(From the Ashburton Herald, December 6.) “ I am not yet so bald that you can see my brains. ” — Long fellow.
The imposition of new duties by Parliament this session has had a most alarming effect on my grocer’s bill ; and as I was under the impression, from reading your Wellington reports, that tobacco was the only item that 'had a dead set made at it, by our legislators—(Mr. E. Gr. Wright don’t smoko) —I was a little put out, when buying provender for the week to find that every article I wanted had risen on account of the tariff. What was more incomprehensible than anything else was the information I got from the fussy purveyor that Moffat’s flour had also risen in price, on account of the “ rise in the duties, you know'and the information was given with such a childlike and bland smile that I felt compelled to swallow - it.
Those County Council buildings are going to be made safe against intrusion on the part of the common herd. A post and rail fence is good enough to make most places secure, but the Council’s buildings are of so sacred a nature that although the house only cost some L 350, it requires a L4OO fence to enclose it. The County when they start to spend money, don’t stick at a pound or two, but this fence is a little too thick, I think. And just in front of these buildings there is a Borough Council job—the plantation in Baring Square. It was intended to be a pattern to horticultnralists, by which they could see the wisdom displayed by the city fathers in the selection of ornamental shrubbery plants, and thereby would he inculcated a taste in young gardeners which would be pleasing in the extreme. However, Baring Square is at present only tenanted by the monotonous pinua insignis, and a splendid crop of weeds, which threaten to exterminate the pines. Perhaps it would be as well for the unit, representing the available manual labor at the service of the Borough, to follow the instructions given at last meeting and do a bit of wood picking.
The Government are going in for reductions and economy in all directions. The most trifling case of waste or extravagance is at once pounced upon, and the expenditure reduced to the lowest remunerative prices. The latest saving they have effected is in the direction of gum on the post and duty stamps—(such is the evidence given in a case hoard in Christchurch yesterday)—and it is a saving which cuts both ways ; because, if one of the new stamps is stuck on a document, and the gum isn’t strong enough to keep it there, why, it is necessary to buy another one, and the Stamp Act revenue is doubled at once, besides the saving in gum. It Is an ingenious dodge; because nobody
buys stamps except those with plenty of money, so that it becomes a sort of indirect tax on capital. Clever Johnny Oritork. Cadging for advertisements is quite a science ; the following letter which was received by a tradesman in town (the names only being altered) shows what an advantage a man who combines scripture with business possesses ever an ordinary mortal : “ Nov. 15, 1879. “ Sir, —I am agent for the “ Cloudy Leader,” which is puhlishedsunultaneously at Bullcloudy and Meltem. If you will have a part of your advertisement inserted in that paper. It is an 8-page paper, containing a large amount of reading,, so is much read in many districts by.just the class of people who are sure to try your articles. I shall not speak in praise of it, the proof of the pudding is the eating of it, but if I did not believe very many would try it I would not say so. No—not for the paltry little sum I should get by your advertising—that would not compensate fordoing wrong—wo must bear'in'mind that all we do or say, that one day we must all stand before a Judge (yes, the Judge) if you wish it inserted I will do it at 60s a year, payable quarterly, but not in advance. Take my advice and try it: depend upon it, you wont regret spending los a quarter. “Let me have an answer by return of post, so as if you wish to do so, it may appear in our next issue, and let me have the advertisement signed.” As the writer didn’t sign the letter himself our fellow townsman took it for a hoax, but a few days afterwards the following arrived ; 28th Nov., 1879. “ Dear Sir, —Kindly lec me have an answer tu my letter of 15th ulto., and oblige yours truly, W. F. TISIDERXiUTCHBK. P.S.—I know you : would lind it beneficial to you, to have your advertisement inserted, if people don’t sow seed in their ground they can’t expect a crop, but as a rule if they do, they gather one.” It is perhaps superfluous to remark that the columnsof the “Cloudy Leader” stillappear without the coveted advertisement. The Brass Band has been giving con siderably more satisfaction to the music loving portion of our community lately.— They don’t practice so often. Chispa.
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