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The Vagabond


Now that every one has returned from the summer vacation full of exciting stories about running into a New Bedford steamer in a blinding fog or chasing some lovely female up and down the hills of Bermuda on a bicycle, the Vagabond feels inclined to interject his peseta's worth. He too has traveled and done things.

It started one hot Saturday afternoon when the good people of Chicago were preparing to make the next day, Fourth of July, just as much hotter as possible. Gamins with a malicious glint in their eye tossed firecrackers under the wheels of passing cars. The Baby Giant Panda in the Brookfield Zoo was so scared that he refused the attentions of the trained nurse and pointed his tongue naughtily at his monkey neighbors.

Sneaking out of Chicago, the Vagabond spent the weekend traversing Missouri and Kansas and annoying farmers in Model T's and roadside cows with bits of dynamite that went "Bang!" and sometimes "Bang! Bang!" or just "Phfft!" Safe in Colorado Springs, he cheated the most ritzy hotel out of fifty cents for the use of their tennis courts. He headed for what he thought was Albuquerque and grew excited when two girls waved at him from a train that was chugging up a mountain. He followed the train sixty miles, only to discover he was going East.

For the sake of miniature photography he tore a hole in the most obvious part of his pants on a barbed wire fence. It was easier getting back than it was getting over, for the picture--of dried hay in an arid field on a hot day--had been snapped to his satisfaction, and he had no need to hurry. But at the crucial moment of sliding beneath wire, he heard a noise that sounded unmistakably like a hostile creature of the pasture type. So he began to hurry, and he slid so fast there was another rip, and he found out he had torn the opposite side of the obvious part of his pants. . .

In Hollywood he walked to the simple doorway of a big studio. A group of keen-eyed children holding little books stood about the steps. They stared at him closely, mumbled a few words, even touched his sleeve, and then shouted in unison as he passed through, "Naw, he don't look like Mischa Auer!"

Awed by the confusion and complexity of the set, he was a little nervous and his mind empty of words. He saw the actress coming up a studio aisle--it was a theatre set--and he still had nothing to say. He said bello how are you and smiled. Some one else, a blonde, was coming near. "Ginger, can you bear to meet this person? A hasty introduction. "You go to Harvard, do you? Where are you going now?" "To Honolulu. Want to come?" "Oh, a Fresh Man, huh?"

So he went to Honolulu--alone . . .

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