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In The Next Cage

In The Next Cage image
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In a hilarious mood a tal I man with a theatricil makeup entered the postoffice. It was early morning and the corridors were almost deserted. As he slowly passed through the building on the ground floor he gave evidence that he was or had boen a shouter Lor the side shovr of a circus. There was mischief in his eye as be glanced toward a window behind vrhich a clerk sat. "In this cage," he exclaimed in deep, sonorous tones, as if addressing an audience of ciirious and expectant people, "you will flnd that melancholy beast the laughing hyeua. This animal roams about the prairies in the night, and there he laughs and laughs and laughs, but what ou earth he is laughing at nobody has been able to flnd out. "Pass along, pass along, but do iiot press against the ropes. You have ampie time to view all the curiosities bef ore the great 3how begins." Scores of clerks, attracted by the unusual noise, hurried to the little Windows and poked out their heads. This pleased the tall man immensel3' and he laughed immoderately. "In the next cage," resumed the orator as he proceeded on nis way, "is the far faed Rocky Mountain goat, which leaps from peak to peak and skips from erag to orag, ever and anon uttering that plaintive cry, 'Baa! ba.a!' " Then another liead was thrust out of an opening, and the tall man, with a sweeping wave of the hand said, "Thank you, sir; that willdo." "In the next cage," continued the mirthful man, "you will perceive the gigantic rocodildo, who, when he eats, eats seventeen different kinds of food, always concluding his repast by devouring a bale of hay. "Thank you, thank you, sir; you are behaving nicely, nicely. "Passalong, passalong, ladies and gents; but bear in mind and remember you have ampie, ampie time to see all the curiosities beforc the show in the great pavilion opens." Gradually the tall humorist made bis way around the corridors, his voice losing none of its volume or streneth. Meanwhile the commotion in the postoffice departmenfc was increasing. Every window was occupied by one or more clerks, with buiging eyes and necks craned to catch a glimpse of the daring, practical joker. Everybody had a chance tosee him, forhe did notdeny himself to anybody. This is what one group heard as he carne into view: "In the next cage are the mighty boa constrictors, whose bite is worse than death and whose strength is crushing. In the smaller cages on the right are other rare reptiles brought f rom remote tropical regiĆ³os, where one day they lived and flonrished. Twice a year these snakes shed their skins. They feed upon birds, frogs and guinea pigs." By that time the loungers in the building were enjoying the sport highly, but how the clerks feit is not known. As the stranger neared the last door at the upper end of the Broadway side he turned toward another "cage" and exclairaed: "In the next cage you will see Old Tom feeding the Polar bear his daily meal of broken ice. This ice is expressly imported by us from the arctic regions at enormous expense and" At that moment the watchman made his presence known, and the joker was forced to cease joking; but as he went out of the door he fired this shot, which was evidently infcended to hit the watchman: "Little Jocko will now ascend the ladder, turning a complete somersault at each and every round." Then ths swinging doors closed behi nd


Old News
Ann Arbor Argus