Tuesday, July 11, 2017

"Summer Replacement - Part Two"

One of the great pleasures, and may I say, responsibilities of occupying a platform is the ability to avail that platform to those on their way up, to receive some initiating public recognition.

Here again, during my weeklong absence, I bring you my vacation “Fill-In” for the interim, Mr. Samuel “Mark Twain” Clemens. 

Although new to blogging, the author is really quite promising.

The following is the opening to a speech, following a speech delivered by the famous French actress Miss Sarah Bernhardt. 

Ladies and gentlemen,

I would seem sort of cruelty to inflict upon an audience like this one our rude English tongue, after we have heard that divine speech flowing in that lucid Gallic tongue.

It has always been a marvel to me – that French language; it has always been a puzzle to me.  How beautiful that language is.  How expressive it seems to be.  How full of grace it is.

And when it comes from lips like those, how eloquent and how liquid it is.  And, oh, I am always deceived – I always think I am going to understand it.

Oh, it is such a delight to me, such a delight to me, to meet Madame Bernhardt, and laugh hand to hand and heart to heart with her.

I have seen her play, as we all have, and oh, that is divine; but I have always wanted to know Madame Bernhardt herself – her fiery self.  I have wanted to know that beautiful character.

Why, she is the youngest person I ever saw, except myself – for I always feel young when I come in the presence of young people.

I have a pleasant recollection of an incident so many years ago – when Madame Bernhardt came to Hartford, where I lived, and she was going to play and the tickets were three dollars, and there were two lovely women – a widow and her daughter – neighbors of ours, highly cultivated ladies they were; their tastes were fine and elevated, but they were very poor, and they said:  “Well, we must not spend six dollars on a pleasure of the mind, a pleasure of the intellect; we must spend it, if it must go at all, to furnish to somebody bread to eat.”

And so they sorrowed over the fact that they had to give up that great pleasure of seeing Madame Bernhardt, but there were two neighbors equally highly cultivated and who could not afford bread, and those good-hearted Joneses sent that six dollars – deprived themselves of it – and sent it to those poor Smiths to buy bread with.  And those Smiths took it and bought tickets with it to see Miss Bernhardt.

Oh yes, some people have tastes and intelligence also.
Birthday "shoutout" to Rachel, simply spectacular in every regard.  You were way more than a "throw-in" in the deal.  You were my fortunate bonus.  And that's not just StepDaddy bushwa.  I mean it.

Best wishes always,

Your Stepladder (which is what she jokingly called me when she was a kid.)

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