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"Thank you," said the attendant, closing your success," he said. “Some day I hope his fingers around her offering. “Eight
"Eight you can be happy in mine." o'clock.'
“He came three times on pay days just With the buoyant step of youth, Mary to see my picture! I wouldn't feel half so went back to the Barker Building where, important if he'd come on free days! I taking off her hat, she cried long enough to wonder if I'm going to be famous! I can assure herself that it was all coming true, brag a little to you, can't I?” just as she had hoped. She was thinking of “I'm bragging about you to myself," Kibbey when his footsteps echoed down
said Kibbey. the hall.
As they approached the fatal alcove, He knocked and came in jovially. Mary was seized with fright. “Mary!” he said. “Mary! What's hap- “Don't worry, little girl," urged Kibbey. pened?”
"It's a plain business transaction. Just "12" she said, “I-I've got a bite!” tell him the price.” “Not your picture?”
“It's another year in New York," she She nodded. “Yes—I can't believe it chattered. “A-a thousand dollars. It myself, but it's true! The man's crazy cost me that much. Oh, my hands are so about it-he says it's a jewel! Think of cold!” it!” Her face was radiant. “Think of Before the “Portrait of a Lady” a generit!”
ous-looking elderly gentleman leaned on a He took her hands and held then cane while he discussed the downward reclosely. “Congratulations, Mary Ann, vision of the wool tariff with the attendant. he said quietly. “You worked hard-you “That's he!" gasped Mary Ann. "I earned your success. There's no question know it!” of the sale?”
The connoisseur heard her, turned, and at “No-it's not a bite. He wants it-he a word from the attendant came forward. says it's a jewel! It's more than a bite—it's “Miss Atherton?" said the elderly genpractically sold this minute. Isn't it won- tleman briskly. “Good! You're here! derful?"
I understand you're the owner of some “It is wonderful. Do you know, though, property I want to buy. Now I don't hagwhat time it is, Mary Ann? Dinner time, gle and I don't bicker. In the first senand you're dining with me. It's the last tence—what's the price?” day of the exhibition, you know. Had you Mary hoped that she wouldn't faint beforgotten your promise?"
fore she told him; by the grace of her pride “ "Oh-no." Her elation was tempered she summoned half her courage, and spoke by sudden pity. "You'll go around with the words. me, won't you? It's partly your picture, “The price is—five hundred dollars.'' anyway-you lent me all the properties.” “You said a thousand!” hissed Kibbey in “Of course I'll go. And shall we dine
her ear. now?"
“It's high-much too high-but I'll take “Yes-my gloves. All right, sir! You it,” said the elderly gentleman. “When ought to feel very grand-going out with
deliver it?” a real artist!”
“You can carry it home if you like,” said They dined where the music was to their Mary, essaying a feeble smile, although her liking, and the food endurable. Afterward, knees were wofully weak. “This is the last during the brief journey to the gallery, night-I can have it taken down for you.” Kibbey found Mary's hand on his arm, and "Oh," the elderly gentleman said, "I was astonished to feel it tremble.
see! You're talking about the picture. “I'm so nervous,” she said. “My heart Hang it, madam, I don't want the picture. won't keep still, and my soul is hurting me! I'm not a picture-collector-I want to buy I wish I could tell you how I feel."
the rug!” "I can imagine, Mary Ann."
There was a terrible thickness in the at“You've been such a dear," she whis- mosphere, and the room began to turn slow pered, squeezing his arm a little. “You do circles and grow dim and shadowy. Mary understand, don't you? You're willing to forced a pathetic little smile, and put out wait a little while-until I've done some- her hands to Kibbey. thing better?"
"You tell him," she said shakily. "IKibbey spoke gently. “I'm happy in
E are no longer ambitious for saint- would have been far more waterproof
hood, but we still love an aureole. and wind-proof than our present fuzz, to
We don't fancy the looks of our say nothing of much less trouble to keep chaste and classic features unsurrounded in order. by a halo of hair. The picture made by the From a strictly artistic point of view the most beautiful face, the most exquisitely average human thatch could hardly be rechiseled features, is unpleasing and even re- garded as a thing of beauty and a joy forpulsive to our conventional eye unless set in ever-certainly not in its earliest stages, a frame of tresses, be they curly or wavy, when it was a reddish or rusty mat of gray or gold. It is usually ascribed to our kinky wool. Indeed, it is only by the most ideas of beauty and ornament, but one can- painstaking and ingenious treatment that not help suspecting that this explanation most of our “mops” can be made attractive was put forward largely because the ex- or tolerable even today. We rave over the plainer was at his wits’ end and couldn't sunbeams entangled in the glittering meshes think of anything else to suggest. The of golden hair, or the dusky splendor of stuff is obviously not useful. It must there- raven tresses, but forget that such glorious fore be an ornament, ran his logic.
lights and colors are seen on only about one Just how our obstinate, irrational prej- head in a thousand, and that at least twoudice in favor of a hirsute halo around our thirds of the remainder are neither raven face grew up is a mystery. It certainly nor golden, blond nor brunette, but varying was not based upon utilitarian grounds, for shades of plain mud-color. all purposes of protection and warmth would However, the united wisdom of humanity have been much more effectually served by has decided that hair is beautiful-or at a close, compact, mossy thatch, half or least that its absence is distinctly unbeauthree-quarters of an inch in length. This tiful-and therefore we must regard it as
such, and make up our minds to get as one, to one line of our campaign of prevenmuch of it as possible.
tion, and that is keeping the body in general But the problem which confronts us as and the scalp in particular in as perfect a hair-growers is a perplexing one. We don't condition of health and vigor as possible, so know why hair grew in the first place, we that there will be plenty of rich blood to don't know what useful functions it now nourish the hair-glands and stimulate them serves, and last but not least, we are re- to produce strong, vigorous hair-buds to quired to render beautiful something which fill the places of those that are constantly often has few possibilities of beauty in it. falling. Even when the length and glossiStill the situation is far from discouraging ness of the hair have already begun to fail, practically, because most of us have a on account of anemia or some other imfairly good "thatch” to begin with, and poverished condition of the blood, it is posthough we would be delighted with any at- sible so to build up the general health as to tainable improvement, we will be quite produce a better and handsomer type of hair satisfied if we can succeed in holding onto at the next crop. You need not worry beour original possessions.
cause your hair is falling out fairly freely, Our hair may not be ravishingly beauti- if only it is coming in again as fast as it falls. ful, but so long as we can keep it from wear- Some of the best and glossiest heads, indeed, ing through in spots we are fairly content. shed or fall out quite rapidly and freely, but We are usually in a complaisant frame of keep up their freshness and beauty by a mind in regard to our own locks, be they rapid and constant renewal. Indeed, with never so stringy, or whispy, as the old lady the exception of hereditary baldness, it may of Kansas was in regard to the meal which be broadly stated that in the great majority she had hospitably prepared for unexpected of cases, anyone who will keep him or herguests: “There is plenty of it such as it is, self in a fairly fit and healthy condition that is, it's good what there is of it!" So and the scalp clean, will be likely to have long as we are protected from the cry of fairly abundant, glossy, and durable hair. derision, “Go up, thou baldhead!” the rest Most people can distinctly improve their is a mere matter of detail.
hair, both in appearance and permanence, Of course there are not a few who would by taking good and intelligent care of their fain adorn, embellish, blondine, marcel, or health and habits. If you want your hair otherwise improve their despised tresses- to stand by you, the first and most imporand what can be done for these will be duly tant thing is to stand by it-by giving it a considered; but the vast majority of those sturdy and wholesome body as a stalk for who are earnestly concerned about the state it to grow on.
There are, of course, many of their hair, and seek the path of capillary exceptions to this rule, and oddly enough, it salvation, are anxious only to hang on to does not always work the other way. It what hair they have, and will be perfectly has long been a matter of observation that satisfied if but they can literally hold their some of those who are delicate in youth, and own.
especially the victims of consumption, have The first problem, then, of the practical superb and abundant heads of lustrous and hair-grower is how to keep a good stand, or beautiful hair. With the majority of concrop, of the particular brand of hair which sumptives, of course, as with people sufferis indigenous upon the cranium under con- ing from other severe chronic illnesses, the sideration. To make the problem per- hair deteriorates along with the other tisfectly clear, we must remember that it is sues of the body, and becomes dry and thin not a question of making any particular and lusterless. hair or head of haits stay on indefinitely, Obviously, if our hair "dies daily," it is for our hairs are continually being shed and impossible to improve its permanence by replaced all our lives long. The most vener- doing anything to the hairs which have able and Methuselah-like hair upon our head grown out to their full length and are alat any given time is probably not more than ready “ripening for the tomb." Clipping, a few months or, at the outside, one or two singeing, curling, smearing the hair with years old. Our problem is simply to insure ointments or pomades-in fact, any kind of that, as the old hairs fall, their places will be treatment applied to full-grown hair in the promptly taken by an equal number of new hope of stopping it from coming out or makand vigorous ones.
ing it stay on longer has about as much efThis gives us a clue, and an important fect as if applied to the tips of our fing,
nails to make our hands slender, or rubbed
The human hair is an indoor plant, on the soles of our boots to increase our
a hothouse exotic almost, which has height. The only place where applica
been carefully kept under cover for tions can be made which will have any hundreds of generations. To attempt effect upon the future of the hair is at to restore it suddenly to its supposed the roots, and their influence even there natural environment by going bareis astonishingly slight.
headed is about as rational as suddenly The question of origins, theoretic and turning a canary-bird out of its cage into transcendental as it may seem, is really of a London fog, or a tropical parrakeet out great practical importance in dealing with of doors in a snow-storm. The scalp rethe problems of hair-growing and bald- quires, of course, the same amount of ness. If we only knew why hair is, we air and light as does the rest of the surshould be able to make a much better face of the body, but that anything beguess as to why it isn't. If we were at all yond this will be of the slightest benefit certain what influences brought it into to it we have no reason to believe. Inexistence in the beginning and what use- deed, our practical results show clearly ful functions it now performs, we should that too much exposure to either sun, know what to do to restore its vigor when wind, or cold does more harm than it begins to fail. But alas! we don't.
good—though, of course, the more we Of almost every other tissue and organ can live an outdoor life and the more perin the body we know the function and fectly pure and sweet we can keep the how it works, so that all we have to air in our houses, the better it will be for do to improve its vigor is to feed it well the scalp, together with the rest of the and then give it work to do within its pow- body. ers-exercise it, in fact. But we can't But it is not necessary to make any exercise the hair, because we don't know violent and radical changes in our habits what work it does in the body. As far as or surroundings in order to preserve our we are able to judge, it is purely ornamental hair, and the impression, widespread and —and not a howling success at that in most deep rooted though it is, that the conditions of us. As already suggested, it will neither of modern civilization are specially unfavorturn rain, keep off sun, nor deaden the force able and injurious to the hair is almost enof a blow to any appreciable degree. In tirely unfounded. Our hair, such as it is, fact, for all these protective purposes the has survived equally unfavorable—indeed, short, compact double coat of our prehuman for the most part far worse-conditions ancestors was far superior. But for at least than any which it is called upon to face two to five thousand years past our hair today. Never, in fact, has human hair has exercised no protective function of any had as good a chance for life, liberty, and importance; indeed, it has been almost
the pursuit of happiness as in this twentieth constantly protected from the weather by century. either a roof or a hat, helmet, turban, or Our savage forebears piled it up into other headgear.
bird's-nests and shakos and haystacks, filled It is therefore irrational to suppose that it with mud, smeared it with ocher, and by going bareheaded in all weathers
plastered it with rancid grease and we shall revive the failing vigor of
oils. Our more than half-savage our hair. The only crop that going
fathers of the middle ages stewed it bareheaded usually succeeds in rais
under iron pots called helmets, or ing upon a denuded scalp is one
filthy caps of fur and felt, filled of blisters, while often the fierce
it with powder and drenched heat and light of the sun de
it with musk and civet, selstroys what little vitality is left
dom brushed it, and never, in falling hair.
never gave it a bath except inFor the same reason, all attempts
voluntarily when swimming across to account for baldness in civilized
a river in the flight from a lost races by tightfitting and ill-venti
battle, when they ducked their heads lated hats or by indoor habits, or to
under water to escape the arrows or stop its progress by wearing soft hats
slugs of the pursuing enemy. Even instead of chimney-pots, or caps instead fine ladies often wore the same headdress of derbies, is entirely beside the mark. or coiffeure for ten days at a stretch, and
If you want your hair to stand by you, the first and most important thing is to stand by it.
cides. It means giving it a sturdy body as a stalk for it to grow on
openly carried beautifully carved, long- both fields; namely, keep the soil clean! handled, three-clawed scratching-forks, with First, keep the seeds of the weeds out, and which to relieve their tortured scalps. second, keep the soil so constantly stirred up While as for population, the most thickly that those which do get in will have no settled modern scalp is as a howling wilder- chance to catch a foothold. For none of dess, a comb-swept desert, to a city slum, the animal, and very few of the vegetable, compared with the swarming myriads of or germ, parasites which attack our scalp the average seventeenth-century scalp. fly into it of their own accord, or are carried Here is one place at least where depopu- in in currents of air, or even in dust or showlation and the decay of ancient civilization ers of accidental dirt. The overwhelming need excite no regret, and where a falling majority are planted there either by perbirth-rate has no terrors.
sonal contact with an infected person, This brings us to the next great problem or by dirty and infected brushes, combs, of hair-raising—that is, keeping the soil free caps, pillows, or garments. So that, as the from weeds and insects. Here the prin- old proverb puts it, "we cannot help the ciples of successful hair-raising are really birds' flying over our heads, but we can keep amusingly similar to those which apply to them from building nests in our hair.” other crops. One simple requirement covers As a beginning, don't wear other peon!