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The craftsman
Volume XXXI, Number 3 (December 1916)

Jakobi, Paula
The lecture: a story,   pp. 254-257 PDF (1.1 MB)


Page 254


THE LECTURE: A STORY: BY PAULA JAKOBI
OUSINES and more limousines.
  Why is the street blocked with limousines-this
reet full of men's clubs?
  Is the perpetual candidate breakfasting at the
[arvard Club?
  Is the President of the Borough of Manhattan re-
              ceiving the Street Cleaning Department from the City
              Club?
   Or are the Immortals holding a convention at the New Century
Club?
   No. The limousines which block the street are filled with women.
   It is early. Only ten o'clock in the morning and the women surge
from their cars. They are besieging the entrance to a great theater.
   Oh, for the days of the scalper. Is it too late?
   There is no one at the window of the box-office.
   Alone, the stranger hurries to secure a ticket for the play.
   Just a frivolous ticket for a play.
   Why is there so great a crowd standing about the closed doors?
   Is there a censored play to be produced for the 6lite?
   Or can it be a meeting of fashionable pickets?
   No, it is only a lecture.
   Then why do they push so about the closed doors?
   Is the lecture not announced for an hour later?
   It is extraordinary. Why do they push so?
   Women. Groups of women, crowds of women, throngs of women.
   Creatures with delicate tastes. Pushing, crowding, elbowing.
   And perfumed. Jicky, sandal, orris and musk, apres l'ondg.
   And voices. Voices nasal, coarse voices and many high pitched.
   Furs. Sable, fox-blue and silver, baby lamb.
   Seal, more sable. And pearls.
   Chatelaine bags of cut steel and of gold.
   Women. Groups of women, crowds of women, throngs of women.
   To hear a lecture !
   In huge semi-circle they press around closed doors.
   The kind lady at the door beseeches them not to push, not to hurry.
   In soothing tones she tells them there are seats for all.
   Furthermore that it is not ladylike to push.
   But if pushed ahead then shove the offender back.
   A door is open. Bing!
   A football scrimmage is nothing to it.
   Into the darkened theater they rush.
254


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