“Wasn’t it glorious!” she said. “Isn’t he a splendid player! Did you ever see anything like that tenth hole? And I won! I just thought I should scream when Mr. Wallace lay dead for a five on this hole!”
“Say, he’s all right, eh, Smith!” said Mr. Harding, handing me a roll of money. “Here’s your share of the plunder. It was like picking it up in the street after a cyclone has hit a national bank. I’m going to blow mine in giving a dinner to Wallace and Kirkaldy, and everybody is invited.”
We had that dinner, and right royally did we welcome the new and speed the parting professional. And this is how Tom Wallace, “Bishop’s hired man,” came to Woodvale as its golf professional.
After the dinner in honour of our professionals Kirkaldy made me a present of his famous driver. It is a beauty, and I confidently expect to lengthen my drive by at least ten yards with it. For the first time in my life I am now reasonably sure with my cleek shots. I do not know when I have been so well satisfied with my prospects.
My apparent stock losses to date foot up to $202,000.
ENTRY NO. XIV
MYSELF AND I
For an hour I have looked at the unsullied page of this diary. It amused me to turn back over its pages, but when I started to write the words would not come.
A liar is one who by direction or indirection seeks to deceive. The man who lies to an enemy is a diplomat; the man who lies to give harmless play to his imagination is an artist; the man who lies to his friends for the purpose of taking advantage of them is a scoundrel, and the man who lies to himself is a fool.
After re-reading this diary I am convinced that I belong in the last class.
I have been lying to myself for the past three weeks. With a smile on my lips I have looked myself in the eye and told the one falsehood over and over again. I have been the ass fondly to believe I told it with such detail and verisimilitude as to carry conviction to myself. I told it for the last time a few minutes ago.
My alter ego laughed in my face. I dislike to be jeered at, even by myself. I humbly apologised. I promised to reform and confess, and here is the confession:
I am in love. I have been in love for three weeks. It is not necessary to say with whom, since I and myself both know, but in order that the crimes of evasion and equivocation may no longer be charged against me, I frankly record that I am in love with Grace Harding!
There you have it, John Henry Smith! Head it over carefully. Does that suit you? With it goes my humble apology. Does not this constitute the amende honorable? What did you say? Ah, it does! Good Shake hands, old fellow! Now let’s sit quietly down and talk this matter over, and see how we stand. I wish you to help me.
The situation is slightly less complicated. It is settled that I am in love with Grace Harding. What’s that? “We are in love with Grace Harding,” you say. Very well, old fellow, have it your own way. You are the only one in the world with whom I shall refuse to become jealous. They say that two heads are better than one, even if one is a blockhead—meaning me, of course.