صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

SOMETHING BETTER.

341

I returned to England soon after this, without going to see the turn-out at St. Omer's, and though I seldom object to raise a laugh at my own expense, I must candidly allow I never mentioned my hunting expedition with the baron, when two days after landing I met the King's Hounds, at Stoke; nor was I more communicative among the yellow capes at Gerard's Cross when I met them. Poor Tom! thine and many a gallant heart of that hunt has ceased to beat since then. "Sic transit,foc., &c.

A FEW REMARKS ON TRAINING

RACE-HORSES.

I BELIEVE it will be allowed by most persons (excepting those immediately interested in denying it) that there is a very considerable portion of mystification, not to say deception, practised in all trades and professions. « There are tricks in all trades” is an adage nearly as old as the tricks themselves. I pay the tricks the compliment of giving them precedence in point of seniority, as I conclude their practice gave origin to the adage.

To enumerate the different sort of tricks practised in the different pursuits of making money would, when relating to each particular trade or profession, first require the space of a very respectable folio volume, and secondly, require the enumerator and describer of them to have served a close apprenticeship to that particular pursuit; and then unless he had kept both his eyes and ears open, he would not be au fait de son métier.

We will, to make as short work as possible of the subject now in hand, classify these tricks under the following heads :

Tricks to make a great appearance of business when, in truth, there is but little doing: these tricks are pretty much in vogue now every where, but more particularly so in London; this leads to a very considerable consumption of large panes of plate-glass for windows, marble fronts and gilt letters on the outside, Turkey carpets, splendid mirrors, and a host of white cra

THE SUPPLIER AND THE SUPPLIED.

343

ICO

vated young gentlemen inside, a temporary considerable increase of the income tax to be in keeping with appearances, and also to considerable employment of the attention of Messrs. Commissioners Bruce, Fane, and Fonblanque.

Tricks to get the greatest possible sums of money from our pockets, for the least possible equivalent in point of value, are not only in considerable practice in London, but are liberally diffused all over the world, by those seeking to make money whether in trade or professionally; there is, however, a very considerable difference in the way in which the same desideratum on the part of the supplier is effected as regards the supplied. The tradesman gives as little as possible of any thing, both in quality and quantity. Our legal adviser gives as little as possible, in point of quantity, of time, words, or writing, for a given sum; but in justice to him, we must allow that what he gives is effectual, and to the (that is his) purpose. Our medical friend is in no way niggard of his attentions in regard to their frequency, he only has us as to their duration ; such friends "come like shadows, so depart.” The balm of life they send us is never deficient in quantityit is by the quantity they live; whether we do the same thing by the quality is another affair. One thing must, to their honour, be allowed : a considerable portion of their balm does neither good nor harm in its effects.

Of this innocuous quality, the balm for our minds distributed once a week by our spiritual guardians often largely partakes: where it does, charity should induce us to hope and believe it is in point of quality the very best they have to give. From those to whom much is given, much might be expected. This I

344

LIVE AND LET LIVE.

apprehend, means when what is given and what is expected is of the same kind; for it in no shape follows that where much money is given, much sense is to be expected in return. Here charity again teaches us not to be unreasonable in our expectations of sense ; and charity has had too many lessons to be very sanguine in her anticipations of any great return in money for her use.

Then there are mystification tricks. Now these are in a great degree harmless, and perhaps even justifiable; for, as few men can learn any business without a considerable outlay of time and money, it is natural enough that they should wish to make their business appear as complicated and as difficult of attainment as possible. “Live, and let live,” is a common if not a very refined mode of expressing a particular feeling among persons connected with tradle. This, I believe, means that the carpenter should not do a job that it is the particular province of the joiner to execute; in short, that no trade should interfere with another. So the tradesman will, in the generosity of his heart, allow his customers to live; and so long as he gets anything out of them, he is quite desirous that they should live; but unless the customer takes care of himself, the other will leave him but very little to live upon.

Let a gentleman, or any man not engaged in a trade, attempt to do or get done anything without the innmediate interference of “the trade,” every earthly manæuvre will be put in practice to thwart him; the very day-labourer will be influenced by the “live and let live” feeling, and will do about one-fifth of the same labour in the day for the gentleman, to that he would do for the tradesman; and as to the former

[blocks in formation]

getting any assistance or information likely to expedite his wishes, it is absolutely out of the question ; he will be plagued, misled, and if he will permit it, “ fooled to the top of his bent."

This is put in practice to the utmost extent, should a man attempt to train his own horses, if he or his horses are worth the professional trainer’s notice. This might not, and probably would not be done from any dislike to, or a wish to injure the indi vidual, but from a determination to prevent such a practice gaining ground; the trainer, therefore, mystifies the thing so much, talks so much of the difficulties of bringing out a horse in proper form, and takes care to let so little of the secrets of his profession escape him, that thousands of sportsmen who are cognisant of the nature of every description of sport, know as little about training a race-horse as they do of catching a wild-horse with the lasso ; and yet a very little more knowledge and observation than is required to bring the hunter of the present day into that state that puts him quite up to the mark, to go his first day's hunting over Leicestershire, as hounds go now, would put a horse in form to go the Beacon Course, the Ditch-in, or across the Flat. We must have wind, speed, and bottom, for all these exertions ; the only nicety therefore is, to consider whether for a particular exertion we want most wind, speed, or lasting qualities; and when we have ascertained this point, we have to ascertain by close observation the mode of treatment that appears to bring the particular horse we have in hand into the state we want him, and this can only be truly ascertained by closely observing how that treatment affects him.

If a man is not a perfect judge of perfect condition

« السابقةمتابعة »