Another Theory Busted.
A widow who was going to leave th e city held an auction of her household effects recently, and everything went at prompt sale until little but the bedstead was left. Just before this was put up some of the women went to spying around, and discovered that it was infested by bed-bugs. This fact was noised around until it came to the ears of the auctioneer, who mounted his box and said :
“ Words cannot express the poignancy of ray sorrow over the base canard which has been put in circulation in this crowd. I have sold goods jn this town for twenty-nine long years, and this is the first instance in which bugs have been permitted to step between me and the purchasing public. Ladies and gentlemen, if there is a bug in or about that bedstead I want ■to sec him. I cannot and will not believe there is. It would be a slander — a most foul slander —on the character of this worthy widow, who is about to remove to the State of Ohio.”
Being invited to step down and view the bugs for himself, he made an inspection. They were there. They were galloping in and out and up and down, and it was no use to dispute the fact.
“ Ladies and gentlemen,” said the auctioneer, as he resumed his post, “ I found, bugs.. . I, clo.n’t exactly; remember the Latin name for them, but they are there. And now let me talk to you as a friend. Bedbugs were not made for gaudy show, nor were they made for a life of ease. It is a law of nature that they should inhabit bedsteads. They can no more go under the bam and make a living than a dog can become an eagle and float through space. The aversion among you to this insect is founded on false principles. His bite scarcely irritates the sleeper, but it cleanses and purifies the blood. But for the bedbugs of this country we should all have boils and carbuncles. They keep down warts. They cause moles to disappear. Give them a chance and they would remove corns without pain. The great ,” “ Fifty cents !” called an old woman, who remembered that she had a remedy at home.
“ Fifty cents! lam offered 50 cents for a rodol. bedstead, and as I was going to say, the great Napoleon always asked for a bed with bugs in it. lam offered 50 cents, and yet Caesar had his bugs. lam ” “ One dollar.”
“ I am offered one dollar, and yet the poets of Greece immortalised the insects before you. This widow tells me that she has not had an ache or a pain since the first bug made his appearance. How many of you have read what Homer wrote of them ? What was the fountain of Mozart’s Twelfth Mass? And yet I—-” “ Two dollars.”
“And yell hear only two dollars! Do you have headache ? Are you afflicted with giddiness ? Do you have roaring in the ears ?” “ Three dollars !”
“ My friends, let me go home and get my copy of Paradise Lost, and read to you one short chapter. IVhat did Milton ?” “ Four dollars 1”
, “ Ah !” I begin to see that art and culture are not unknown to the audience. Did Alexander the Great have boils ? Never, not a one ! And why ?”
“ Five dollars !” “ I am bid five dollars. I would like to quote one verse from a well-known Latin poet, but time presses, and this bedstead, is sold for five dollars, cash on the nail. I will now direct your cultured attention to that cookstove with a cracked oven.”
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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 240, 12 January 1881
Another Theory Busted. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 240, 12 January 1881
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