Works in the Herald 1922

Scene: A city office.
Time: Yesterday.
     A worthy citizen.
     A female voice (sweet).
     A male voice (raucous).
     An infernal instrument.
     Various other voices.

The citizen, seated at his desk, takes up the infernal instrument and places the 
   receiver to his ear.
The Citizen: Hullo!  Hullo!  Hul --
The Instrument: Biz-z-z-z-z!  Ick!  Ick!
Female Voice: Central.
Citizen: I want oh, double nine, double three, double oh.
Female Voice: Oh double five, double --
Citizen: No! no!  Not double five, I want --
Female Voice: You shouldn't say "Nought five."  You should say -
Citizen: But I don't want nought five.  I want --
Female Voice: Then why did you ring?
The Instrument: Ga-r-r-r-r!  Tut!  Tit-tut!
Citizen: Hullo!  Hullo!  Hul --
The Instrument: Gaggle! Ack!  Ack! ACK!
Citizen (crossly): Don't DO that!!!
     (He impatiently pumps the receiver hook).
Female Voice (suddenly): Don't do THAT!
Citizen: What???
Female Voice: Don't jiggle the 'phone!
The Instrument: Tut, tut!
Citizen: I was NOT "jiggling" the 'phone -- whatever you mean by that.  I want oh, 
   double nine, double three, double oh.
Female Voice: Oh, double nine uble-uble-uble --
     (A profound and sudden silence).
The Instrument (after a pause): Zee-e-e-e-e.
Raucous Voice: Aw!  "ave a barth! 'E wouldn't 'ave a charnce of winnin' with seven 
   stone up.  See wot 'e done on the track --
Faint Voice: Might as well send a pound of sausages, too.
Another Faint Voice: Young ones?
Still Another Voice: Didn't get home till three this morning.
The Instrument: Ick!
Yet Another Voice: No; I simply detest jazzing.
Citizen: Hey!  I think we're crossed.
Raucous Voice: Lost?  Of course 'e lost. 'E couldn't win a 'ack race.
The Instrument: Ack-ack-ack-ack-ack.
Citizen: Hullo!  Hullo!  Hul --
Brisk Voice: Johnson here.
Citizen: Oh, Johnson, I've been trying to get you for the last hour.  About that 
   order I sent you yesterday?
Brisk Voice: Yes.  I've been trying to get you all the morning.  It is most 
   important that you should know that those goods --
The Instrument: Blump!  Ze-e-e-e.  Ack!  Ack!
Citizen: Hullo!  Hullo!
Female Voice: Did you get them?
Citizen (wildly): Course I got them.  You've just cut us off.  I want oh, double 
   nine, double --
Female Voice (sweetly): Engaged.
Citizen: What!!  Why --
The Instrument: Zim-zim-zim-zim-zim.  AGGLE!!
Citizen: What the-?-!-?-!!
The Instrument: Tutt; tutt!  Tutt-tutt!

The Mooch of Life
"C.J. Dennis"
Herald, 27 May 1922, p6

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2002-06