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The Spike: or, Victoria College Review, June 1910

Sapere Aude

page 17

Sapere Aude.

Sapere Aude

"Well," said Mr. Dooley, "was ye at th' maytin' las' night, Hinnissy ?"

"What maytin' was that?" Mr. Hennessy asked.

"Och! it was a gr-reat maytin'," replied Mr. Dooley. "It was in th' Town Hall, and who shud be in th' chair but Tom Wilforrd himself. What d' y' think iv that now? There he was sittin' up on th' stage as larrge as life, wid a brown suit and two empthy glasses an' a 'wather bottle in front iv him. An' whin th' applause caused be his appayrence had subsided, he got up an' read out all th apologies f'r abs'nce like th' gintl'min that he is; there was Lorrd Plunket an' Joey Warrd, an' people ye'd known all y'r life, an' them as ye'd niver hearrd iv b'fore, all iv 'cm shtayin away fr'm th' maytin'. An' all th' crowd that was there, too; there was lawyers an' docthors an' students an' Sosh'lists an' M.P.'s an' Perfess'rs, all hobnobbin thegither as tho' they was all inth'rested. An' when Tom Wilforrd had read th' apologies, he said f'r th' furrst time in his life he was talkin' on a subjec' that he knew nuthin iv'. But he just sphoke like he always does, be jabers, an' called on Perfess'r von Zedlitz t' say a few wurrds. Then up jumps von Vedlitz an' off he shtarrts; an' there was no shtoppin' him. Ye knaw, Hinnissy, von Z. shud ha' been Irish—he's that ugly. An' talk! he'd talk th' ligs off in an iron kettle. But he was that onrespecthful : talkin' iv Sir Rhobert Shtout an' calling him His Washup insthead iv His Highness. An' he says, too, that Sir Bob seemed t' suggest, says he, that it was imperence f'r th' Perfess'rs t' advocate to-day, he says, th' improvements that Sir Bob wanted twinty Years ago. But th' way von Zedlitz said it, y' knaw. Shure a man like Sir Rhobert can change his mind iv'ry t'ree or four years widout havin' t' pu tup wid insults fr'm Perfess'rs.

"But I was tellin' ye iv th' maytin'. Well, th' ould von chap was coverin th' groun' in gr-reat shtyle, an' was afther th' wurrld's recorrd, an' so he turrns t' Tom Wilforrd, who Was timekeeper an' shtakeholder and iv'rythin' else: 'Tom,' says he, 'How much more time have I got f'r th' distance ?' 'T'ree minutes t' go,' says Tom. An' ould von wastes no time an' wants t' book a bet wid anny mimber iv th' Senate, page 18 but Tom had no license, so von Zedlitz just sat down wid much applause. An' thin. whin iv'rywan was just beginnin' t' wondher whether they'd get out before closin' time, th' spaches just shtarted wan afther another. There was Herdman, M.P.. who slipoke f'r a shorrt while an'was in favour iv annythin' that annybody else was; an' Perfess'r Eastherfiel'. who wurrked up a wondherful enthus'sm. If ye do that,' he says (I forget what ye (do), 'but.' says he, 'if ye do that, ye 'd be like an inflated bike he says; 'if they put anny more in' ye,' says he, 'there wouldn't be annyroom f'r it.' he says, amid prolonged cheers fr'm opposition benches. An' wid that 'wondherful simile. I got tired an' lost a lot iv th' spaches. f'r which I was annoyed. But afther a shorrt while, about t'ree or fire hours. Tom Wilforrd had another turrn, an' he says th' motion is now open f'r discussion. An' then Johnny O'Shea woke up. He's a broth iv a bhoy is Johnny. He found out that Somewan had moved a motion, an' he gets up t' shpake. 'I'm agin th' motion,' he says. 'If I was a Perfess'r,' says he. 'I might be conceited meself.' An' the crowd cheered. f'r he was so modest. An' he's that clever too f'r in th' next breath he tells us, he does, that no wan knew morre Latin than he did whin he got his furrst-class honours. Shure it's a gran' thing that he's not a Perfess'r. But he's a rale broth iv a bhoy, an ' he was agin th' motion. tho' he did forget t' tell us why.

"Well. well, Hinnissy, there was only wan other catasthrophe worth raycordin'. Froggy de la Mare got up t' shpake, an' what d' ye think happened? Tom Wilforrd didn't knaw him!"

"What's that ?" said Mr. Hennessy. "Tom Wilforrd not knaw th' Frog?"

" Naw," replied Mr. Dooley. "Tom didn't knaw him an' Tom a shportin' man too! But th' Frog didn't mind; he had wan black eye, an' so cud only say a few wurrds, an thin ti ' motion was put b' Tom Wilforrd an' carried nem. con. wid only wan vote agin it; an' fir aujenee whit home, bein' afther ten o'clock."

"But tell me. Dooley," said Mr. Hennessy, "what was th' maytin about at all, at all?"

"Shure an' I forgot t' tell ye, did I?" said Mr. Dooley. "Why, it was held f'r t' rayform th' Univerrsity, an' they forrmed a legue called th' Univerrsity Rayform League, an' Johnny O'Shea an' meself are goin' t' forrm th' left wing."