Gumption for Chumps




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By Dan Beard

How to Take Off a Sweater

tbp249.gif (10763 bytes)
Figs. 249-254.

In my boating days it was always a cause of considerable amusement when a new member of the rowing club would attempt to take off a jersey or sweater. He would almost always seize the bottom hem and then find himself at a loss what to do next. Or, reaching with both hands over his shoulders, he would begin to claw desperately at his back. 

Athletes are a kind-hearted lot of fellows, and one of the veterans was always on hand to show the novice how to take off the garment properly. Supposing it was a short-sleeved jersey, like the one shown in Fig. 249, that was to be removed, the veteran would get it off with two movements of his arms. First he crossed his arms, reaching as far back as he could and grasping the sweater firmly at each side, as in Fig. 250. It is then only necessary to quickly bring the arms up over the head, and at the same time bring the hands apart, and the sweater, jersey, or undershirt is turned wrong side out and is off in a jiffy.

To make this plain to the reader I have shown the two movements in a series of six figures. Fig. 251 shows arms still crossed with shirt removed up to the shoulders; Fig. 252, the arms uncrossed, but hands yet together and face uncovered; Fig. 253 shows the arms raised, hands wide apart, and the body entirely uncovered; Fig. 254, shirt off ready to put in locker.

Tying a Knot for Keeps

tbp255.gif (9231 bytes)
Figs. 255-257. 
How to Tie Your Shoe So That It Won't Come Untied

Then there was the fellow whose shoe was always untied until one of the older members would show him how to make a bow knot that won't come untied.

This is the way it is done: Tie an ordinary bow knot, as in Fig. 255; keep it loose, as is shown in the diagram, by placing one forefinger in the loop (A B, Fig. 256). Then bring the bow (C) up and over, as shown by the dotted line, and thrust the bow (C) through the loop (A B, Fig. 256), and you will have a bow in the form of Fig. 257.   Pull the bows (C and D) until the knot is tight, and it will not again come undone. But it may be loosened at any time by a smart pull on either of the free ends of the strings (E or F).

Thus you see that gumption is common-sense and the knowing how, and that all our best athletes in school and college are boys with gumption. It takes gumption to build a tunnel under the East River; gumption to ride, sail, row, fish, skate, swim, and to be a real, first-class American boy.

The Boy Pioneers






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Last modified: October 15, 2016.