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February 12, 1938 - Image 13

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1938-02-12

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Saturday, February 12, 1938


Page Thirteen

Saturday, February 1 2, 1 938 THE MICHIGAN DAILY Paae Thirteen

Undr TUhe CWith Lord Beaconsfield
Under TheClockW(Benjamin Disraeli)

A Sad Story
Of Johnny G.
And The Ho
IT WAS A SAD STORY that came tC
us-even unto the very day of th
J-Hop indeed. For it is the tale oa
the youngest member of the Boys ir
the Back Room, our gentle friend
Johnny Greenbehindtheears.
For weeks the Boys had looked for-
ward to the night when they coulc
send Johnny forth, bedecked in th
He Hopped Over
Old Southern Gentleman's swallow
tails, Peter the Deepthroated Belch's
tux pants, George the Potbellied Bar-
tender's checkered vest and Payne
Whitney studs. Johnny was late last
night and the Boys while away the
time counting out the extra buttons
and the mildewed dollar bills they
had collected between them.
That afternoon they had said to
him., "Johnny, you're ready. You're
in the pink. We got you into the
finest condition you could get into."
And Peter had clinked those heavy
coins in his pocket meaningly.
Johnny was eager enough but he
seemed mystified. The Old South-
ern Gent mentioned it when Johnny
had left that afternoon after he had
been told to come back again at seven.
"Suh, it is all a great mystery to
him, a great glorious adventuah tah
him." And he wiped a tear away as
he politely thumped his cane against
the gabboon. The other boys made
plans, laying out the swallow tail
and rubbing the marks off the stag
celluloid collar with an art-gum
Seven came and Johnny was late.
The Boys jingled their pockets im-
patiently and flicked the lint off the
tux pants. Finally Johnny's step was
heard and they leapt to their feet.
The door flew open and there he
was, their own little Johnny. And
there were Johnny's BVDs and there
was Johnny in them. Across his chest
-hiding those gentle fronds of light
blonde hair-he had a number torn
fram a calendar. And his knees were
clattering together like a bundle af
heads in a cramdsession.
"Johnny!" said Peter the D.T.B.
"Johnny!" said George the Pot.B.T.
"Johnny, sub," said the O.S.G.
"There was no need of you to come
like that. You could have changed
over here," said Peter for it now was
his turn to be mystified. He motioned
to the clothes on the bed.
Johnny looked at the swallow tails.
"You mean I gotta wear those things?

Why I'll never be able to hop any- the dancing couples with a dreamy
where!" eye. A haze descended on them all.
"Suh, Ah happed in them ...and All but Johnny, who slipped away.
fash many a yeah ah happed in them,
suh!" the Old Southern Gentleman A little while afterwards he returned
said politely but firmly. happy and buoyant. They looked at
"But I'll trip over them, honest him wistfully.
I will." "Boys, I just me tthe swellest girl.
"You'll trip over them!" George She's from way out of town . . . not
the Potbellied Bartender said. "Look, just a town girl. She's from a place
boys, he doesn't know what he's talk- called Dexter-I'll bet ybu never
ing about! He's crazy! Are you crazy, heard of it-and I'm going to take
Johnny? Come on now, tell us. You her to this here J-Hop next year. I'm
ain't gone crazy have you, kid? Look, glad you told me about it."
bay, s gata feverA At first there was coldness like a
ning araund naked." And Gearge the sorrowing winter wind, but in a mo-
Potbellied Bartender blushed. ment Peter the Deepthroated Belch
"Laak," pleaded Peter the Deep- looked eager, and then the Old South-
throated Belch, "Tonight is the J-Hop ern Gentleman smiled politely, and
and there you stand in your BVDs. George the Potbellied Bartender
It's uncivilized!" he shouted with a beamed. They leaned forward and
deepthroated eructation. hope climbed wearily into their hurt,
"But I'll only trip over them," worn faces,
Johnny insisted. s
"Oh, my gawd, he'll trip over them," Sa, little children,ya 4see that
Peter moaned, all his dreams caming (continlued en Page 14)
down upon his head and turning to
dandruff. "Boys, he'll trip over them!"
And he dropped brokenly into a chair.
George patted Peter on the shoulder
consolingly and looked menacingly at
Johnny. "What will the chaperons
think? What will your date think?"
"What do you mean, chaperons ...
and date?" Johnny asked terrified.
"Date ... I thought this was an indi-
vidual event and not for teams.
What's a date got to do with the
J-Hap? Have I gatta belang ta the ,s ~
WAA?" And Johnny snorted satirical- a
ly and wagged his head over his
"Teams, Johnny ... an individual
event and what was that crack about
the WAA?" Peter said weakly.

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"The J-Hop is a dance, Johnny. It
is the biggest social gesture of the
year. They have two orchestras and
you get tight," George defined piously.
"And you have a fight with your
girl," Peter added in a voice heavy
with awe.
"Boys! Do you mean that for a
month now I have been giving you
my board money and my beer money
and you have been watching my diet
and you have been tightening my
belt ..."
"So you could have the cash to go
to the J-Hop," chimed all the Boys
"And I thought all the time you
were getting me in shape for an ath-
letic event. I was going to win my
M." Johnny looked as if he might
break down, but anger blasted his
youthful countenance. "And I suppose
that fortnight of running up and
down the Diagonal chasing that guy
who always carried those little en-
velopes around under his arm and
always just flicked them under my
nose, going from the Union to the
League and to the Library and to
Ecorse and to the Engine Arch . . .
that guy was the guy selling the
"Yes," they all said unhappily.
"I thought all the time I was doing
roadwork and he was like in hare-
and-hounds," Johnny said brokenly.
"I practiced hopping at night too. I
could hop from here to the I-M." The
sigh from the Boys in the Back Room
ballooned his BVD shorts behind him
and he recalled his n-dness. They
saw him shiver, so George the P.B.T.
threw him an old pair of overalls and
he got into them, also donning the
fulldress shirt they had laid out for
When he had dressed, the Boys rose
with Johnny in their midst and
walked in mournful silence to the door
of the Armory. George the Potbellied
Bartender offered the man there a
little white envelope.
"That won't get you in here. That's
for the J-Hop."
The Boys in the Back Room winced
and Peter handed the man some
money. Upstairs they went and to-
gether they sat in a corner watching

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