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Kunama 1958


On the Cryptic and the Elliptic


Once upon a time there was a newspaper called "The Monaro Depress". It was run by a number of people, some of whom had learnt about the business through years of bitter experience, others still going through the initial stages.

There was the editor of the paper, who had risen from an insignificant position as "Laughs" the office-boy, to become the resident of a palatial office, though he had not yet acquired a young and pretty secretary. The young reporters were afraid of him, but didn't let that interfere with their happy-go-lucky attitude towards their assignments.

Howard, the editor's assistant, intensely disliked smudged typewriting and careless young reporters who left their motor-scooters lying in an untidy heap near the fence round the newspaper building.

Brownish ran an intellectual column entitled "The Divine Influence of Literature" and also a less high-brow feature, "Jokes I have seen and heard."

Wilks, on the practical side of the business, had a marked fondness for integrating pages three, four, thirteen and fourteen into sheet number two, and for differentiating the grades of type from one another.

Broadly mixed the inks, oiled the machinery and made the blocks. He also had to keep an eye on his bright young assistant, Molesworth, who never used well-known and convenient formulae, but insisted on First Principles. He liked to make the whole thing simple, by cutting up pieces of paper, numbering them and then sticking them together again.

The editor of the Foreign Correspondence Column, Mme Gautier, wrote charming replies to letters from overseas readers, and gave a touch of culture to the rather dry substance of the newspaper.

The paper's meticulous and efficient business manager, Mr. Beatty, ran a column on music in the Tuesday edition. He firmly resisted all attempts by the young reporters to liven up this column, insisting that it was culture the public needed and culture they would get, whether they liked it or not.

Of course, every day the Pieman arrived with his wares. These were always welcome to the harassed and overworked reporters, and likewise to their overseers who, without apparent reason, thought themselves overworked and harassed also.

And at the end of each day each industrious and studious reporter went home, produced his notes, and reviewed them diligently. The climax to their professional training came each year in November after which many left the paper, never to return.

NOLA BOND, 5th Year


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