Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!

On Behalf of the Management
by [?]

This is the story of the man manager, and how he held his own until the very last paragraph.

I had it from Sully Magoon, /viva voce/. The words are indeed his; and if they do not constitute truthful fiction my memory should be taxed with the blame.

It is not deemed amiss to point out, in the beginning, the stress that is laid upon the masculinity of the manager. For, according to Sully, the term when applied to the feminine division of mankind has precisely an opposite meaning. The woman manager (he says) economizes, saves, oppresses her household with bargains and contrivances, and looks sourly upon any pence that are cast to the fiddler for even a single jig-step on life’s arid march. Wherefore her men-folk call her blessed, and praise her; and then sneak out the backdoor to see the Gilhooly Sisters to a buck-and-wing dance.

Now, the man manager (I still quote Sully) is a Caesar without a Brutus. He is an autocrat without responsibility, a player who imperils no stake of his own. His office is to enact, to reverberate, to boom, to expand, to out-coruscate–profitably, if he can. Bill- paying and growing gray hairs over results belong to his principals. It is his to guide the risk, to be the Apotheosis of Front, the three- tailed Bashaw of Bluff, the Essential Oil of Razzle-Dazzle.

We sat at luncheon, and Sully Magoon told me. I asked for particulars.

“My old friend Denver Galloway was a born manager,” said Sully. He first saw the light of day in New York at three years of age. He was born in Pittsburg, but his parents moved East the third summer afterward.

“When Denver grew up, he went into the managing business. At the age of eight he managed a news-stand for the Dago that owned it. After that he was manager at different times of a skating-rink, a livery- stable, a policy game, a restaurant, a dancing academy, a walking match, a burlesque company, a dry-goods store, a dozen hotels and summer resorts, an insurance company, and a district leader’s campaign. That campaign, when Coughlin was elected on the East Side, gave Denver a boost. It got him a job as manager of a Broadway hotel, and for a while he managed Senator O’Grady’s campaign in the nineteenth.

“Denver was a New Yorker all over. I think he was out of the city just twice before the time I’m going to tell you about. Once he went rabbit-shooting in Yonkers. The other time I met him just landing from a North River ferry. ‘Been out West on a big trip, Sully, old boy,’ says he. ‘Gad! Sully, I had no idea we had such a big country. It’s immense. Never conceived of the magnificence of the West before. It’s gorgeous and glorious and infinite. Makes the East seemed cramped and little. It’s a grand thing to travel and get an idea of the extent and resources of our country.’

“I’d made several little runs out to California and down to Mexico and up through Alaska, so I sits down with Denver for a chat about the things he saw.

“‘Took in the Yosemite, out there, of course?’ I asks.

“‘Well–no,’ says Denver, ‘I don’t think so. At least, I don’t recollect it. You see, I only had three days, and I didn’t get any farther west than Youngstown, Ohio.’

“About two years ago I dropped into New York with a little fly-paper proposition about a Tennessee mica mine that I wanted to spread out in a nice, sunny window, in the hopes of catching a few. I was coming out of a printing-shop one afternoon with a batch of fine, sticky prospectuses when I ran against Denver coming round a corner. I never saw him looking so much like a tiger-lily. He was as beautiful and new as a trellis of sweet peas, and as rollicking as a clarinet solo. We shook hands, and he asked me what I was doing, and I gave him the outlines of the scandal I was trying to create in mica.