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❖ (From the Ashbmion Herald, February 7.) “I am not yet so bald that you can see my brains. Longfellow. I do not intend, if I can help it, to shuffle off this mortal coil at present; but when I feel my time has come, it is my intention to perform the last act in the drama of life somewhere else than in Ashburton. Seems to me there is too much of a necessity altogether for professional butchering; and as it is not a pleasant prospect for a man to have -■•’Joining up before him that he candepart in peace without a narrow of being cut up previous to internment, no matter whether ho dies of consumption, or gets spilt off a horse, it is Chispa’s intention to clear out before Bob Sawyer tries his skill on yours obediently with a view to learning anatomy and putting the usual L2 2s. fee in the coroner’s breeches pocket. If a man dies suddenly in this very Christian township or district, his sorrowing relatives have three reasons for being highly satisfied. A post mortem examination will freshen up some medico’s knowledge of the human mechanism, and elicit an answer to the question one so often hears at a wake—“ "Why did he die ?”—a very intelligent jury will have an opportunity of listening to language only to bo found in ponderous books on medical science, and of course understanding that language without reference to a dictionary of terms —and medical and coroner’s fees will be paid. The reporters will run out a few inches or a few columns of highly instructive reading in the shape of evidence, winding up with a meaningless verdict, and possibly a practically useless rider, forgotten as soon as written, and that is all. The leading luminary of legal lore is not beyond criticism, so far as his consistency is concerned. A few weeks ago there was a case before the Court—Shearman v. Knight—in which Mr. Branson appeared as counsel for plaintiff, and was incontinently turned out on a professional etiquette point. He was very wroth thereat, and took the opportunity of announcing that he did not appear so much on behalf of his client as he did to defend that noble army of martyrs the Licensed Victuallers as a body, whose legal adviser he was. Cliispa on that occasion felt for him, and sympathised for the poor man when not allowed to defend his friends. But when “ Ohispa ” heard the same eloquence used in defence of the sly grog business yesterday he was slightly taken aback at the inconsistency of this man of law. The defence set up that certain leaves rolled up to represent mild Havannas were reasonable at 6d. each was too much for the Bench, and Mr. Guinness wasn’t far out when he considered the beer was in important consideration in such a sale. The great muff cricket match was a grand affair (for the Christchurch players.) Ashburton was a confounded sight too honest altogether, and the metropolitan mufis (?) had them cheap. As muffs the Ashburton boys were perfect, for they muffed the concern throughout. The promoter of the whole business commenced the day’s proceeding by getting up five minutes too late, and his wild endeavors to stop the train must have caused him a considerable loss of breath : but he got to the cricket ground before everything was over and the lunch purveyor had thoughtfully reserved a ham and a sirloin of beef to assist the late but not yet deceased one in sustaining exhausted nature; and I am glad to say that he has not suffered to any extreme extent. The press was numerously if not ably represented, and no less tlMi four Fourth Estate men turned up fi An • village, and were all equally bad asflPßktists. The “ Times ” man showed the best, and it was a toss up between the “Herald” and the “Mail” which was the worst. I would advise the rowdy people of Rakaia to take care. I suppose Rakaia has a share of rowdy people, as well as all other civilised countries. But Rakaia ’ has a special reason to take care, for Trooper Rouse has got located there. He » a quiet, mild, inoffensive looking man is Rouse ; but hit him, and—well, I did it once. I regretted it, for reasons I needn't give. But he is a smart fellow is Rouse. He had a man to hunt for at Chertsey who was wanted up North, and our trooper had only the official description to go by. Scene —Chertsey Enter Rouse ; enter also a country-looking man. Rouse (soliloquising)—“ That’s the description ; I’ll try.” Innocently to countryman—- “ Good morning, Dawson. ” Poor Dawson was caught on the hop : he answered to his own name, and brave Trooper Rouse with a feather in his cap walked off an alleged wife deserter. Someone or other says a live lion is better than a dead dog. If anyone wants proof of this he had better walk up that road past the site recently occupied by Chiarini’s circus. If he can think of anything worse than the smell of the dead dog he will there pass, may you never hear again from b Ohispa.

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Bibliographic details

Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 59, 10 February 1880

Word Count

CHISPA’S LETTER. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 59, 10 February 1880