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Rambling Notes of an Idle Excursion              271
get up a combination somehow that would fill the bill; so I hove into the fellow half a teaspoonful of No. 8 and half a teaspoonful of No. 7, and I'll be hanged if it didn't kill him in fifteen minutes ! There's some­thing about this medicine-chest system that's too many for me!"
There was a good deal of pleasant gossip about old Captain "Hurricane" Jones, of the Pacific ocean — peace to his ashes ! Two or three of us present had known him ; I particularly well, for I had made four sea-voyages with him. He was a very remarkable man. He was born in a ship; he picked up what little educa­tion he had among his shipmates; he began life in the forecastle, and climbed grade by grade to the cap­taincy. More than fifty years of his sixty-five were spent at sea. He had sailed all oceans, seen all lands, and borrowed a tint from all climates. When a man has been fifty years at sea he necessarily knows nothing of men, nothing of the world but its surface, nothing of the world's thought, nothing of the world's learning but its A B C, and that blurred and distorted by the unfocused lenses of an untrained mind. Such a man is only a gray and bearded child. That is what old Hurricane Jones was — simply an innocent, lovable old infant. When his spirit was in repose he was as sweet and gentle as a girl; when his wrath was up he was a hurricane that made his nickname seem tamely descrip­tive. He was formidable in a fight, for he was of powerful build and dauntless courage. He was fres­coed from head to heel with pictures and mottoes tattooed in red and blue India ink. I was with him one voyage when he got his last vacant space tattooed; this vacant space wTas around his left ankle. During three days he stumped about the ship with his ankle bare and swollen, and this legend gleaming red and
angry out Irom a clouding of India ink: %t Virtue is its 18