Sunday, June 19, 2016

Drawing Daddy-Long-Legs Out

The date is November 15th in the story, and just before sealing one of those required letters to send to her 'creepy-crawling,' benefactor, Daddy-Long-Legs, Jerusha suddenly adds:
PS. I know I'm not to expect any letters in return, and I've been warned not to bother you with questions, but tell me, Daddy, just this once - are you awfully old or just a little old? And are you perfectly bald or just a little bald? It is very difficult thinking about you in the abstract like a theorem in geometry.

Given a tall rich man who hates girls, but is very generous to one quite impertinent girl, what does he look like?

Time passes, and no response, leaving Jerusha to complain:
9th December

Dear Daddy-Long-Legs,

You never answered my question and it was very important.


I have it planned exactly what you look like - very satisfactorily - until I reach the top of your head, and then I AM stuck. I can't decide whether you have white hair or black hair or sort of sprinkly grey hair or maybe none at all.

Here is your portrait:
But the problem is, shall I add some hair?

Would you like to know what colour your eyes are? They're grey, and your eyebrows stick out like a porch roof (beetling, they're called in novels), and your mouth is a straight line with a tendency to turn down at the corners. Oh, you see, I know! You're a snappy old thing with a temper.
Jerusha is clearly attempting to draw him out . . . so to speak.



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