The Land of Contrasts eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 243 pages of information about The Land of Contrasts.
constantly make in swooping down on a single outre instance as characteristic of American life.  If “Old-Fashioned” has not time to pay a visit to America or to read Mr. Bryce’s book, let him at least accept my assurance that the above-mentioned incident seems to the full as extraordinary to the Bostonian as to the Londoner, and that it is just as typical of the habits of the American society girl as the action of Miss Madeleine Smith was of English girls.

    “Of all the sarse thet I can call to mind,
    England doos make the most onpleasant kind. 
    It’s you’re the sinner ollers, she’s the saint;
    Whot’s good’s all English, all thet isn’t, ain’t. 
    She is all thet’s honest, honnable, an’ fair. 
    An’ when the vartoos died they made her heir.”

FOOTNOTES: 

[9] See, e.g., “Ad Familiares,” 5, 18.

[10] This was written just after President Cleveland’s pronunciamento in regard to Venezuela, and thus long before the outbreak of the war with Spain.

[11] This paragraph was written before the outbreak of the Spanish-American war; but the events of that struggle do not seem to me to call for serious modification of the opinion expressed above.

[12] Sir George Campbell, in “Black and White in America.”

VII

Sports and Amusements

In face of the immense sums of money spent on all kinds of sport, the size and wealth of the athletic associations, the swollen salaries of baseball players, the prominence afforded to sporting events in the newspapers, the number of “world’s records” made in the United States, and the tremendous excitement over inter-university football matches and international yacht-races, it may seem wanton to assert that the love of sport is not by any means so genuine or so universal in the United States as in Great Britain; and yet I am not at all sure that such a statement would not be absolutely true.  By true “love of sport” I understand the enjoyment that arises from either practising or seeing others practise some form of skill-demanding amusement for its own sake, without question of pecuniary profit; and the true sport lover is not satisfied unless the best man wins, whether he be friend or foe.  Sport ceases to be sport as soon as it is carried on as if it were war, where “all” is proverbially “fair.”  The excitement of gambling does not seem to me to be fairly covered by the phrase “love of sport,” and no more does the mere desire to see one’s university, state, or nation triumph over someone else’s university, state, or nation.  There are thousands of people who rejoice over or bewail the result of the Derby without thereby proving their possession of any right to the title of sportsman; there is no difference of quality between the speculator in grain and the speculator in horseflesh and jockeys’

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The Land of Contrasts from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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