“‘I engaged a sitting for 3 o’clock by telephone,’ he said. ’Why have I been kept waiting half an hour?’
“The medium’s jaw dropped with peculiar suddenness and she sat down heavily in a chair. A sudden revelation came to me.
“‘Sir,’ I said, addressing the stranger, ’pardon the inquiry, but have you a Sister Ida and a Brother Charley in spirit life? Do you love two women—one fair and wealthy, the other poor and dark, but talented? Does a dark cloud hover over your life and do you hear voices calling you from afar? Are you sensitive and have you developed the sense of tou—?’
“‘Enough!’ cried the man, hoarsely. ’I am convinced—here is your money,’ and he handed me a five-dollar bill.
“‘Thanks,’ said I, and left them there together.”
“Did you ever read the testimonial letters of noted persons?” said the Observer, thoughtfully, stirring his coffee. “There are many things which come with fame besides public adulation; they are material things and have a certain commercial as well as sentimental value, such as soap and corsets, patent medicines, face powder, vapor baths, books, cigars, corned beef, fountain pens, and patented trouser hangers. As soon as a man gets his name in print a few times he is deluged with samples by every manufacturer in the country. I know an actor who hasn’t bought a cake of toilet soap since he began to play leading parts. All he’s got to do is to write a testimonial for some new brand, saying he would use no other, and he gets a case; then, there is a leading lady who once endorsed a certain kind of shoe, and now she’s got a dozen pairs in her trunk, which didn’t cost her a cent.
“Among the personal effects of the late Senator D—— were six dozen porous plasters and nearly a gross of Casey’s Liver Regulator. Whether the senator’s demise was due to his strenuous efforts to deplete this generous supply has never been made known, but I very much doubt if the doctor, who attributed his death to heart failure was familiar with these facts at the time.
“Another famous statesman, who was as bald as he was absent-minded, once mailed a testimonial to the manufacturer of Blank’s Hair Restorer, enclosing a photograph of himself. In their next advertisement they made two cuts from the picture, painting a profusion of wavy hair upon one, and ran them over a reproduction of his letter, labeled, ‘Before and after using.’ When the old gentleman saw it he was so pleased with his appearance in the latter cut that he straightforth bought a wig and ever afterwards kept up the delusion.
“Then there’s the man who is cured by X-Y-Z Cough Cure, or Blither’s Sarsaparilla. He may not be known to half a hundred people before he tries this wonderful stimulant; but after he takes half a dozen bottles and is ‘snatched from the jaws of death,’ his name and features become familiar to several millions of people. I know a carpenter in a northern county who resorted to this method and was so well advertised that, when the national representative for that district died, B—— was nominated for Congress and elected by a big majority.