It was to hold its annual convention at Monarch, Zenith’s chief rival among the cities of the state.
Rountree was chairman of the convention program-committee.
V The meetings of the convention were held in the ballroom of the Allen House.
He was the busiest man in the convention; he was so busy that he got nothing done whatever.
When he stood on the low platform before the convention, he trembled and saw only a purple haze.
The delegations were presenting the claims of their several cities to the next year’s convention.
J. Harry Barmhill, the convention chairman, hinted, "We’re grateful to you, Mr. Uh, but you must give the other boys a chance to hand in their bids now."
The convention was on.
The real convention consisted of men muttering in hotel bedrooms or in groups amid the badge-spotted crowd in the hotel-lobby, but there was a show of public meetings.
III Besides the five official delegates to the convention—Babbitt, Rountree, W. A. Rogers, Alvin Thayer, and Elbert Wing—there were fifty unofficial delegates, most of them with their wives.
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At the Athletic Club he led unwilling men aside to inquire, "Say, if you had to read a paper before a big convention, would you start in with the funny stories or just kind of scatter ’cause all through?"
Warren Whitby, the broker, who had a gift of verse for banquets and birthdays, had added to Frink’s City Song a special verse for the realtors’ convention: Oh, here we come, The fellows from Zenith, the Zip Citee.
—so much analysis that they can discard all these stupid conventions and understand each other and become acquainted right away, like ships that pass in the night?
Babbitt made his voice to be measured and lordly; he thrust out his abdomen and rumbled, "We got to see to it that the convention lets the Legislature understand just where they get off in this matter of taxing realty transfers."
His convention paper had given him the beginning of a reputation for oratory, so the Republican-Democratic Central Committee sent him to the Seventh Ward and South Zenith, to address small audiences of workmen and clerks, and wives uneasy with their new votes.
When he went home, at two, he was fully a member of the Bunch, and all the week thereafter he was bound by the exceedingly straitened conventions, the exceedingly wearing demands, of their life of pleasure and freedom.
She congratulated the convention-defying Verona on being a "nice, loyal home-body without all these Ideas that so many girls seem to have nowadays;" and when Ted filled the differential with grease, out of pure love of mechanics and filthiness, she rejoiced that he was "so handy around the house—and helping his father and all, and not going out with the girls all the time and trying to pretend he was a society fellow."
They said that Whereas Almighty God in his beneficent mercy had seen fit to remove to a sphere of higher usefulness some thirty-six realtors of the state the past year, Therefore it was the sentiment of this convention assembled that they were sorry God had done it, and the secretary should be, and hereby was, instructed to spread these resolutions on the minutes, and to console the bereaved families by sending them each a copy.
The heading was "Sensation at Annual Land-men’s Convention.
Our Chamber of Commerce has wired me they’ve set aside eight thousand dollars, in real money, for the entertainment of the convention!"
After all, there’s still a good month and two weeks—no, three weeks—must be almost three weeks—well, there’s more than six weeks in all before the Republican convention, and I feel a fellow ought to keep an open mind and give all the candidates a show—look ’cause all over and size ’cause up, and then decide carefully."
A dyed-in-the-wool Zenithite sure loves his neighbors, but we’ve made up our minds to grab this convention off our neighbor burgs like we’ve grabbed the condensed-milk business and the paper-box business and—"
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