The Project Gutenberg EBook of Frenzied Fiction, by Stephen Leacock

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Title: Frenzied Fiction

Author: Stephen Leacock

Release Date: July 28, 2009 [EBook #8457]
Last Updated: October 26, 2016

Language: English







Produced by Gardner Buchanan, and David Widger








FRENZIED FICTION



By Stephen Leacock





CONTENTS


I.   My Revelations as a Spy

II.   Father Knickerbocker: A Fantasy

III.   The Prophet in Our Midst

IV.   Personal Adventures in the Spirit World

V.   The Sorrows of a Summer Guest

VI.   To Nature and Back Again

VII.   The Cave-Man as He is

VIII.   Ideal Interviews

     I.   WITH A EUROPEAN PRINCE

     II.   WITH OUR GREATEST ACTOR

     III.    WITH OUR GREATEST SCIENTIST

     IV.   WITH OUR TYPICAL NOVELISTS

IX.   The New Education

X.   The Errors of Santa Claus

XI.   Lost in New York

XII.   This Strenuous Age

XIII.   The Old, Old Story of How Five Men Went Fishing

XIV.   Back from the Land

XV.   The Perplexity Column as Done by the Jaded Journalist

XVI.   Simple Stories of Success, or How to Succeed in Life

XVII.   In Dry Toronto

XVIII.     Merry Christmas









I. My Revelations as a Spy

In many people the very name “Spy” excites a shudder of apprehension; we Spies, in fact, get quite used to being shuddered at. None of us Spies mind it at all. Whenever I enter a hotel and register myself as a Spy I am quite accustomed to see a thrill of fear run round the clerks, or clerk, behind the desk.

Us Spies or We Spies—for we call ourselves both—are thus a race apart. None know us. All fear us. Where do we live? Nowhere. Where are we? Everywhere. Frequently we don’t know ourselves where we are. The secret orders that we receive come from so high up that it is often forbidden to us even to ask where we are. A friend of mine, or at least a Fellow Spy—us Spies have no friends—one of the most brilliant men in the Hungarian Secret Service, once spent a month in New York under the impression that he was in Winnipeg. If this happened to the most brilliant, think of the others.

All, I say, fear us. Because they know and have reason to know our power. Hence, in spite of the prejudice against us, we are able to move everywhere, to lodge in the best hotels, and enter any society that we wish to penetrate.

Let me relate an incident to illustrate this: a month ago I entered one of the largest of the New York hotels which I will merely call the B. hotel without naming it: to do so might blast it. We Spies, in fact, never name a hotel. At the most we indicate it by a number known only to ourselves, such as 1, 2, or 3.