The Charlotte News
Monday, July 29, 1940
Site Ed. Note: Once anon, 'twas an Octobernacht in dark fall leaves, we wrote of a waitress in fiction fair: "What'll it be, Mr. Cash?" said she. And he responded. Funny how fiction can be, especially when then we had not read this day's non-fiction, you see. And there's more to it than that, but another day... The mind? The spirit? Science? Into it or Empire I see? Who can say? One can only hold to the evidence of things not seen--which is not to say that we can not see… See?
And, by the by, what is a Nazi? A National Sozialist? An arm-band wearing, boot-kicking, goosestepping, self-anointed Aryan white-trash racist? A particle-adoring I-god unto themselves and answerable only to themselves and to themselves only? Certainly that, but is that all? What about that individual or group of them who, being so bent on convincing all that he or she or they see the future, and alas the past, as it is and was and know its immutable and delimited, finite design by heart such that to fail in the literal fulfillment of that prediction, that loathesome prophecy of which they speak or sing or pray, would be to fail as a person, nay a race, and thus, of necessity, why, after all, to fail fate; and fate must not be questioned, my dear, que sera, yes-no?, strength through joy, tomorrow belongs to us, O Fortuna, huh-huh? Oh, is that not it, the heart of it in fact, too? Ah well, the wheel and questions...
The Challenge Is Flung--Ventilation and Comfort
In years to come--it takes history to comprehend real genius--there may be an imposing monument smack in Independence Square. It will show, probably, two male figures in purest marble, one abject fellow completely attired even to coat, collar and tie; the other, in heroic proportions, clothed comfortably in slacks and an open shirt.
The plaque on this monument should read--
To the Great Emancipators
Tom Fesperman and The Charlotte News
who did boldly and with rare wit
show the adult males
how to dress in
Unless we mistake, Tommy and The News yesterday began to roll up a snowball which will go places. It was a call to freedom, and it must awaken a response in the breast of every man who has suffered from the bindings around his shoulders, the thicknesses around his throat and middle, where all sorts of garments come together.
Ventilation--that is the password. Air! Let the body breathe. Comfort without sacrificing appearance or dignity. A new Old Southern Custom.
Arise, ye timid men, and ungird! It's a crusade for health, ease and freedom, and the call is for pioneers.
Born Too Late
Time Has Got Out of Step With Two in The News
Out in Los Angeles a match in rugged individualism has been found for that British farmer whose story was in the papers the other day--the fellow who hadn't left his farmstead in 50 years, who resolutely refused to obey war regulations regarding the use of idle lands for producing foodstuffs, fired upon officers at their appearance and was finally killed.
He is H. S. Mace, a 48-year-old truck gardener of Artesia, a Los Angeles suburb. And he is in jail because he refused to answer census questions about his income, home ownership, etc. These questions, he said, were too personal.
Both men are interesting mainly as relics from the past. The food production regulations in Great Britain were quite impersonal and were designed only to insure the welfare of the community, including the dead farmer himself, against a determined enemy. Just as impersonal were the subsequent census questions, which were designed simply to gather statistics which, in a complex age are necessary to the welfare of the community, including the truck farmer.
But the minds of both men belong to a time when society was simple, when men finding themselves almost completely self-sufficient, jealously denied the right of the community to interfere with them in anything short of murder or highway robbery, approached everything in strictly personal terms.
The British farmer would have been happy in Eighteenth century England. And Mace would have enjoyed being a coon-hunting farmer in the back country of America in the time of Andrew Jackson. Living in these times, they get hurt. It seems a pity. But, since there is no way to halt the marching of the sun through the years, there seems to be no help for it.
P. T. Amended
Texas Proves Barnum Didn't Know the Half of It
The re-election of W. Lee (Pass the Biscuits, Pappy) O'Daniel as Governor of Texas is a curious phenomenon of American politics.
When the former flour salesman ran for the office and was elected two years ago, he promised to usher in the millennium without delay. All the older people of Texas were to live in clover from funds raised by a solidified version of the Townsend universal sales tax plan. And all the younger people were to roll in wealth created by the rapid turnover of the cash.
In the showdown, however, Pappy failed utterly to come through. In his message to the Texas Legislature he made only some vague noises about the needs of the old, failed to recommend the enactment of the scheme he had campaigned for, in fact failed to recommend any scheme at all for raising the money for the pensions he had promised.
The Texas Legislature scratched its head, sat around a long time looking at the case, and finally went home without doing anything beyond making a few propitiatory gestures.
You'd think that after such a dismal flop as that even the suckers would have been disillusioned. But not so. Pappy ran again, laid all the blame on the Legislature, and repeated his promises, though this time much more vaguely, while his hillbilly band screeched out its new theme song, "There Ain't Gonna Be No Runoff."
Apparently, it proves that Barnum was wrong. Apparently, you can fool at least the majority of the people all the time, if you carry a hillbilly band with you.
Despite Gloomy Prophecies, He Gets What He Wanted
Apparently Mr. Hull succeeded in working a miracle at Havana and pulling victory out of defeat. All through the last week it looked as though plans for the Pan-American conference were certain to end in failure.
Argentina would have nothing to do with schemes for taking French and British possessions over, under joint control of all the American countries, in case England fell.
But the so-called "compromise" reached in the "Act of Havana," to which Argentina has already agreed in committee, achieves all the objectives Mr. Hull started out to reach. It gives any American republic--which is to say the United States--the right to act in emergency without waiting for conferences. And it provides that the control over the possessions shall be exercised by a committee representing every one of the American nations.
The compromise consists merely in agreeing that if any of the possessions are judged capable of self-government, they shall have it. Mr. Hull never objected to that in the first place. The important thing is that the American nations have been brought to the setting up of a solid front against Mr. Hitler's ambitions.
The fact that Hitler no longer seems so certain to defeat England may have had something to do with Argentina's change of heart. Heavy pressure from other Latin-American countries certainly had a good deal to do with it. But ultimately the success of the meet is to be set down to the credit of Mr. Hull. Pessimists insisted that the thing couldn't be done. He thought differently and has proved himself to be right.
It's An Art
A Few Pent-Up Remarks On the Trade of Serving
A school for waitresses--now, there's a pip of an idea. One starts in Charlotte next week.
The first lesson should begin by having every enrolled pupil seated at a table. Somebody dashes up, bangs down a menu and with pad and pencil poised, barks, "What'll you have?"
Now, plainly, they won't know what they'll have until they look over the situation a bit. Sometimes there is a choice between cold plate and good hot roast beef sandwich. One's stomach, being an interested party, needs to be consulted.
And so these waitresses will have learned by experience a cardinal principle of service. Give him a little time, sister, give him a little time.
Perhaps it would be well to tackle next, frankly and without prudery, the age-old problem of sex. Now it may be that some men come into restaurants with an appetite for flirtation or even on the lookout for a date. But most repair to such establishments first and last to eat.
Until the lady knows the gentleman's intentions it were more becoming to approach the business in hand in a direct manner instead of siding coyly up into it. After coffee, perhaps a little conversation may be not unwelcome.
But until the animal is fed, treat him as a patron, not a prospect. Bigger tips have been got by service than by smirks.
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