Around Theatres - Vol. 2

Around Theatres - Vol. 2

Around Theatres - Vol. 2

Around Theatres - Vol. 2

Excerpt

November 14, 1903 .

"AN octogenarian in the hunting-field" is the title of annual paragraphs in the daily press. Annually one reflects that "an octogenarian in bed" were better news. One may be wrong. There are men incapable even of growing old--men so insignificant that Time overlooks them. Let such men pursue foxes even to the brinks of their own graves. As with the body, so with the mind. There are they who never cease to be intellectually receptive. A new idea, or a new movement, appears in their senile course, and lightly they "take" it, undaunted by the five bars or so, and gallop on. One admires them as showy exceptions to the law of nature. But one knows that they could not be so receptive if in their youth and prime they had ever deeply understood, or felt strongly, anything. They are shallow, and they are cynics these genial old souls. What shall be said of those others who, having long ago exhausted their curiosity and keenness, do yet, in sheer vanity, pretend themselves keen and curious? How graceless an eld is theirs! See them riding to the meet, laced and stayed to a semblance of jauntiness! See them furtively leading their horses through the gaps, and piping, at last, a husky "view holloa" over the fallen fox! (Any reader who is also a sportsman will amend my metaphor if it is wrong.) Such impostors deserve no mercy from us. To us the prejudices of eld are sacred, and should be yet more sacred to their holders. I, for one, in the fulness of time, shall make no secret of them. I am too closely in touch with things now, too glad and eager, to be elastic in the dim future, and as for pretending to be elastic . . . no! I

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