The Worlds Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes. 1906. Vols. IV: American
Miss Malony on the Chinese Question
By Mary Mapes Dodge (18311905)
OCH! dont be talkin. Is it howld on, ye say? An didnt I howld on till the heart of me was clane broke entirely, and me wastin that thin you could clutch me wid yer two hands! To think o me toilin like a nager for the six year Ive been in Amerikybad luck to the day I iver left the owld counthry, to be bate by the likes o them! (faix, an Ill sit down when Im ready, so I will, Ann Ryan, an yed better be listnin than drawin your remarks), an its mysel, with five good characters from respectable places, would be herdin wid the haythens. The saints forgive me, but Id be buried alive soon n put up wid a day longer. Sure, an I was a granehorn not to be lavin at onct when the missus kim into me kitchen wid her perlaver about the new waiter-man which was brought out from Californy.
Hell be here the night, says she, and Kitty, its meself looks to you to be kind and patient wid him, for hes a furriner, says she, a kind o looking off. Sure an its little Ill hinder nor interfare wid him nor any other, mum, says I, kind o stiff, for I minded me how these French waiters, wid their paper collars and brass rings on their fingers, isnt company for no gurril brought up dacint and honest. Och! sorra a bit I knew what was comin till the missus walked into me kitchen smilin, and says, kind o schared, Heres Fing Wing, Kitty, an youll have too much sinse to mind his bein a little strange. Wid that she shoots the doore; and I, misthrusting if I was tidied up sufficient for me fine buy wid his paper collar, looks up and Holy fathers! may I never brathe another breath, but there stud a rale haythen Chineser a-grinnin like hed just come off a tay-box. If youll belave me, the crayture was that yeller it ud sicken you to see him; and sorra stich was on him but a black night-gown over his trousers, and the front of is head shaved claner nor a copper biler, and a black tail a-hanging down from behind, wid his two feet stook into the heathenestest shoes you ever set eyes on. Och! but I was up-stairs afore you could turn about, a-givin the missus warnin; an only stopt wid her by her raisin me wages two dollars and playdin wid me how it was a Christians duty to bear wid haythins and taitch em all in our powerthe saints save us! Well, the ways and trials I had wid that Chineser, Ann Ryan, I couldnt be tellin. Not a blissed thing cud I do but hed be lookin on wid his eyes cocked upard like two poomp-handles, an he widdout a speck or a smitch o whiskers on him, and his finger-nails full a yard long. But its dying youd be to see the missus a-larnin him, and he grinnin an waggin his pig-tail (which was pieced out long wid some black stoof, the haythen chate!), and gettin into her ways wonderful quick, I dont deny, imitatin that sharp, youd be shurprised, and ketchin and copyin things the best of us will do a-hurried wid work yet dont want comin to the knowledge of the familybad luck to him!
Is it ate wid him? Arrah, an would I be sittin wid a haythen, and he a-atin wid drumsticksyes, an atin dogs an cats unknownst to me, I warrant you, which is the custom of them Chinesers, till the thought made me that sick I could die. An didnt the crayture proffer to help me a wake ago come Toosday, an me a foldin down me clane clothes for the ironin, an fill his haythen mouth wid water, an afore I could hinder squrrit it through his teeth stret over the best linen table-cloth and fold it up tight, as innercent now as a baby, the dirty baste! But the worrest of all was the copyin hed be doin, till yed be distracted. Its yerself knows the tinder feet thats on me since ever Ive bin in this counthry. Well, owin to that, I fell into the way o slippin me shoes off when Id be settin down to pale the praties or the likes o that, and, do ye mind, that haythin would do the same thing after me whiniver the missus set him parin apples or tomaterses. The saints in heaven couldnt have made him belave he cud kape the shoes on him when hed be payling anything.
Did I lave fur that? Faix an didnt he get me into trouble wid my missus, the haythin? Youre aware yerself how the boondles comin from the grocery often contains morenll go into anything dacently. So, for that matter, Id now and then take out a sup o sugar, or flour, or tay, an wrap it in paper and put it in me bit of a box tucked under the ironin blankit the how it cuddent be bodderin any one. Well, what should it be, but this blessed Sathurday morn the missus was a-spakin pleasant and respecful wid me in me kitchen, when the grocer boy comes in an stands fornenst her wid his boondles, an she motions like to Fing Wing (which I never would call him by that name nor any other but just haythin); she motions to him, she does, for to take the boondles an empty out the sugar an what not where they belongs. If youll belave me, Ann Ryan, what did that blatherin Chineser do but take out a sup o sugar, an a handful o tay, an a bit o chaze, right afore the missus, wrap them into bits o paper, an I spacheless wid shurprise, an he the next minute up wid the ironin blankit and pullin out me box wid a show o bein sly to put them in. Och, the Lord forgive me, but I clutched it, and the missus sayin, O Kitty! in a way that ud curdle your blood. Hes a haythin nager, says I. Ive found you out, says she. Ill arrist him, says I. Its you ought to be arristed, says she. You wont, says I. I will, says she; and so it went, till she give me such sass as I cuddent take from no lady, an I give her warnin an left that instant, an she a-pointin to the doore.