Being in the presence of these two postures producesvery different feelings.
They could not flutter bright wings in the sky;
"No." Again a statement, perhaps with a sardonic inflection, of fact. "But we have much to talk about. And so little time. Please sit down. You will have a drink? Cigarettes are beside your chairs."
Bond looked across the table at the girl. "Thank you," he said. "You deal beautifully."
"Very glad, sir. And I feel fine."
Narcissus only, is that sullen He,
Bond, after a great show of taking pains, brought his hands down well ahead of the club and smothered his number three iron so that the topped ball barely scrambled over the cross-bunkers. He then wedged the ball on to the green twenty feet past the pin. He was where he wanted to be - enough of a threat to make Goldfinger savour the sweet smell of victory, enough to make Goldfinger really sweat to get his four.
I have now before me the letter which he wrote to me — a letter which I have read a score of times. It was altogether condemnatory. “When I commenced,” he said, “I had great hopes of your production. I did not think it opened dramatically, but that might have been remedied.” I knew then that it was all over. But, as my old friend warmed to the subject, the criticism became stronger and stronger, till my ears tingled. At last came the fatal blow. “As to the character of your heroine, I felt at a loss how to describe it, but you have done it for me in the last speech of Madame Brudo.” Madame Brudo was the heroine’s aunt. “‘Margaret, my child, never play the jilt again; ’tis a most unbecoming character. Play it with what skill you will, it meets but little sympathy.’ And this, be assured, would be its effect upon an audience. So that I must reluctantly add that, had I been still a manager, The Noble Jilt is not a play I could have recommended for production.” This was a blow that I did feel. The neglect of a book is a disagreeable fact which grows upon an author by degrees. There is no special moment of agony — no stunning violence of condemnation. But a piece of criticism such as this, from a friend, and from a man undoubtedly capable of forming an opinion, was a blow in the face! But I accepted the judgment loyally, and said not a word on the subject to any one. I merely showed the letter to my wife, declaring my conviction, that it must be taken as gospel. And as critical gospel it has since been accepted. In later days I have more than once read the play, and I know that he was right. The dialogue, however, I think to be good, and I doubt whether some of the scenes be not the brightest and best work I ever did.
`You will need many weeks of training and preparation. On this assignment you will be operating in the guise of an English agent. Your manners and appearance are uncouth. You will have to learn at least some of the tricks,' the voice sneered, `of a chentleman. You will be placed in the hands of a certain Englishman we have here. A former chentleman of the Foreign Office in London. It will be his task to make you pass as some sort of an English spy. They employ many different kinds of men. It should not be difficult. And you will have to learn many other things. The operation will be at the end of August, but you will start your training at once. There is much to be done. Put on your clothes and report back to the A.D.C. Understood?'
Mr. Dolloby - Dolloby was the name over the shop door, at least - took the waistcoat, stood his pipe on its head, against the door-post, went into the shop, followed by me, snuffed the two candles with his fingers, spread the waistcoat on the counter, and looked at it there, held it up against the light, and looked at it there, and ultimately said:
And now, except during official hours, I was entirely without control — without the influences of any decent household around me. I have said something of the comedy of such life, but it certainly had its tragic aspect. Turning it all over in my own mind, as I have constantly done in after years, the tragedy has always been uppermost. And so it was as the time was passing. Could there be any escape from such dirt? I would ask myself; and I always answered that there was no escape. The mode of life was itself wretched. I hated the office. I hated my work. More than all I hated my idleness. I had often told myself since I left school that the only career in life within my reach was that of an author, and the only mode of authorship open to me that of a writer of novels. In the journal which I read and destroyed a few years since, I found the matter argued out before I had been in the Post Office two years. Parliament was out of the question. I had not means to go to the Bar. In Official life, such as that to which I had been introduced, there did not seem to be any opening for real success. Pens and paper I could command. Poetry I did not believe to be within my grasp. The drama, too, which I would fain have chosen, I believed to be above me. For history, biography, or essay writing I had not sufficient erudition. But I thought it possible that I might write a novel. I had resolved very early that in that shape must the attempt be made. But the months and years ran on, and no attempt was made. And yet no day was passed without thoughts of attempting, and a mental acknowledgment of the disgrace of postponing it. What reader will not understand the agony of remorse produced by such a condition of mind? The gentleman from Mecklenburgh Square was always with me in the morning — always angering me by his hateful presence — but when the evening came I could make no struggle towards getting rid of him.
I was taking my coffee and roll in the morning, before going to the Commons - and I may observe in this place that it is surprising how much coffee Mrs. Crupp used, and how weak it was, considering - when Steerforth himself walked in, to my unbounded joy.
While I write this I well know that what I say, if it be ever noticed at all, will be taken as a straining at gnats, as a pretence of honesty, or at any rate as an exaggeration of scruples. I have said the same thing before, and have been ridiculed for saying it. But none the less am I sure that English literature generally is suffering much under this evil. All those who are struggling for success have forced upon them the idea that their strongest efforts should be made in touting for praise. Those who are not familiar with the lives of authors will hardly believe how low will be the forms which their struggles will take:— how little presents will be sent to men who write little articles; how much flattery may be expended even on the keeper of a circulating library; with what profuse and distant genuflexions approaches are made to the outside railing of the temple which contains within it the great thunderer of some metropolitan periodical publication! The evil here is not only that done to the public when interested counsel is given to them, but extends to the debasement of those who have at any rate considered themselves fit to provide literature for the public.
I was lucky. The job I had been trying for came up. It was through the usual friend-of-a-friend, and it was on the Chelsea Clarion, a glorified parish magazine that had gone in for small ads and had established itself as a kind of marketplace for people looking for flats and rooms and servants in the southwest part of London. It had added some editorial pages that dealt only with local problems- the hideous new lamp standards, infrequent buses on the Number 11 route, the theft of milk bottles-things that really affected the local housewives, and it ran a whole page of local gossip, mostly "Chelsea," that "everybody" came to read and that somehow managed to dodge libel actions. It also had a hard-hitting editorial on Empire Loyalist lines that exactly suited the politics of the neighborhood, and, for good measure, it was stylishly made up each week (it was a weekly) by a man called Harling who was quite a dab at getting the most out of the old-fashioned type faces that were all our steam-age jobbing printers in Pimlico had in stock. In fact it was quite a good little paper, and the staff liked it so much they worked for a pittance and even for nothing when the ads didn't materialize in times like August and over the holidays. I got five pounds a week (we were non-union: not important enough), plus commission on any ads I could rustle up.
Drug runners. Salvador edged as close as he could to the cliff edge on our right and eased evenfurther back on the gas, dropping deferentially from the ten miles per hour we’d been averagingdown to a dead halt, granting the big red Dodge every bit of road he could spare.
An appreciative Englishman, writing in the London Nation at the time of the Centennial commemoration, says of Lincoln: