Monday, 18 February 2013


        The newspaper business is a great game, especially in the daily routine of a city editor’s life. Just in the midst of the writing of an obituary of some ancient subscriber who had been a constant reader of this great family journal since its first issue in the year 1846, and who always paid promptly in advance, and had never called upon the editor to tell him how he should manage his paper, and when hot tears threaten to flow from the city editor’s eyes and blot out the words of eulogy that flow from his typewriter, there breaks through the office door the radiant face of the daddy of a new boy! Tears and joy mingle in the same breath, and the giving and taking of life are recorded in the same page. The happy daddy is introduced to the lady editors of the society department, to whom he tells his tale of gladness, and the result is a thrilling story of the possibilities of the new life that in time will become, like his daddy, a constant reader of the g.f.j.
          But that obituary must be finished in time for the first edition, and while the city editor is putting the finishing touches on a most pathetic paragraph, in pops the breezy manager of the Temple theatre and asks him to write a scream for his Forty Fat Frolicsome Fairies, the greatest comedy combination that ever graced the boards of any Thespian temple, not even excepting the Lyric or the Savoy or any one of the half hundred picture halls in Hamilton. Before the city editor has done with the kind words about the ancient subscriber, and finished the showman’s scream, a fellow who has spent the night on a bench in Chief Whatley’s cozy palace, on the corner of King William and Mary, sneaks in to ask him to suppress the story of his arrest at Madame Tuilieries’ ladies boarding house, for it would be very unpleasant reading for his mother and sisters or possibly his fiancée.
          Then, after introducing a happy bridegroom to the society editors, and telling them to put all the trimmings on the bride’s wedding gown, and describing her travelling costume, dressing the groom in conventional black, andstarting them off with congratulations and best wishes, the city editor turns to the tear side of life and writes:
          “But the stately ship moves on,
                   To the haven under the hill;
           And, oh! for the touch of a vanished hand,
                   And the sound of a voice that is till.”
          Then comes a lull in the pathetic side, and the old typewriter is content to record the commonplace facts of a city’s life, stirring up the controllers for some imaginary omission of official duties, or the shirkers who spend their evenings in the pool halls or the movie shows instead of reporting to a returning officer that they are ready to enlist and go overseas to stand shoulder to shoulder with the brave boys in the trenches. The city editor has a varied life, and he is to be congratulated when he reaches the managing editor’s desk, where he can lay back in his easy chair, smoke ten cent cigars and think over the ups and downs he has passed through, from a police reporter to the top rung in the ladder of newspaper life.



          A hundred years ago there was known to ancient history a prophetic old lady, named Mother Shipton, and many of her prophecies have come to pass even in these later years. She told us of carriages in the streets without horses, and sure enough we have the motor cars, with all their good and bad faults. When motor cars were first introduced the body of them was invariably painted red, and this gave them the name of the “Red Devil,” for their appearance in the streets was a holy terror to pedestrians, and they are not much better to this day. We came across the other day a list of prophesies that are worth remembering, as many of them have already been fulfilled, and they are all to be realized by the year 2000. Here are some of the prophecies:
          In the year 2000, the city hall reporters on the Hamilton daily papers will tune up their typewriters to poetic measure, and instead of telling all the mean things said and done in the city hall, they will laud our Goodenough mayor and the board of control, and tell us what a blessing they have been to the city in patching up the McKittrick deal, the mistakes of the old officials in dealing with the Brennan-Hollingsworth contract, and a few other sore spots that have been festering on the body politic for lo these many moons.
          In the year 2000 the lords of creation will be ladies, for women will be the ruling power, and petticoats only a vague tradition. Electricity will be the universal motive power – ladies’ tongues excepted.
          In the year 200 great distress will prevail in Hamilton from want of natural gas and the women will meet on the Gore and pass resolutions of maledictions on the civic authorities for not providing coke ovens to supply their kitchens with a handy and cheap fuel to cook the daily meals. The men, being nearly starved at home nursing the babies, will do their bit in cursing the mayor, board of control, and city council, for lack of judgment in not encouraging the building of coke ovens.
          In the year 2000, motor cars, motorcycles and bicycles will be out of date, and flying machines will take their places. Every man of moderate means will own a flying machine, so that he can take his wife and family, or, if he hasn’t a wife, his best girl, out for an evening airing to Wellington square and Toronto, and home again across the lake from Toronto to Niagara Falls in time to go to the movie show.
          In the year 2000, strikes will be abolished, and labor will come into its own. The hours of labor will be shortened, and the Royal Connaught will eat and sleep its guests for a dollar a day.
          The prophet here drops into poetry, of we give a sample
          In the year 2000, why
          The people will begin to fly,
          And railway trains will cease to race.
          When man a journey has to make
          He’ll bag and umbrella take,
          His window open and fly through space.

          In the year 2000, woman will be man’s superior, or she will know the reason why. She will “boss” the board of control and the city council and preside with dignity and grace in our Goodenough mayor’s chair. She will sit down promptly on the Hydro board of that period, and let them know who is running things.
          In the year 2000, woman will have carved out her true position in the world of letters and labor. “The New Woman” will have died a natural death, and from her ashes will have sprung a new creation, embracing the best in the old and the new woman of today.
          In the year 2000, all civilized nations will become merged into one, and the Huns will be relegated to a back seat. English will become the universal language, and bilingual schools will only be remembered s a fad of ancient days. The Pitman system of shorthand will be the only recognized means of communication, and telegraphs and telephones will be superseded by a system of telepathy.
          In the year 2000, by means of the submarine system of travel, English, Irish, Scotch and Welsh workmen will be able to live in their own country and still earn their living in the factories in Hamilton. By the daylight saving plan of putting the clocks an hour ahead, they can leave their homes early in the morning, and in an hour’s time, be at work in Hamilton, putting in a full day and getting back across the sea in time for an early supper, and then have a long evening before bedtime. When Jules Verne wrote his celebrated story of submarine travel, he little thought of the possibilities of the future. Those living in Australia and working in Hamilton will be able to spend the weekend at home with their families, returning on Monday morning.
          The year 2000 is only 83 years off, and in that time great things may be expected to happen in Hamilton. This cruel war will probably be ended before that time, and the brave boys in khaki who left their homes and best girls in Hamilton while they crossed the sea to teach the Kaiser a few lessons, will have returned, and settled down to business, and become happy husbands and the fathers of future generations of Hamiltonians.

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