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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 132 pages of information about Best Short Stories.

“Some un sick at yo’ house, Mis’ Carter?” inquired Lila.  “Ah seed de doctah’s kyar eroun’ dar yestidy.”

“It was for my brother, Lila.”

“Sho!  What’s he done got de matter of ’im?”

“Nobody seems to know what the disease is.  He can eat and sleep as well as ever, he stays out all day long on the veranda in the sun, and seems as well as anyone, but he can’t do any work at all.”

“He cain’t—­yo’ says he cain’t work?”

“Not a stroke.”

“Law, Mis’ Carter, dat ain’t no disease what yo’ broth’ got.  Dat’s a gif!”

NO JOQUE

The difficulties of western journalism are illustrated by the following notice from The Rocky Mountain Cyclone

AD ASTRA PER ASPERA

We begin the publication ov the Rocy Mountain Cyclone with some phew diphiculties in the way.  The type phounder phrom whom we bought our outphit phor this printing ophice phailed to supply us with any ephs or cays, and it will be phour or phive weex bephore we can get any.  We have ordered the missing letters and will have to get along without them until they come.  We don’t lique the loox ov this variety ov spelling any better than our readers, but mistaix will happen in the best ov regulated phamilies, and iph the ephs and c’s and x’s and q’s hold out we shall ceep (sound the c hard) the Cyclone whirling aphter a phashion till the sorts arrive.  It is no joque to us, it’s a serious aphair.

ELIMINATION

To meet every situation which arises, and to do it in diplomatic language, is only the gift of the elect: 

“Waiter, bring me two fried eggs, some ham, a cup of coffee, and a roll,” said a traveler in a city of the Middle West.

“Bring me the same,” said his friend, “but eliminate the eggs.”

“Yessir,” said the waiter.

In a moment he came back, leaned confidentially and penitently over the table, and whispered: 

“We ‘ad a bad accident just before we opened this mornin’, sir, and the ’andle of the liminator got busted off.  Will you take yer eggs fried, same as this ’ere gentleman?”

HIS GREAT AMBITION

No true American likes to acknowledge that he has a superior, even in his own family.

Little Sydney had reached the mature age of three and was about to discard petticoats for the more manly raiment of knickerbockers.  The mother had determined to make the occasion a memorable one.  The breakfast table was laden with good things when the newly breeched infant was led into the room.

“Ah!” exclaimed the proud mother, “now you are a little man!”

Sydney, thoughtfully displaying his garments to their full advantage, edged close to his mother and whispered, “Can I call pa Bill now?”

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