The San Francisco Post tells how a crew of amateur oarsmen were taken in and done for. The boys were waiting for a belated member of the crew, when a well-dressed and modest young stranger strolled into the boathouse and began to inspect the equipments with great interest. This is the way it turned out:
"I'll tell you what we'll do, fellows," said the stroke. "As No. 4 isn't coming, suppose we coax that dude there to take a row and burst him all up?" The perpetration of this time-honored joke upon a "softy" was received with approbation, and the newcomer was, with a grand show of hospitality, invited to take the vacant oar. "Well, I don't know, gentlemen," said the young man, looking at his watch doubtfully. "I'm a stranger here. I do need a little exercise, though." "Oh, get in," said No. 2, winking at his companions; "a little spin will do you good," and they finally persuaded the victim of their kindly scheme to take off his coat and assume a club cap. "Now, keep your eye on me and try to keep time." said the captain. "You'll never, never make an oarsman, unless you watch the stroke." "I'll do the best I can, gentlemen," said the guest, meekly. "I'm always willing to improve." The boat went down towards Hunter's Point, a couple of miles at an easy three-quarter stroke, the newcomer pulling away manfully with the rest, and when they eased off to turn back they were surprised to observe that the stranger did not appear to be quite so much blown as they expected. "Now, then, young feller," said the stroke with a grin, "try to keep up with the procession. Hit her up boys, hard all!" But somehow the stranger scratched along with the rest, and though the pace was something like forty-six when they passed Butchertown, the victim sawed serenely away and the bowman even imageined that he splashed less than any man in the boat. When they finally drew up to the float, and while the crew were panting for wind, spitting cotton and wiping their dripping faces, the "passenger" looked around, with a childlike smile upon his unflushed face, and softly remarked:
"Why didn't you spurt her?" "Spurt the dickens," panted the stroker; "why-er-what the -er-I say, young feller, where did you come from?" "From New York, gentlemen," replied the stranger, modestly, as he slipped on his coat and started up the wharf. "My name is Hanlan-and I hope to see you all at Vallejo on Thursday. Good morning." And since then all you have to do to get fourteen stretchers fired at you, is to stick your head into the Pioneer club-house and yell, "Hard all!" [Aquatic.