“Sir,” Mr. Ratherquite said suspiciously, “I do not believe you are a gentleman.” Then he nodded a nod that seemed to conclude the matter right there and then. And right then and there.
Both of the Ladies giggled.
Mark Malone smiled. “I never claimed to be a gentleman. Understand this: A man doesn’t claim to be a gentleman in order to become a gentleman. He either is, or he isn’t.”
“And you, sir, are not. What do you make of that?”
“In my business, Mr. Ratherquite, we would refer to you as a simple garden weed that needs plucked.”
“Here is what I’ve always thought,” Dr. Zauberer began, waving his hands about in an odd manner. “Who wants to be a gentleman? It basically means you’re a gentle man. That stinks. It’s odious. It’s ATROCIOUS!”
Dr. Zauberer screamed out the last word, and it rather hurt, you know. The ears, that is. Hurt the ears.
Both the Ladies cowered, and Mr. Ratherquite stepped in front of them. “No more screaming, sir!”
This professor nodded. “I agree with the principle. We should go for the name Warriorman or Viciousman.”
“No, no! I’ve got it!” Dr. Zauberer was excited now. “How about Atrociousman or…or…Dastardlyman! Yes, that’s it! Dastardlyman.”
And Dr. Zauberer went skipping off happily.
“This conversation has been atrocious!” Mr. Ratherquite and the ladies departed.
Mark Malone shook his head. “People talk about the strangest things.”
“I agree,” this professor said. “And one of these days you’ll have to tell me why you do it.”