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Ilp anb Slotuu the Coast -


Ilp anb Slotuu the Coast NOTICES TO CORRESPONDENT?- is nothing to pre- vent any town, creating a form oi honour for worthy citizens. The Humane Society, for instance, gives medals and certificates for bravery, Kings are not the only ones who can confer honours. Doigelley might have a list of Freemen, and the town itself might be incorporated. "LJR."—It was in 1870 that this column was first started. "A WELSHMAN."—To attack the "Welsh language wou.d do no good. A people, if they have any right at all, have the right to speak their native language. Scores of national languages are dying. The subject is too large to be dealt with in a note of this kind. "CHUItC MEMBER."—1 have no feeling against Roman Catholics. I have a religion of my own, and so have most people. My definition of religion is, a theory of life and existence. "A CRITIC."—-It does not matter to me whether you agree with me or not. Does it matter to you whether I agree with you or not ? Probably you think my opinions are foolish. That may be what I think about yours. "READER."—This paper is not a benevolent institution, but a business undertak- ing, and costs a large sum weekly to produce. I regret that it cannot flourish on gratuitous advertisements and personal flattery. OBSERVATIONS. It would be a sad thing if the eld were as fcoiish as the young think they are. One of the chief reasons why public men go abroad is to obtain freedom from the people who pester them. It is very difficult for a peer to realise that his footman is as human as he is himself, and as sarcastic. The burdens of life may be so galling that the only safe way is never to put them down lest the bearer might refuse to take them up again. Many a person who has spent his whole life in seeking something he wanted has got nothing from its possession but the discovery of its worthlessness. I often do for children what I hope one day they also may do for children. There is nothing makes a public man more glad than to come across somebody who dtes not want something, who has not got a grievance, and who does not even wish to give him advice. Probably a poor man gets as much out of life as the rich. Just think of having a good appetite every day for seventy or eighty yeara. One of the things I have always care- fully avoided is to manufacture trouble for myself. That man is a fool who wastes time in grumbling at the inevitable. ANOTHER GONE. This year has been very like many of its predecessors, as far as I am concerned, and I am not going to grumble. Some- times the burdens have been a bit heavy, but the rest was sweeter in consequence. and so things were about equal in the end. As far as I can judge, my friends are as numerous as ever they were, and if I do not often gee some of them the fault is neither theirs nor mine. I have to work. ind not once during the year have I failed to do the necessary weekly task. I am very fortunate in my work. If I were a millionaire—I would so Tike to be one for a time—I would still write, but not just the same kind of writing, perhaps, as I do now. The strain would not then be the same, nor would the demands be identical. A millionaire is not forced to earn money. There are signs in many directions of increasing interest in public life. This makes me glad. Municipal management is still far from perfect, but there are improvements of maný kinds, and the hope is strong in me that things will get better and better all the while, notwith- standing the Jeremiahs who are always lamenting the decay and corruption and deterioration of everything and everybody. I do not believe in human decay and corruption. I see little children and young people in the streets, and they arc as bright beautiful as ever their predecessors were. I like to see them, and when I think hew sorrow and sickness and failure and old age will come to them. I am cheered by the thought that it is by these things that joy and health and success and gentle- ness are accentuated, if not created. If there were no sorrow, how could there be any joy? I do not know, sitting here, that I greatly regret the ills of my life when the balance is struck. Life as I know it is a grim sort of joke, and it is necessary to be able to laugh at it in order to make the best of what happens. The chronic grumbler always amuses me, but I do not want tc see much of him. Still, he is interesting as a sort of change. Every year adds to the fascinating interest of the world, and yet oddly enough, as the years pass. the ties of life are loosened without lessening life's attrac- tions. This is wonderful. I like to go about the lanes thinking that my grand- parents felt as I feel, thought as I think. were sad and glad as I am sad and glad. One of my great desiies has always been to live to be old, so as to know what old age meant. Now I know what it means, and the young may think it strange, but I am far more sorry for them than I am for myself or for other old people. One of the greatest advantages that old age has brought to me, and I suppose to other people, is the passing away of all fear. There is nothing much for the eld to be afraid of. Almost everything has happened that can happen, and there is little left but the last act, and there really is nothing in that. I have often tried to be afraid, but have never succeeded, and now I have given the job up. I think I would be afraid if I had to live life over again. It would be terrible in the face of so many "harrow escapes to take all the risks again. What do my friends think? Next year at this time shall I be here writing about another year having gone, or shall I be otherwhere? Nobody knows and nobody cares, at least I do not know or care. In the meantime what will happen ? Again, nobody knows. The only thing to do is to take each day as it comes and to make the best of it, leaving as little as possible for to-morrow, because same day there will be no to- morrow. It is somewhat curious how little the old year brought that I regret or that the new year may bring that I anticipate. Nothing is now of much consequence to me. To a large extent, life's programme has been gone thrcugh, and the future is of far more consequence to others than to me. I wonder if my friends all up and down the coast—not the very young ones—will agree with me in these views on the departure of the old year. What I frequently find among friends is a sort of fear of saying just what they think about old age, lest they should be misunderstood. What does it matter whether they are misunderstood or not? In a short time they will have disappeared and will be as completely forgotten as the dead leaves of last year but one. There is one thing I never forget on New Year's Day, namely, that the shortest day is past and that in a little while the spring will be here with its new life and its old grandeur and beauty. Enter the 2\ew ) Year! I IS IT A I see that somebody has affected an insurance against Mr. Lloyd George becoming Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on or before the 19th of December, 1911. The premium was twenty-five per cent. It is certain that he will be Prime Minister some day if he lives, and it is possible he may be Prime Minister within a year, but the probabili- ties are that a longer time will elapse than a year before he is Prime Minister. I told him years ago what I would do when he was Prime Minister, and he was not then a member of the Government NOT QUITE THE SAME. You do your daily work unrecognised, Beyond the paltry pay that it is worth In markets where men's lives are bought and sold As if they were just common merchandise— Soulless as bars of steel, or sacks of grain And had no end beyond utility. I am what you are, just one of the crowd, All that you long for I, too, seek and crave— Love, human fellowship, and sympathy, But what I find are strife and rivalry Sickness and sorrow, grief and loneliness, And God-sent penalties for sins unknown. I did not seek this devi'-blasted world Nor do I understand why it is cursed With terror from the dawn of life till death, Which is the stepping stone to seething hell. 0, no, my way is not more hard than yours. I often win in battles where you fail. I seize earth's good, which others take from you, And gain by strength what you through weakness lose. I am more grieved for you than for myself, For you have not the strength that I possess, Nor yet the rashness, nor the fearlessness, Nor my contempt for what men think and say. I thrust aside the ills that mar my life And spurn men's scorn, while you their pity crave. I think they oft forget to pity you And make your burdens heavier to bear. My daily work has been my chief delight While yours, alas, is. painful drudgery. What will Almighty God bestow on us, And which of us will have the better part; Yeu, who were gentle from the first to last, I Or I, who rebel-lite relentless fought? DOES IT I There are more than three millions of people starving in China. There are many more starving in the other countries of the world. If I had the power, I would, perhaps unwisely, put an end to this ¡ starvation, but I have not the power. This week between three and four hundred miners were killed in a pit. Hundreds of millions of people have died because they did not know that filth is fatal. What does it all mean? Nobody knows. Then on the top of the awful puzzle I see that another little miracle has been worked at Holywell. I suppose there is no difference in miracles. A miracle is just a miracle. Why do not the Holywell miracle-workers feed those three million starving people in China and do a few other things and, among them, bring to. life again the three or four hundred slaughtered Lancashire miners ? Ah, the puzzle of the world is terrible in its profundity. Just think of the millions of creatures who have been killed this Chritmas time, although they never in- jured anybody and never broke any laws. I have never to go i'ar to find things which I do not understand. MOItfi TEMPERANCE. Everybody knows the danger of the jovial "le'ss 'ave juss' 'nother drink—the en." In the chief city of one of the western states or America, Tacoma, a law has been passed which makes it a mis- demeanour to ask a friend to have just one more drnk. The measure, introduced by the Mayor, Mr Fawcett, was passed by the City Council, and became law. but the Christmas merry-makers declare that Mayor Fawcett will find himself up against something if he tries to cn-faw-cett," as they express it in a local newspaper. Mayer Fawcett says he will en-faw-cett, even if it takes every police- man in the city to do it. I suppose the invitations to have "juss 'nother drink" will be given in future in the State capital of Tacoma without words. The spirit of the thing will be understood. HE KNEW. One of the London papers, referring to what it ca. Is a new~use for brandy." says that a foreigner who was taken ill in the deck at (Bow Street on Saturday was offered brandy. Instead of drinking it, he poured some over the top of his head and asked a policeman to rub the spot." That foreigner was no fool. He knew. SLOW BUT SUBE. The "South Waleb Daily News" says that the year is slowly dying. Ah, how true. but it seems to me, and I have seen a large number of years die that the speed of death in this case is just the Isame as usual. There has never been known all through the ages a case of sudden death of a year. Cardiff is a Wonderful place and perhaps the year is dying more slowly there than else- where. AT LA. ST. I see that at last women are openly going to wear trouserly-a Turkish variety to start with. THE UNBEMEMBEBED. I am very sorry for those who at Christmas time are unremembered They keep silence as a rule, and go on their solitary way sad at heart. To any of the unremembered who read these words my message is "Be of good cheer and never forget to remember the others." The Coast. J.G.












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