The Taser's Edge

Let’s Get Visual! (Visual!)!

Two inspiring quotes from Robertson Davies’ World of Wonders.

The first part of the book (and the book’s title) is about a traveling Canadian carnival show, complete with an evangelizing (if there’s a politically correct way to say this, then I don’t know what it is) Fat Lady…

 This was Hannah’s strength.  All her immense bulk was crammed with Bible knowledge and quotations and it oozed out of her like current-juice oozing out of a jelly-bag.  She offered herself to the public as a Biblical marvel, a sort of she-Leviathan.  She would not allow Charlie to speak for her.  As soon as he had given her a lead – And now, ladies and gentleman, I present Happy Hannah, four hundred and eighty-seven pounds of good humour and chuckles – she would burst in, “Yes friends, and I’m the living proof of how fat a person can get and still bear it gladly in the Lord’s name.  I hope every person here knows his Bible and if they do, they know the comforting message of Proverbs eleven, twenty-five: The liberal soul shall be made fat.  Yes friends, I am here not as a curiosity and not as a monstrosity but to attest in my daily life and my public career to the Lord’s abounding grace.  I don’t hafta be here; many offers from missionary societies and the biggest evangelists have been turned down in order that I may get around this whole continent and talk to the biggest possible audience of the real people, God’s own folks, and attest to the Faith.  Portraits of me as you see me now, each one individually autographed by my own hand, may be purchased at twenty-five cents apiece, and for another mere quarter I will include a priceless treasure, this copy of the New Testament which fits in the pocket and in which each and every word uttered by our Lord Jesus Christ during his earthly ministry is printed in RED.  No Testament sold except with a portrait.  Don’t miss this great offer which is made by me at a financial sacrifice in order that the Lord’s will may be done more abundantly here in Pumpkin Centre.  Don’t hang back folks; grab what I’m giving to you; I been made fat and when you possess this portrait of me as you see me now and this New Testament you’ll hafta admit that I’m certainly the Liberal Soul.  Come on, now, who’s gonna be the first?

And later describing a step up in life and accommodations for a traveling theater company:

Oh, those cheap hotels!  I stayed in the cheapest, where one electric bulb hung from a string in the middle of the room, where the sheets were like cheesecloth, and where the mattresses – when they were revealed as they usually were after a night’s restless sleep – were like maps of strange worlds, the continents being defined by strange stains, doubtless traceable to the incontinent dreams of travelling salesmen, or the rapturous deflowerings of brides from the backwoods.

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