Glass by Col. Stoopnagle

            One of the nicest things I know of to look through, besides a book, is glass, especially if it's transparent.  Take a window, for instance.  Just for fun, sometime, stand in a room and look toward the garden through the brick wall.  What do you see?  Flowers?  Shrubbery?  No.  You see a brick wall.  Now shift over to the window and look toward the garden.  What do you see?  Flowers?  Shrubbery?  No.  Why?  Because you've got the shade pulled down.

            We owe a great deal to the glass-maker, not only because we haven't paid our last three bills, but because he spends his whole time fusing silica with lead oxide.  I have tried personally time and again to fuse what I just said and it always comes out goo.  But while we are praising the glass-maker, we must, in fairness, censure him, too.  When his product is broken, it tends to puncture tires, and though they're only flat on the bottom, the bottom is the part we use most in driving on them.  Furthermore, when his product is made into containers for liquid, that liquid is frequently alcohol, and alcohol causes inebriation, which in turn makes for hilarity.  This very hilarity makes people throw the same glasses which contained the alcohol that was in the glasses that the glass-maker made, and the broken pieces resulting puncture tires.  So if it weren't for the glass-maker, we'd have to do our drinking from cupped hands.  If you've ever tried to hold a tall highball with ice and fizz-water in your bare hands, you'll thank your lucky stars for the silica-fusers.

            Glass is used for making us see better, but what I'll never understand, I hope, is the "invisible" glass they're using now.  They do tell me that optometrists* are going crazy every day looking for their stock of invisible glass.  They can't find it.  If it weren't invisible, they could find it, but then it wouldn't be "invisible glass".  Things are tough all over.

            They are making one-way glass now, too, you know.  When the cops have you in the station-house, a detective stands behind a glass door.  He can see you, but you can't see him.  You're the lucky one, because he's pretty ugly anyhow.  THis one-way glass is made by workmen especially selected for their knack of seeing but one side of an argument.  Personally, they give me a pane in the knack.

            Glass is sometimes used for finding little boys' baseballs on the broken other side of. 

*An optometrist is a man who is always looking on the bright side of rose-colored glasses. 

[From ?, “Vest Pocket Essays,” circa 1940's]


Page created November 14, 2006.  Copyright 1998-2006 by Richard D. Squires.