Charles G.D. Roberts
BRAE, JANUARY 4, 1908
days to Epiphany! I catch the 1 o’c[l]ock train
to Toronto tomorrow, so will [be] with you by mid-afternoon.
The old stag1
suspects, of course, but he will get no “ocular
is on holiday (at my suggestion!) and he must stay
to tend the house and stock.
Speaking of which, I
shall bring you a loin of Piggy as a specimen mouthful.
The saddle is not yet cooked, and neither are the
chops and hocks—which is probably just as well,
for as the saying goes “Never eat more that
you can lift.”4
I can hardly wait,
Walter Buchanan. A “stag” is an old boar,
castrated prior to butchering. [back]
phrase is from Othello III, iii. 361, where
Othello demands proof of Desdemona’s infidelity
from Iago. [back]
Cassandra Godet (1878-1924), a volatile and loquacious
servant of the Buchanan’s. [back]
source of this quotation remains to be discovered.
It may be a distortion of the much-used nineteenth-century
rural Ontario axiom, “Never eat anything bigger
than your own head.” See Colombo’s
Dictionary of Canadian Stuff No One Believes I Get
Paid for Compiling by John Robert Colombo and
I.P. Freeley (Toronto: Hecuba P, 1989), p. 432. [back]