The Next of Kin eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 140 pages of information about The Next of Kin.

In a certain restaurant there is a little waitress with clustering black hair and saucy little turned-up nose.  She moves quickly, deftly, decidedly, and always knows what to do.  She is young, pretty, and bright, and many a man has made up his mind to speak to her and ask her to “go out and see a show”; but after exchanging a few remarks with her, he changes his mind.  Something tells him it would not go!  She carries trays of dishes from eight-thirty to six every day except Sunday.  She has respectfully refused to take her allowance from the Patriotic Fund, explaining that she has a job.  The separation allowance sent to her from the Militia Department at Ottawa goes directly into the bank, and she is able to add to it sometimes from her wages.

The people in the block where Mrs. Tweed lived will tell you that she suddenly gave up her suite and moved away and they do not know where she went, but they are very much afraid she was going “wrong.”  What a lot of pleasant surprises there will be for people when they get to heaven!

CHAPTER VII

CONSERVATION

There are certain words which have come into general circulation since the war.  One of the very best of these is “Conservation.”

Conservation is a fine, rich-sounding, round word, agreeable to the ear and eye, and much more aristocratic than the word “Reform,” which seems to carry with it the unpleasant suggestion of something that needs to be changed.  The dictionary, which knows everything, says that “Conservation means the saving from destructive change the good we already possess,” which seems to be a perfectly worthy ambition for any one to entertain.

For many people, changes have in them an element of wickedness and danger.  I once knew a little girl who wore a sunbonnet all summer and a hood all winter, and cried one whole day each spring and fall when she had to make the change; for changes to her were fearsome things.

This antagonism to change has delayed the progress of the world and kept back many a needed reform, for people have grown to think that whatever is must be right, and indeed have made a virtue of this belief.

“It was good enough for my father and it is good enough for me,” cries many a good tory (small t, please), thinking that by this utterance he convinces an admiring world that all his folks have been exceedingly fine people for generations.

But changes are inevitable.  What is true to-day may not be true to-morrow.  All our opinions should be marked, “Subject to change without notice.”  We cannot all indulge ourselves in the complacency of the maiden lady who gave her age year after year as twenty-seven, because she said she was not one of these flighty things who say “one thing to-day and something else to-morrow.”

Life is change.  Only dead things remain as they are.  Every living thing feels the winds of the world blowing over it, beating and buffeting it, marking and bleaching it.  Change is a characteristic of life, and we must reckon on it!  Progress is Life’s first law!  In order to be as good as we were yesterday, we have to be better.  Life is built on a sliding scale; we have to keep moving to keep up.  There are no rest stations on Life’s long road!

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Project Gutenberg
The Next of Kin from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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