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The Spike: or, Victoria University College Review, June 1922


page 70


9-1-22. As From Balliol College, Oxford.

Dear Spike,—

This morning came a copy of your latest. It moves me to write and say: "How d'ye do? (You will of course understand that in speaking the words I have by now learned a very superior pronunciation.) On second thoughts I think it is worth while extending the parenthesis into a paragraph. To go on then— I fear that the written word must utterly fail to shew you the amount of sheer superiority that can be put into the simplest words properly spoken. You will, I am certain, have read of the doings and the thoughts of Margot Asquith. When the husband of that distinguished lady looked back on his Oxford days, he Baid that the mark of a Balliol man was "a tranquil air of effortless superiority." Think— mild Sir—of the selfconscious idolsmashing, the unregarding zeal, the desperate Pieties of the Goodoldays: Look on this picture and on this—and I ask you I daresay you haven't forgotten Prof. Hunter's riddle: What happens when an importunate Prof, meets an irascible chancellor? Perhaps the subject will lure

Wilfrid and Charles back to the making of verses. Anyhow—" Spike "—if per chance you read this letter to your advisers (and J think I would like that) pray do lift your voice a little above its normal pitch, and I shall be satisfied. Soso. In the last month or two I have met a number of Wikitorians. Mr. Ward spent a day with me some time ago. We had a rare old time turning over Wikitorian things. Not long afterwards Mrs. Marjory Hannah, and Miss Nicholls looked me up. And one morning when I was digging into the Critique of Pure Reason who should appear in my doorway but H. F. von Haast? You may be sure I was delighted to see them. I have found out others also. Only the other day I had tea with Miss Esme North at Bedford College; and on Friday I met John Allan—spending Xmas in England. I hope before long to meet Ivan Sutherland.

And I think that is all. If any freer word may be—My dear Archie—

But I intended to make a pun.

With kind regards,

Harold Miller.