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About The Oregon statesman. (Salem, Or.) 1916-1980 | View Entire Issue (Dec. 24, 1922)
THE OREGON STATESMAN, SALEM. OREGON
SUNDAY MORNING. DECEMBER 24. 1922
"Christmas Gift I Should Like to Be
Able to Give Bud"
(From the December Rotartan)
That boy of mine. Buddy, cele
brated his tenth birthday the
serenth of last July and at that
time I thought he had asked for
Mid receiTed almost eyerTthinz
boy could want.
But here is Christmas Day ap
proaching and I find his wants.
publicly expressed and artfully
implied are as numerous as ever.
It seems to be no trouble to Bad
whateyer to be in want. He can
begin wanting something early
In the morning and keep it up all
day, and just as he is dropping
off to sleep at night he will rouse
himself to remind you of a new
want that will need attention
as soon as the sun comes no.
This is all right; it is eridence
of a normal boyhood and a
healthy condition. If I had a
ten-year-old ; boy who didn't
want anything I should be worry
ing about him. The times I ask
Bud what he wants, and he re
plies "nothing." I know he is
running a high ferer and is
threatened with something. As
soon as he begins to want again
I know he Is convalescing.
This year his Christmas wants
are many and natural.
He , has informed me that h
wants a regular football suit,
with headgear, cleated shoes, a
nose guard, and a spine protector.
He wants a regular football
to go with it.
He ' wants a model airplane.
He has described it minutely. It
has a wing spread of three feet;
Is built like a regular plane
and has a motor in it which will
carry It up and about for three
hundred feet. He understands
that I can get one for $8 or 9
not any more than that; he
thinks probably less!!
By EDGAR A. GUEST
pensire toy for which I hate
to step out of bounds or de
I know better. No one needs
to tell me that I am doing a
foolish thing. It would be better
for him, too, it I dealt with
him more wisely and less liber
ally. I do it for purely selfish
reasons I like the Joy of giving
him things. It Is selfgratlfica
ion purely. Somehow or other
l ha.-H a secret exultation ct
pride whenever I hear him shout
happily to his playmates:
'Oh, fellows, coire on ocr
ana ree tms Ame'inn ueaua's
baseball my father Just brought
home for me!"
There's no use denying it it
may not be for his good; they
may not last beyond the day, and
it is safe to add that most of
them will thave been, forgotten
before another Christmas rolls
around. These Christmas gifts,
however, will be to me symbols
of my love for him; symbols, in
a way, of the greater things I
would do if the power were mine.
I would not stop with toys this
Christmas. If 1 could give all
that I would like to bestow upon
him, I would equip him for life.
He has learned that Santa
Clans is his father, but if his fath
er could truly learn how to be
Santa Claus he would arrive at
Bud' bedside with a wonderful
would have been much happied.
The gift of good nature would
make; Bud patient with the little
shortcomings of his fellows; he
wonld hm not so wrapped up in
himself and his own ambitions
but what he coul remember and
understand the difficulties of
others. He would have time to
He's Just Plain "Eddie" Guest
Edgar A. Guest. "The Poet of the Plain People," Is "Eddie
Guest to an ever-growing host of friends. He was born in
Birmingham. England, and started his newspaper career as
office boy on the Detroit Free Press in 1895. Later he became
reporter, then got the exchange desk and the poetic urge sim
ultaneously. For a year or so afterwards he covered the
"crime beat" and wrote verse between fire alarms. Then be
was relieved, with orders to be funny at the rat of a column
a day His verse and humor were well received, for Eddie
knows his public with that Intimate knowledge of newspaper
men. The homely philosophy he expresses is applicable any
where and always meets ready response.
His first book of verse was privately printed in 10.rtth
the assistance of his brother, a printer. The partners had but
one case of type, and often after setting six pages of verse they
ran out of "e's" and had to wait till the sheets were run off and
the type distributed. They printed 800 slender volumes in
this fashion and in 1912 handled 1600 copies of "Just Glad
Things" In similar style.
In 1914. Detroit Rotarians urged him to publish 3500 copies
of his third volume. "Breakfast Table Chat." Brother Harry
superintended the Job. one Rotarian had the type set, another
handled the presswork. and a third put It through his bindery.
Eddie thought it a risky venture, but It PW ejpenaes.
A publisher caught the enthusiasm in 191 and brought
out "A Heap O' Livln" which went through eight editions in
twenty months. Since then three additional volumes of verse
have been published. . '
Between times he studied billiards, golf and human nature.
The ten-year-old son "Bud" has figured so frequently in Ed
die's verse that we wondered what his father would give him
for Christmas. This article Is the answer.
I would give him a will that ! ling to go Just as far for him that show him the. rtgb.rway.ta Urtl
should be firm enough to over
come obstacles', yet elastic enough
to yield to reason. A will that
would save him from the embar
rassments of too-ready assent to
the claims of specious fellowship;
yet one which would also be gra
cious enough to admit mistakes
! and nvr hl?nrtl nhatimta i
be friendly and time for the lit- j T could gQ QQ wUq tB; ,5st j
tie gracious acts of life which . fTirthpr Rn(, ,, afttA, .
make for comradeship. To stand j for these thlag3 BOr does ne j
iiuae ai ice lapmmi peak 01 cuo
he may be truly successful? To
me he must look for guidance and
help. From me must come his
training if he Is ever to know the
love of tnenas and ibe respect of
After all, these Christina wish
es of mine perhaps I can give to
him not ail this Christmas, but
through the Christmas days to
what men will expect and what
he may In honor graaCJ Tado
this may cost me ranch la per
sonal pleasure; much la" Utne
which I might spnd upon scr!.
much thought and self-dentaV but
like the toy, which I cannot well
afford, yet gladly give, extrava
gant though this expenditure ot
self may seem, I ahall gladly
come. Ferhaps I may be able to make the effort.
brings real league baseballs home
Read the Classified Ads.
He wants a new bicycle: and
several books which he has is good to ne mown
named and written down fori the small boys of your street
me. I o. ttio kind of a father who
He wants a drawing set, a
counle of rood games, and
Bnt whv eo on? The list I to nis son.
wouldn't be complete if I wrote! So thia Christmas i snauproD-
it all down. .Tomorrow there I aojy OTerdo the Santa, Claus act.
will be additions and before the I r snan give more than he ought
Rotartan can print this article t0 ntTe uj probably more than
the list will have grown several ih. reaHT appreciate. 1 ahall
feet. He will go right on want- I lnto the toy store to buy him
fng until Christmas Eve. and be-1 two, eood games, and
gin "wanting again the day after lind uo by buying several things
Sant haa mied his stocking. 1 Kfj.K ha hn.t .sked for. but
Lately ! have been thinking I h .trlkM me aa being things
aoeui iuuu' ui 1 u .in at mnm nle&aure out Ot.
alad ta rratifv- his whims and
wishes as far as possible. Giving
him what I can afford is my
best fun. ..Sometimes I have a
real thrill of pleasure by giving
him something Which is Just a
little beyond my. means, an ex-
lis " ' ' 11 -1 -" 11 1 J 1 - M'j
4 i - rum 1111 11 11 muni iniliiimMM n inn ir nn "'
' J- ' J ' ; ' '
lillllHP ! l 1
, "Giory be to Gd n
SjL y in the Highest j
M I -1 - rtl) v. Peace oh Earth, I j
I l(iL Im Good WMto J j
That's my weakness. So long as
I have money I cant escape the
ure of a toy shop. All the clerk
has to do la to show me some
thing Bud hasn't already had and
111 pay the price and have it
-ent home. Mother doesn't trust
me alone In a toy department any
more than a drunkard's wife
would send her inebriate husband
Into a blind pig to get a $10 bill
But what about Christmas and
Bud? It's time when the old
heart warms up a bit and seeks
to do for those it loves all that
It can for their happiness. Of
course the heart has to keep one
eye on the purse and the other
eye on the forty or fifty others
to be remembered also. How
ever, It is out to ao me nana
some and In the cases of the
children it will go the limit.
Personally I shall see to it
that Bud's Christmas stocking
will be filled. Mother and I will
talk it over and plan it out and
she'll put the brakes on my fool
ish Impulses', but at the end near.
ly everything for which he has
asked will be provided.
These are alt things which
money can buy. They are wish
es which, a little effort on my
pack on his back.
I would have In It all the big
traits of manhood. I would give
him. the gift of honor and the
gift of courage. He would take
from me the knowledge that no
gain and no goal is worth cheat
ing for. He would walk the
world fearing no man's voice. He
might fail and he might suffer
loss, but each morning would find
him head high and unashamed.
With the gift of courage I
would fit him for labor. He would
meet his duties calmly. What
ever his task he , would perform
it to the best of his ability, be
lieving in it, and believing also
that when he had proved bis
worth in one post. Life would
call him to another. I would
make him brave enough to take
defeat without being himself de
feated. Further, I would have
him gentle and modest in victory
and unspoiled by today's success
and unspoiled by today's success
for the work of tomorrow.
I -would give him a love of
books, good books. He would
look upon them as friends for a
lifetime. He would become their
friend and know their people.
They hold the wisdom of the ages
and are the truest of counselors.
He can turn to them at all times.
Their characters never change;
never ' play false; never die. He
who has good books is never
without help in times of trial.
I would give Bud also the gift
of good nature. This, of course,
is not necessary to success, but
it will smooth the way. Churls
have become famous men, great
artists and writers and painters
and poets and statesmen and rul
ers of the world, but they did so
not because they were churls but
in spite of the fact. They could
have been Just as great had they
quest may be fame, but it is not
a happy state.
I would give him a right value
of money. He would be neither
a slave to the dollar nor a de
spiser of it. He would have a
bank account and would know
that in that bank he was safe
guarding his self-respect. He
would grow to look upon his
money as the tangible evidence
of the fact that he had worked.
He would provide for himself and
for those dependent upon him all
that was necessary to comfort
and happiness, and against the
inevitable penalties of age he
would build bis safeguards. To
become old without provision is
the bitterest of all fates. But I
would not have him put into the
bank the money which he should
give away or the coins which
rightfully be spent. I would not
have him save the dollar which
would relieve the distress of a
poorer man. I would not have
his bank account grow great
while his soul shrivels. I should
hate to think that he could look
with pride upon a misers hoard
and not see within it the Joys
which be could and should have
given to those about him. I want
him to pay his way; to bear his
share of .life's expenses, to be
generous with others, and to be
saving after that.
I would give him the gift of
broad-mindedness. I would spare
him the petty narrowness of the
bigot. He would sneer at no
man's religion and enlarge upon
no man's faults. I would keep
him free from sin himself, but
tolerant with all who sin. He
would have understanding and
sympathy." He would know that
where he Is strong others may be i
weak, and where he is pitifully
weak others are strong. To be
really better than his neighbor
he must be kindlier and gentler
and truer and more patient.
Merely to be virtuous is not
enough. One can possess all the
virtues and still be despised. He
must respect the freedom of oth
ers and their right to live their
lives as they choose. He has
lived well who has set a good ex
ample to go beyond that is neith
er necessary nor kind.
I would give him the gift of
responsibility. I would have him
use his brains for thinking pur
poses. He would leave no task
unfinished, and spurn no little
task which he could do. He
would not measure his work by
the clock, but by his employer's
advantage. If he could advance
the Interests of his employer ever
so little by going out of his way.
that he would do. At least he
should never offer the excuse.
when failure came to him, "I
I would give him the gift of
reverence that he might willing'
ly pay his tribute to the sacred
things of life. Not. alone to those
things which have been especially
vested with a sacred character
through any special theology but
the reverence which readily re
sponds to any form of virtue, the
reverence which is a part of true
chivalry and is not to be dazzled
by mere display of ostentation
I would give him the gift of
health that he might never have
his character warped through
pain and suffering; that he might
rejoice in his youthful strength
and in muscles responding swiftly
to their tasks; that he might be
free of those petty hates and car
J ping fancies which are often the
know he needs them. Unfortu- j
nately there is a difference be-
tween wants and needs. What 1
he thinks he wants I can buy for
him; what I know he needs, I j
can only wish for. But having '
lived through many years of life ;
and knowing what shortly he will
have to face I want to see him I
If I were Santa Claus I would
give him all these gifts. He might
not know that he was receiving
them and might not know their
worth. But as I slipped them in- j
to the stocking of his mind I j
would whisper to him as he slept: j
"This, my boy, will bring you
safely through the perils of man
hood; thia will assure to you the!
respect of all; this little gift of
courage will enable you to rise
from failure to victory, and this
gift of honor will bring with it
the precious boon of. sleep."
Life is not hard to live if we
but knew it. Most ot the diffi
culties we encounter we ourselves
have made. If we could now
make a fresh start and wipe out
all the petty Jealousies we have
builded; destroy the false idols
of sham and pride and self-glorification
we have thrown up; if
we could forjret the lies we have
told and the meannesses we have
done, our bigotries and our hat
reds, and start anew to neighbor
here with one another, knowing
what we have now learned, how
different we should try to live.
And this is what I hope for Bud.
That he will come to the world
when it has need of him, ready
to do his best In its service; that
he shall know that as he shall
take so must he expect to give;
that he cannot injure his neigh
bor withoui dealing a much worse
injury to himself; that nothing
which afterwards must be lived
down is ever worth its profit In
gain or glory and that he alone
is responsible for his future.
These would be rich gifts to
give, and I can only wish that I
could bestow them. But the very
wish carries with it the realiza
tion that it Is my obligation. I
cannot be Santa Claus. I have
no magic powers. As his father
I am limited to the means within
my command. In so far as those
means go I conceive it to be my
duty to provide him with the
best equipment possible. Since
it is my pleasure extravagantly to
supply his wants from time to
time; since I gladly spend more
money than I should upon his
toys that he may be happy,
should I not stand ready and wil-
it and friends
OUR BEST wishes go forth
to you, at this the happiest
season of all the year.
Commercial Book Store
163 North Commercial Street
VeWKT wit iw Nrfcxna
part can supply. They may or been a little kinder and they outward signs of a sickly body,
1922 years ago this heavenly hymn yas sung
by the angels announcing that the "Saviou3M was
born to the Human Race.
God's century old promise was then fulfilled
to His pepple. Jesus Christ did arrive in accord
' ance with the prophets.
i Let us worshipfully and humbly observe the
memory of this grand and holy commencement,
J the arrival of Our Master and Teacher of Peace,
' Love and Truth.
May you all ever enjoy peace, happiness and
Bring to You the Fullest
The Salem Woolen Tills Store
C. P. BISHOP, Prop.
152 N. COM'L ST.
I Our Best Wishesjfor a
jill" Merry Christmas
305 STATE STREET
u-,- r-. --x&y,rwmit
Send your holiday greetings
by long-distance telephone
Service to all
points in the
intelligence. , 5mL1
167 N. Commercial St