal. 0 Damage to the extent of < £ 20,000 has been done by a fire at the sawmills of Messrs. Johnson and Sons, at Liverpool. There will be extra facilities, but no cheaper fares, on the railways at Christmas. The northern coalminers' ballot in Aus. tralia gives a large majority in favour of a six-hour working day and the abolition of the contract system. At an Ilford whist drive a lady who won the first prize, a bottle of whisky or a pair of silk stockings, after a good deal of hesi- tation, chose the whisky. There are 7,000,000 trade unionists in Germany. I Many American cities are arranging to in- stitute the English custom of carol singing in the streets this Christmas.
CAUSE OF DEAR COTTON. In the House of Commons Mr. Bridgeman said that the high retail prices of cotton and woollen goods are duo mainly to the high price of the raw material and the cost of production. I To reduce the home price as against the foreign price in the same way as had been done with coal would involve the re-estab- lishment of a large measure of control, j which he could not recommend.
From December 1 minimum wage rates for men apply to women engaged in the confectionery and food-preserving trade, and the Trade Board is to consider new rates. Unless something unforeseen happens, the members of the Irish Bank Officials' As- sociation will come out on strike. They demand the recognition of their association.
I OTHER MEN'S MINDS. Lightning strike is the same thing, in a different sphere, as the invasion of Belgium. —Bishop Welldon. OUT WITH 'EM. There will be no room in future agricul- ture for the striker, the bad tenant, or tho bad landlord.—Lord Lee of Fareham. THE PROPOSITION. It is impossible to state at all precisely the extent to which the present cost of necessities is caused by shortage of supply or inflation of currency.—Sir A. Geddes. i TOO EARLY. The new heaven and the new earth have not dawned upon wistful expectant human eyes, or, if they have dawned, the heaven above is as brass, and the earth below is as iron.—Bishop Welldon. CORRECT! The main desire of demobolised soldiers is to be left alone and not exploited either by parsons or politicians.—Archbishop of York. r BEHIND THE SCENES- Diners in marble halls have no idea of the bad conditions in which waiters have to live in the same building.—Mr. W. Oldfield, president of British Waiters' Union. A. SPOON-FED NATION. The country is too much spoon-fed; nationalisation means the throttling of genius, cold-douching of enthusiasm and fctifimg of enterprise.—Sir J. Maclay, Ship- piog Controller. MINING OUTPUT. I would welcome an inquiry as to in- creased output (in mines); time is being lost through the state of the mines and want of transport.—Mr. J. Robertson, M.P., Scottish Miners' president. I THE MORAL LEADERS. Time and again in recent years the House of Lords has taken a lead in moral issues.— Sir Donald Maclean, M.P. A FRUITY FACT. In order to preserve fruit, it has to be kept alive.—Mr. W. B. Hardy (Director. Food Investigation). THOSE LITTLE WARS. There are still some 20 wars going on in different quarters of the globe-Field. Marshal Sir Henry Wilson. MAINTAINING CONFIDENCE. I have always declined to give false esti- mates of a situation in order to beguile the nation into a false hope.—Mr. Lloyd George. BLACKMAIL AND SUICIDE. Blackmail may cause more misery and produce more suicides than any other offence.—Mr. Justice McCardie. NOT UNTAMED. The Labour Party can on longer be looked upon as an untamed group of enthusiasts.— Mr. J. R. Clynes, M.P. A SPONGING EMPIRE. The Empire should no longer sponge on the private resources of its public servants. —Sir Hamar Greenwdod, M.P. BACK TO OUR MUTTONS. I- The shouting has died down, and every. thing is once again as it was before the war.—Duke of Sutherland (on ex-soldiers), A RUDE AWAKENING. If the lessons of this war have fallen on deaf ears they will be taught again by louder cannon.—Mr. J. W. Davie (U.S. Am- bassador). PAINFUL PANELS. During the past few days information has come to me testifying to the most painful way some panel doctors carry out their duties.—Mr. Handel Booth. LIFELONG INFLUENCE. Canada will influence my whole life.- Prince of Wales. POOR OLD EUCLID. Euclid becomes incorrect when applied to existing realities.—Sir Oliver Lodge. MISSIONARY SERVICE. I know of no human service more nobli than missionary work.—Mrs. Lloyd George. BUILDING AND TUBERCULOSIS. I Delay in building operations, owing to the II war. has resulted in a marked spread of I tuberculosis.—Dr. Nathan Law. PRECOCIOUS YOUTHS. I Small boys in Bethnal Green are not em. ploved-thev are employers, somëtimes pay- ing assistants.—Rev. Stewart Headlam. ANOTHER REASON. Present high prices are due to the Govern- ment's lack of courage in dealing with the munition workers.—Sir Herbert Nield, M.P. I UP AGAIN. In a very short space of time Germany will arise, Phoenix-like, from the ashes of her past commerical greatness.—Mr. Julius M. Price. MEETING HIMSELF. It is like old times to be introduced as Mr. F. E. Smith," a name, I confess, to which I have learned to grow attached.— Lord Birkenhead. LOOK UP JOB. I If our temporal pastors and masters want to realise the temper that inspires to-day's I unrest, they might do worse than overhaul I the Book of Job.—Judge Parry. WHERE PLUCK'S WANTED. 1 A man requires an extraordinary amount of faith and pluck to enter the Ministry of the Church in these days.-Rev. G. A. Hazlehurst (C'rcmford, Derby). LET'S GO BACK! I Cost of living will never be brought back to a reasonable figure until a return has been made to the good old style of compe- tition.—Sir Joseph Maclay (Shipping Con- troller).
Sir Woodman Burbidge, managing direc. tor of Harrods, Limited, and Lady Bur- bidge, who have just returned from Southern and Central America, received a welcome from 5,000 of Harrod's staff, who presented tokens of their regard. A Barnslev landlord, Frank Rowley, of the Mons Arms, fined -63 and coste for not exhibiting Liquor Control Board notices on selling prices, said customers had torn up the notices to light their pipes with. Mr. "Pussyfoot" Johnson, after the re- moval of his eye, which was injured in the students' "rag," has left the nursing home for the country, where he will stay some weeks with a friend.
OUR LONDON LETTER. I [From Our Spwial Correspondent.] I London. In the course of his long address to the members of the Manchester Reform Club, Mr. Lloyd George asked them to considef what alternatives existed to the present Coalition. He has doubtless noticed m cer- tain quarters the prophecy that we are shortly to have another General Election. Mr. Arthur Henderson is supposed to believe that such an event may come about as early as next spring. The Prime Minister, there- fore, pointed out that no single party now in opposition could expect to obtain a clear majority and form a Government. From that it follows that each party has to con- sider with what other party is can coalesce. Is there any reason, he asked, why the best slements in the Liberal Party should not work with the best elements in the Unionist Party, where there is agreement. His chal- lenge was obviously directed to the Liberals Dutside the Coalition. They are at the cross- roads; they must turn to the right or to the left. I IHE TURN TO THE LEFT. I Many people believe that the Liberals should combine with Labour rather than with the Unionists. The difficulty is that the Labour Party possess two winge, one of which contains a number of moderate men who could be quite safely entrusted with the administration of departments, while the other wing consists of the friends of dis- order, strikes, restriction of output, direct action, and even sedition. The line of demarcation between the two Labour sec- tions is marked plainly enough for all to see. It is not one Party, but two. Some of the sanest of the Labour Leaders—Mr. George Barnes for one—are helping the Government in its reform programme. Mr. Clynes and Mr. O'Grady are rendering ser- vices to their country, although remaining outside the Coalition. But there are others who have no desire to construct, but have only plans of disruption. Until the Labour Party stands unitedly for a practical pro- gramme acceptable- to the nation and for strictly constitutional methods, no Coalition with that Party is possible for either Mr. Lloyd George or Mir: Bonar Law, nor can a combination; with) that Party be undertaken, until that happens, by Mr. Asquith, by Lord Robert Cecil, or by any other states- man who may eontemplate the replacing of the existing regime by an alternative. I I THE HEALTH OF THB CHILD. I We are getting on. Anyone who reads the report just published by Sir George New- man, Chief Medical Officer of the Board of Education, will be convinced that a sub- stantial advance has been made in our plans for improving the physique of children. Local authorities are now not merely mabled to look after the health of boys and girls in elementary schools; they are com- pelled. Thanks to the New Education Act, the opportunity is transformed into a duty. School clinics have been nearly doubled, if we compare the present number with that of pre-war days-600 ae against 350. There are more open-air classes; there is an increase in the number of schools for defective chil- dren: better arrangements are established for co-operation with the hospitals. I FURTHER REFORMS NEEDED. I At the same time. the reader of Sir George Newman's report will agree with him that something more remains to be done. More than ten thousand children are still under the Poor Law, and it is to be hoped that Parliament, in its long series of J reconstruction measures. will find a means of reducing that deplorable total. The methods of treatment of sick children will, moreover, have to be brought nearer to the standard of perfection, and cases require to be "followed up" more systematically. The one cause for satisfaction to the present generation is that, great as are the tasks ahead of us, there is evidence that the Board of Education and the new Ministry of Health will grapple with them strenuously and successfully. Apathy haa been killed by the war; a new conception has arisen of the value of child life to the nation. SFEN VALLEY- I From the point of view of Party politics, the by-election in the Spen Valley is the most exciting of all the series that we have had in 1919. The prospects of the three candidates are being studied with great in- terest in London, and the result cannot be- foretold with the confidence that was pos- sible in the case at Plymouth. Colonel Fairfax is receiving strong support from ,outside. Speeches on his behalf are made by members of the Government, like Sir Hamar Greenwood, by Mrs. Lloyd George, and by Lady Astor. A dozen issues are raised in the by-election, Lut the Coalition- ists who are throwing their energies into the fight concentrate, for the most part, on one issue only—the need for national unity. LABOUR'S GENERAL STAFF. I In some ways the most interesting event of the present week is the Labour Party's scheme for the creation of what may be termed a Headquarter's Staff. The railway strike revealed the fact that of all the orga- nisations that existed in connection with the Labour movement not one was capable of dealing with such an emergency effi- ciently. The Labour Party in Parliament had to attend to its House of Commons duties and had no authority to act in an in- dustrial dispute. The Trade Union Congress had a Parliamentary Committee, but its powers were limited and its members scat- tered. Thus the necessity arose for a Trade Union Congress General Council as central administrative machinery capable of con- trolling industrial activities and equipped with departments for research," legal advice, and propaganda. THE OBJECT AIMED AT. ) I This opens up a question important for all of us. Is the General Staff to aim at cloth- ing the Labour Party with increased re- sponsibility, at making Labour's influence in Parliament more reliable and sensible? -If so, the country may well regard the new move as not only legitimate, but helpful in the solving of social problems. Can it. however, be the intention of the promoters of this change to use the General Staff for "direct action?" Do they desire to be in a better position to use the strike threat and thus to intimidate employers and also the State more effectively? In that case, we are confronted with .i serious extension, of the power of "the extremists whose prefer- ence for unconstitutional methods threatens the peace of the country and may prove a curse to the Labour movement itself.
The memorial to Major "Willie" Redmond in his native town of Wexford is to take the form of a public park, in which a mc,-n.- ment will be erected. When the question of the relations be- tween France and the Vatican comes before the French Chamber of Deputies, a resolu- tion in favour of the re-establishment of relations, it is believed, will be passed. "V To take home to U.S.A. the remains of five American sailors who were buried at Queenstown in war time, the yacht Yank- ton has arrived at that port. Sparks from a chestnut vendor's stove set fire to the clothing of Eleanor Ogdurn, four, of Spitalfields, who was playing near the etove, and she was fatally burned.
FUN AND FANCY. Holdup: "Can't you help a poor, lonely man who hasn't got anything in the world except this loaded revolver?" Teacher: "What is the derivation of the word 'lunatic'?" Pupil: "Luna, the moon, llld-err-attic, the upper storey." "I feel very uneasy; it's pouring with :ain, and rav wife went out without an imbrella." "No doubt she'll take refuge in 1 shop somewhere." "Yes; that's just what's worrying me so." "Yes, I heard a noise and got up, and rhere under the bed I saw a man's leg." 'Mercy! The burglar's!" "No; my hus- Dand's. He had heard the noise, too." Flo: "I've had to discharge my nurse for the most horrible cruelty." Elsie: "What irl she do?" Flo: "Kicked my poor dear little Fido for biting the baby." Dan: "You eay young Brown was trying to borrow monev from you? Why, I heard that onlv recently he fell into a fortune!" Ick: "That ,c, so," but he fell into it so hard that he went right through it." Banks: "He says the world owee him a living." Shanks: "That may be all right, but what I object to is the way he tries to :ollect it from his friends." "Yes," said the prince who married Cin- derella, "my wife has the smallest foot in the kingdom." "How nice!" sighed an ad- miring courtier. "But she can put it down as hard as anybody," added the prince. Mabel (on the emigration liner): "Did you observe the great appetite of that stout man at dinner?" Geoffrey: "Yes, he must be what they call a stowaway." ^'Shall I go over your face again, eir? asked the barber. I don't mind your go- ing over it," replied the unhappy man in the chair, but please don't go under the skin like you did the first time. Visitor: "Confound it, sir; I've just been stung by one of your infernal bees! What are you going to do about it?" Beekeeper: If you'll show me which bee it was, sir, I'll punish the horrid thing severely Brown: "Now money is really amino. consideration." Nocash: "With me it's » minus consideration." Mama," queried little Mary Ellen, "is the pen mightier than the sword?" "Of course it is," replied the wise mother. "Your pa couldn't sign cheques with a 6word." "Why does Miss Screecher close her eyes when she sings? "Perhaps she has a ten- der heart." "I don't quite understand." Mavbe she can't bear to see how we Buffer. Angler (to rustic): "Is this public water, mv lad?" Rustic: Yes, sir." Angler: rtVrhen it wili be no crime if I land a fish?" Rustic: "No, sir. but it will be a miracle." Prize-fighter (entering school with his son): "You give this boy o' mine a thrash- tin' yesterday, didn't yer? Schoolmaster (very nervous): Well, I—er—perhaps Prize-fighter: "Well, give us your 'and; you're a champion! L can't do nuthin' with 'im myself." William: "Is he one of your close rela- tions? Joseph: "He is. I've never been able to borrow a farthing from him." Tanglefoot: "Oh, isn't this waltz divine?" Miss Smilax: "Well, perhaps it is divine, but it happens to be a two-step instead of a waltz, and the sooner your feet are ac- quainted with the fact the better we are likely to get along." He (fervently): I would go through any- thing with you." She (sweetly): "Weu., let's begin with your bank book." Wife (with newspaper): "It says here that men grow bald because of the intense activity of their brains." Husband: Ex- actly. And women have no whiskers be- cause of the intense activity of their chins." Did your late employer give you a testi- monial?" "Yes, but it doesn't seem to be any good." "What did he say?" "He said I was one of the best men his finpi ever turned out." Wife in London (over the wireless tele- phone in 1950, to husband who owns an aeroplane,): "Dinner's nearly ready." "I'll be home in lots of time, dear; just leaving Newfoundland." "Ali right; but don't stop too long in Dublin or the joint wiU be spoilt." Old Gentleman (bald-headed but warm- hearted): "Don't cry. Willie' Grandpa will play Indians with you." Small Bov: "B-but you won't do! Y-you're scalped already! "Young man, I want my gas turned off. "This isn't the gas company: this is the water office." "Well, turn off the water—I haven't time to come all this way for no- thing." And why did you insist upon standing by Miss Smith all through the reception? I know you don't like her." "Of course I don't. Didn't you notice how mv new frock made hers look oid and shabby?