The Gridiron, the Captain, Patrick,
The Captain, Patrick, and the Frenchman.
PATRICK. Well, Captain, whereabouts in the
wide world are we? Is it Roosia, Proosia, or
the Jarmant oceant?
Captain. Tut, you fool; it's France.
Patrick. Tare and ouns! do you tell me so? and
how do you know it's France, Captain dear?
Captain. Because we were on the coast of the
Bay of Biscay when the vessel was wrecked.
Patrick. Throth, I was thinkin' so myself.
And now, Captain jewel, it is I that wishes we had a
Captain. Why, Patrick, what puts the notion of a
gridiron into your head?
Patrick. Because I'm starving with hunger,
Captain. Surely you do not intend to eat a
gridiron, do you?
Patrick. Ate a gridiron; bad luck to it! no.
But if we had a gridiron, we could dress a beefsteak.
Captain. Yes; but where's the beefsteak,
Patrick. Sure, couldn't we cut it off the pork?
Captain. I never thought of that. You are a
clever fellow, Patrick. (Laughing.)
Patrick. There's many a thrue word said in joke,
Captain. And now, if you will go and get the bit of
pork that we saved from the rack, I'll go to the house
there beyant, and ax some of them to lind me the
loan of a gridiron.
Captain. But, Patrick, this is France, and they
are all foreigners here.
Patrick. Well, and how do you know but I am as
good a furriner myself as any o' them.
Captain. What do you mean, Patrick?
Patrick. Parley voo frongsay?
Captain. O, you understand French, then, is it?
Patrick. Throth, you may say that, Captain
Captain. Well, Patrick, success to you. Be civil
to the foreigners, and I'll be back with the pork in a
[He goes out.
Patrick. Ay, sure enough, I'll be civil to
them; for the Frinch are always mighty p'lite
intirely, and I'll show them I know what good
manners is. Indade, and here comes munseer
himself, quite convaynient. (As the Frenchman
enters, Patrick takes off his hat, and making a low
bow, says:) God save you, sir, and all your
children. I beg your pardon for the liberty I take,
but it's only being in disthress in regard of ateing,
that I make bowld to trouble ye; and if you could
lind me the loan of a gridiron, I'd be intirely
obleeged to ye.
Frenchman (staring at him). Comment!
Patrick. Indade it's thrue for you. I'm tathered
to paces, and God knows I look quare enough; but
it's by rason of the storm that dhruve us ashore jist
here, and we're all starvin'.
Frenchman. Je m'y t—(pronounced zhe meet).
Patrick. Oh! not at all! by no manes! we have
plenty of mate ourselves, and we'll dhress it, if you
be plased jist to lind us the loan of a gridiron, sir.
(Making a low bow.)
Frenchman (staring at him, but not understanding
Patrick. I beg pardon, sir; but maybe I'm
undher a mistake, but I thought I was in France, sir.
An't you all furriners here? Parley voo frongsay?
Frenchman. Oui, monsieur.
Patrick. Then, would you lind me the loan of a
gridiron, if you plase? (The Frenchman stares
more than ever, as if anxious to understand.) I
know it's a liberty I take, sir; but it's only in the
regard of bein' cast away; and if you plase, sir,
parley voo frongsay?
Frenchman. Oui, monsieur, oui.
Patrick. Then would you lind me the loan of a
gridiron, sir and you'll obleege me?
Frenchman. Monsieur, pardon, monsieur—
Patrick. (Angrily). By my sowl, if it was you
was in disthress, and if it was to owld Ireland you
came, it's not only the gridiron they'd give you, if
you axed it, but something to put on it too, and a
dhrop of dhrink into the bargain. Can't you understand
your own language? (Very slowly.) Parley—voo—frongsay—munseer?
Frenchman. Oui, monsieur; oui, monsieur, mais—
Patrick. Then lend me the loan of a gridiron, I
say, and bad scram to you.
Frenchman (bowing and scraping). Monsieur, je
Patrick. Phoo! the divil sweep yourself and your
long tongs! I don't want a tongs at all, at all.
Can't you listen to rason?
Frenchman. Oui, oui, monsieur: certainement, mais—
Patrick. Then lind me the loan of a gridiron, and
howld your prate. (The Frenchman shakes his head,
as if to say he did not understand; but Patrick,
thinking he meant it as a refusal, says, in a passion:)
Bad cess to the likes o' you! Throth, if you were in
my counthry, it's not that-a-way they'd use you.
The curse o' the crows on you, you owld sinner! The
divil another word I'll say to you. (The Frenchman
puts his hand on his heart, and tries to express
compassion in his countenance.) Well, I'll give you
one chance more, you old thafe! Are you a
Christhian, at all, at all? Are you a furriner that all
the world calls so p'lite? Bad luck to you! do you
understand your mother tongue? Parley voo frongsay?
(Very loud.) Parley voo frongsay?
Frenchman. Oui, monsieur, oui, oui.
Patrick. Then, thunder and turf! will you lind me
the loan of a gridiron? (The Frenchman shakes his
head, as if he did not understand; and Pat says,
vehemently:) The curse of the hungry be on you,
you owld negarly villian! the back of my hand and
the sowl of my fut to you! May you want a gridiron
yourself yet! and wherever I go, it's high and low,
rich and poor, shall hear of it, and be hanged to