Jack Ass, wid a long tail,
Bag o’ Caco coming down.
Dey teas-y me, dey worry me
Dey take my dandy from me.
Jack Ass, wid a long tail,
&c. ad infinitum
In many parts of the Southern Hemisphere, fortunately for society, the Ladies are beginning to be held in very little estimation. The aged film of prejudice and erroneous opinion is now a being removed from the eyes of the people and not a few are convinced of the licentious and immoral character of these drones, who, like the vampire, suck the very life’s blood from their poor deluded victims. The following anecdotes were related to me by Senor Pecanha a Portuguese.
The following words, simple as they are, and destitute of meaning, have yet a harmony, when sung now slow, now fast, which one could hardly conceive you commonly hear it in the West Indies, where a number of slaves, will repeat it for some time in every various key and time.
“Monkey, monkey play de fiddle – make the baboon dance.”
In travelling through the United States, you are met on every side with a diversity of customs and manners, calculated to excite your surprise, knowing as you do, that they are degenerated from the same common stock as yourself. During the British ascendancy the natives copied closely the models of customs & habits, which England sent to govern them, and, if you were not reminded of the circumstance, by the features of the country, you would hardly imagine that you were in the New World and not in Britain. But soon after the unfortunate separation of the colony from the Mother Country, the natives set up for themselves a standard of manners & customs widely and intentionally differing from that of old established. It is not my intention to mention all the points in which I have heard they differ, but merely to allude to one, which we would consider best in the breach than in the observance. Tis this. Should you reach an Inn, where there are plenty of guests, and few beds, you will be under the necessity of sharing yours, with some two of your fellow travellers. Faugh! Faugh! However repugnant you may feel to this arrangement, which will bring you into such close contact with you don’t know whom, there is no remedy – and any petition or offer of reward for a separate birth, will be met with a scornful refusal by persons who consider themselves, as men, on an equality with you, and can have no idea of the delicacy of your feelings on such an occasion. If you like it better, you can be on the floor, or pass the night on a chair, unless you have savey enough to oust your bedfellows from their hole by some ruse, such as follows. An Englishman travelling in the States was obliged to share his bed with two Yankees. As soon as they had turned in, he tried a scheme to get rid of them. In medio forte recubint – tune, wina puis retenta in vincinum dextuem toba vi minxit. Idle ex somno hoc modo excites, valde iratus disit – Quid facis, stute? Cui Anglus respondit “Tace, amica, si in te farinan – facio, in atherum cacare paro. Qua re acrdita, sine mora uterque e lecticuto exselivit, at p_ue timore lofum torem callido dedit – quod optandum erat.
Give a dog a bad name &.c
The character of the Bermudian Islands is so bad in the general estimation, that in ridicule, as anecdote is related of a ’Mudian dying & descending to the Infernal regions, where Satan generously offered to restore him to his native Isles – but, as the story goes, he rejected the proposal, and preferred remaining where he was to returning to such a miserable hole.
If you may credit the accounts you hear, you would imagine that vice is unknown in Bermuda, and in particular that the crimes of suicide and murder are few and far between. In confirmation of the paucity or parity of these crimes, you are told that on one occasion a man was murdered by another hand with a hammer. The laws of England being the basis of the Colonial Code, agreeably to an practice, a Jury was summoned, who being totally ignorant of their duty, were quite at a loss how to proceed. At last by a piece of great good fortune, they fell in with one case, where a Jury had met to sit on the body of a man who had been drowned _ and they thought they could not do better than copy out the whole proceedings on the Inquest, which they did word for word to the end of the Chapter & thus their judgement stood on record that the man, whose brains had been knocked out [by[ the hammer was “Found Drowned.” Ohe jam satis.
Their brother – Jurymen of Newfoundland came not a whit behind the ’Mudians in their knowledge of legal proceedings. In consequence of their ignorance, and adoption of a similar plan, they found that a man, who as the Irishman said, had hung himself up to dry, was Felo de se – which they ingeniously enough translated in to intelligible English instead of unintelligible Spanish “Fell into the sea.”
When Sir Ralph Woodford was Governor of Trinidad, it was expected that all persons of any respectability, should wait upon him and announce their arrival in the Island from Europe or other parts. On one occasion a Merchant from Glasgow was introduced accompanied by a boy of a ruddy complexion, and stout withal. Sir Ralph being much struck with his blooming appearance, kindly asked him how he came out – to which the boy answered with the utmost readiness “That he came out consigned to Threadneedle [?]& C.o,” as if he had been a bale of goods, or as if his ideas had been so entirely commercial that he could not express himself otherwise than in the language of commerce – precisely as a Sailor [would] tell you of any common occurrence in nautical phrase.
Previous to the separation of Columbia from the dominion of Spain, the most absurd prejudices existed respecting the English. The revolution in that country opened the eyes of the natives – more particularly when great numbers flocked to her standard to assist her in procuring her independence. Among others who were undeceived in their former opinions, and who was candid enough to own it, was a lady of considerable property called Donna Barbara. She was a simple single hearted lady – an enthusiast in the cause of her country – a patriot in the truest sense of the word, which she manifested by liberaling [sic] contributing of her fortune to its necessities and by the kind treatment which all defenders received from her. Her bounty was unlimited & unrestricted. Columbians & foreigners in their service equally shared in her liberality. Among others the Irish regiment & its officers were especial objects of her favour – particularly the latter. These would often go out of their direct route 20 or 30 miles expressly to see Mother Barbara, from whom all of them had received such attention as a Mother would bestow on her sons. Such visits were a source of mutual pleasure and the weary Hibernian was sure to be refreshed & to have his wants supplied. Often when coming together, she would call them by the endearing term of Mi Hijos – i.e. my own sons. She candidly told them that not long ago she had been taught by the priests to believe that they were all heathens – that they would be eternally damned – and above all that they had tails, like monkeys. Whereas, she used to add, now I find that you are good Christians, & good Catholics & have no more tails than we have. But she usually concluded Mi Hijos – my sons – there is only one fault I have to find with you, & that is that you do not express yourself in a Christian [tongue]. For instance when you want Agoa (water) say agan – agua is ajoa and God so intended that Christians should speak, for undoubtedly the language of Spain is the true language of Christian – nay the language spoken by our first Parents in Paradise. Do not speak like the dogs and when you want agoa, say agoa & not wa~ wa~wa~ter, like a vile cur when he barks.
Auctore Samta Maria Mexicano