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(To the Editor). Sir, —The above style and title has been applied to myself by my old friend, Mr Andrew Kinross, and it shows that my shafts of satire have pierced the thick skin of the egotist, and I have received congratulations from many of Mr Kinross’s intimate acquaintances. Mr Kinross knows that when lie writes to a newspaper on questions affecting our social customs he thereby challenges criticism, and as long as the criticism* observes the rules of fair criticism he may administer hard knocks to the criticised. I have observed these rules of fain combat. I made no false or malignant accusations.

Mr Kinross has not observed the rules of fair combat. He has stooped to false accusations, and to tort use of words, viz., “guzzling food.” “Gfuzzling” means swallowing liquors greedily. That cap fits Andrew but not me.

“JJyutal Back-biter.” What is a back-biter ? One who speaks evil of the absent, or writes evil about a person behind a noni-de-plume, which I never do. “Sleeps like a fat hog-.” I plead guilty to that, minus snoring, and I hope I shall always do the same. “Vicious dog—snake in the grass.” No never. No one says that of Buxton. “Came too soon in the Creator’s plan to be a man.” I know nothing at all about the Creator or His plan, and scientists can find no trace of a creator in Nature, but I reckon myself a man for all that. If Mr Kinross doubts it, let him meet me at Pailippi. “Born -without a soul.” Yes, that is so, and I will pay for a bottle of whisky for Andrew if he can prove that he was born with a soul. Toddy is the saving of his soul, and dancing w th women celestial glory. “Lust of gold has been his god.” Right again, Andrew. I caught the golden g'od—■ you grabbed at the same god and missed him, vide your own words : “Though vainly after wealth I strive.” And now you say “ those grapes are sour.” “He’d stoop to meanness or or to stealth.” That’s not true, Andrew. “No poet would waste time upon such a grovelling thing.” No, and if you had been anything hut a poultry poet you would not waste time on me. “No higher aim in life than mingling in ignoble strife-” Why, man, the world is out of joint—there are so many cranks in it that want castigating. “No love could ever reach his heart.” That’s because I don’t wear it on my coatsleeves. “Is puffed up with self-con-ceit.” Oh, dear ! oh, dear ! I wish Andrew hgd not said that. It likens me so much to a namesake of his. “ ’Tis sad that womankind should ever wait on such a hind.” But they do it, and like the job—they know the difference between solid men and nincompoops. Women like men that sleep well and go to bed early, not at three or four in the morning, or stop out all night. “Devoid of honour, taste and mind.” How could I have any of these qualities when you were there before me ? “It would

have been his fittest place, amongst a sensual, savage race, a squaw, or gin the proper mate on such a rnale animal to wait,” That is the unkindest cut of all. But still there is consolation in the thought that somebody is in a far worse case than me. Andrew cannot get even a squaw or a gin to hobnob with him, and so the poor man is continually proclaiming his griefs and sorrows to the world like a disconsolate old tom-cat in his night peregrinations. Yours, etc., T. BUXTON, (To a pig of the flock of Epicurus).

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Bibliographic details

Correspondence. “THE BRUTAL BACK-BITER.”, Southern Cross, Volume 15, Issue 26, 19 October 1907

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Correspondence. “THE BRUTAL BACK-BITER.” Southern Cross, Volume 15, Issue 26, 19 October 1907

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