The Day the Ghost Walks
by W. E. Johnson
In factory parlance, pay day is the day that "the ghost walks."
Pay day is a day of reckoning for the grocer who balances his weekly accounts with Smith, Flanagan, Campbell and Harrison and Davis and Mulligan.
There are others that the grocer is not quite so certain about, for on pay day the "ghost walks" in those families.
Pay day is the day that the landlord and rental agent write out receipts for Hanrahan and Rhodes and Loomis and Mitchell and others. But there are certain ones that he looks out after, because in those families, pay day is the day the "ghost walks."
In some families in Workingtown, pay day is a day of gladness. Alice rubs her nose against the windows, waiting for "Dad," because she is sure of a new dress and a bag of candy.
In the house down the lane, pay day is the day of fear and trembling. Little Hortense crawls under the bed, and mother, with reddened eyes, looks anxiously into the glimmering shades. In that family, pay day is the day that the "ghost walks."
The father of Hortense is having his "time" at the "poor man's club" around the corner. He is beginning to reel and sway and curse and open his pocketbook upon the bar.
The ghost is "walking."
In the grey dawn of the morning, he staggers home, bruised, beaten and penniless. The shrinking, shivering shadows of the hovel hide in the closets and the garrett.
For the "ghost is walking."
In the "all night" saloon down the side street, there is a shriek. Some one is stabbed and hurry calls are sent in for the police. A pay day father is sweltering in his own blood while another pay day father is being dragged to the calaboose amid hoots and cries for a "rope."
It is the "ghost walking."
In the new psychology, the licensed saloon is the "medium" which summons the shades of darkness and causes these "ghosts to walk."
Does the "ghost walk" in your town 'on pay day? Or have you voted the spooks out?
If your town hasn't taken this step,don't you think that the "ghost has been walking" long enough?
If your labor union has not taken steps to drive this "ghost" out of your family circles, the opportunity is wide open to you at the spring elections.
Why not take a hand at the next local option contest and let the "ghost walk" clear out of your community?
From the April 1912 issue of The American Patriot
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