Henry David Thoreau
The Frozen Pond
by George Williams
Portrait of a Young Woman in a Lace Hat
by Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Woodsburner: A Novel
by ~ John Pipkin
Reading by Brett Barry.
and Other Natural History Essays
Walden and Other Writings
6" Display, U.S. & International Wireless
the Ministerial Lot in the southwestern part of the town . Unexpectedly
find Heywood's Pond frozen over thinly, it being shallow and coldly
In the evening went to a party. It is a bad place to go to - thirty or forty persons, mostly young women, in a small room, warm and noisy. Was introduced to two young women. The first one was as lively and loquacious as a chickadee; had been accustomed to the society of watering-places, and therefore could get no refreshment out of such a dry fellow as I. The other was said to be pretty-looking, but I rarely look people in their faces,
and, moreover, I could not hear what she said, there was such a clacking - could only see the motion of her lips when I looked that way.
I could imagine better places for conversation, where there should be a certain degree of silence surrounding you, and less than forty talking at once.
Why, this afternoon, even, I did better. There was old Mr. Joseph Hosmer and I ate our luncheon of cracker and cheese together in the woods. I heard all he said, though it was not much, to be sure, and he could hear me. And then he talked out of such a glorious repose, taking a leisurely bite at the cracker and cheese between his words; and so some of him was communicated to me, and some of me to him, I trust.
These parties, I think, are a part of the machinery of modern society, that young people may be brought together to form marriage connections.
What is the use of going to see people whom yet you never see, and who never see you ? I begin to suspect that it is not necessary that we should see one another.
Some of my friends make singular blunders . They go out of their way to talk with certain young women of whom they think, or have heard, that they are pretty, and take pains to introduce me to them. That may be a
reason why they should look at them, but it is not a reason why they should talk with them. I confess that I am lacking a sense, perchance, in this respect, and I derive no pleasure from talking with a young woman half an hour simply because she has regular features. The society of young women is the most unprofitable I have ever tried. They are so light and flighty that you can never be sure whether they are there or not there. I prefer to talk with the more staid and settled, settled for life, in every sense.
follow Thoreau on Twitter