Potash & Perlmutter - Their Copartnership Ventures and Adventures
by Montague Glass
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"Sure not," Abe replied, "because in the first place, Sol, he knows I wouldn't stand for it, and in the second place, Mawruss ain't out to do me, y'understand. I will say for Mawruss this, Sol. Of course a partner is a partner, Sol, and the best of partners behaves like cut-throats at times, but Mawruss was always white with me, Sol, and certainly I think a whole lot of that feller. Just to show you, Sol, I got Miss Cohen to fix it up for us a statement of our drawing account which I got it right here in my breast pocket, and I ain't even looked at it at all, so sure I am that everything is all O. K."

"I bet yer you overdrew him yet," Sol observed.

"Me, I ain't such a big spender, Sol," Abe replied as he unfolded the statement. "I don't even got to look at the statement, because I know we drew just the same amount. Yes,—here it is Sol. Me, I drew six thousand two hundred dollars, and Mawruss drew—six thousand two hundred and——. Well, what do you think for a sucker like that?"

"Why, what's the matter, Abe?" Sol cried.

Abe's face had grown white and his eyes glittered with anger.

"That's a loafer for you!" he went on. "That feller actually pocketed fifty-two dollars of my money."

"Fifty-two dollars?" Sol repeated. "What are you making such a fuss about fifty-two dollars for?"

"With you I suppose fifty-two dollars is nothing, Sol?" Abe retorted. "I suppose you could pick up fifty-two dollars in the streets, Sol. What? Wait till I see that robber to-morrow. I'll fix him. Actually, I thought that feller was above such things, Sol."

"Don't excite yourself, Abe," Sol began.

"I ain't excited, Sol," Abe replied. "I ain't a bit excited. All I would do is I will go back to the store and draw a check for fifty-two dollars. I wouldn't let that beat get ahead of me not for one cent, Sol. If I would sit down with my eyes closed for five minutes, Sol, that loafer would do me for my shirt. I must be on the job all the time, Sol, otherwise that feller would have me on the streets yet."

For a quarter of an hour longer Abe reviled Morris, until Sol was moved to protest.

"If I thought that way about my partner, Abe," he said, "I'd go right down and see Feldman and have a dissolution yet."

"That's what I will do, Sol," Abe declared. "Why should I tie myself up any longer with a cutthroat like that? I tell you what we'll do, Sol. We'll go over to the store and see what else Miss Cohen found it out. I bet you he rings in a whole lot of items on me with the petty cash while I was away on the road."

Together they left Hammersmith's and repaired at once to Potash & Perlmutter's place of business. As they entered the show-room Miss Cohen emerged from her office with a sheet of paper in her hand.

"Mr. Potash," she said, "when you were in Chicago last fall you drew on the firm for a hundred dollars, and by mistake I credited it to you on your expense account. It ought to have been charged on your drawing account. So that makes your total drawing account sixty-three hundred dollars."

Abe stopped short and looked at Sol.

"What was that you said, Miss Cohen?" he asked.

"I said that I made a mistake in that statement, and you're overdrawn on Mr. Perlmutter forty-eight dollars," Miss Cohen concluded.

"Then hurry up quick, Miss Cohen," Abe cried, "and draw a check in my personal check book on the Kosciusko Bank to Potash & Perlmutter for forty-eight dollars and see that it's deposited the first thing to-morrow morning."

He handed Sol a cigar.

"Yes, Sol," he said, "if Mawruss would find it out that I am overdrawn on him forty-eight dollars, he would abuse me like a pickpocket. That feller never gives me credit for being square at all, Sol. I would be afraid for my life if he would get on to that forty-eight dollars. Why, the very first thing you know, Sol, he would be going around telling everybody I was a crook and a cutthroat. That's the kind of feller Mawruss is, Sol. I could treat him always like a gentleman, Sol, and if the smallest little thing happens to us, 'sucker' is the least what he calls me."

At this juncture the green baize doors leading into the hall burst open and Morris himself leaped into the show-room. His necktie was perched rakishly underneath his right ear, and his collar was of the moisture and consistency of a used wash rag. His clothes were dripping, for he carried no umbrella, and his hair hung in damp strands over his forehead. Nevertheless he was grinning broadly, as without a word he ran up to Abe and seized his hand. For two minutes Morris shook it up and down and then he collapsed into the nearest chair.

"Well, Mawruss," Abe cried, "what's the matter? Couldn't you say nothing? What did you come downtown again for? You should have stayed uptown with Minnie."

"S'all right, Abe," Morris gasped. "S'all over, too. The doctor says instead I should be making a nuisance of myself uptown, I would be better off in the store here. He was there before I could get home."

"Who was there?" Abe asked. "The doctor?"

"Not the doctor," Morris went on. "The boy was there. Minnie is doing fine. The doctor said everything would be all right."

"That's good. That's good," Abe murmured.

"Y'oughter seen him, Abe. He weighed ten pounds," Morris continued. "I bet yer he could holler, too,—like an auctioneer already. Minnie says also I shouldn't forget to tell you what we agreed upon."

"What we agreed upon?" Abe repeated. "Why we ain't agreed upon nothing, so far what I hear, Mawruss. What d'ye mean—what we agreed upon?"

"Not you and me, Abe," Morris cried. "Her and me. We agreed that if it was a boy we'd call him Abraham P. Perlmutter already."

He slapped Abe on the back and laughed uproariously, while Abe looked guilty and blushed a deep crimson.

"Abraham Potash Perlmutter," Morris reiterated. "That's one fine name, Sol."

It was now Sol's turn to take Morris' hand and he squeezed it hard.

"I congradulate you for the boy and for the name both," he said.

Once more Abe seized his partner's hand and shook it rhythmically up and down as though it were a patent exerciser.

"Mawruss," he said, "this is certainly something which I didn't expect at all, and all I could say is that I got to tell you you would never be sorry for it. Just a few minutes since in Hammersmith's I was telling Sol I got a partner which it is a credit and an honor for a feller to know he could always trust such a partner to do what is right and square and also, Mawruss, I——Miss Cohen," he broke off suddenly, "you should draw right away another check in my personal book for a hundred dollars."

"To whose order?" Miss Cohen asked.

Abe cleared his throat and blinked away a slight moisture before replying.

"Make it to the order of Abraham P. Perlmutter," he said, "and we will deposit it in a savings bank, Mawruss, and when he comes twenty-one years old, Mawruss, we will draw it out with anything else what you put in there for him, Mawruss, and we will deposit it in our own bank to the credit of Potash, Perlmutter & Son."

Sol Klinger's face spread into an amiable grin.

"You could put me down ten dollars on that savings bank account, too, boys," he said as he reached for his hat. "I've got to be going now."

"Don't forget you should tell Klein it's a boy," Morris called to him.

"I wouldn't forget," Sol replied. "Klein'll be glad to hear it. You know, Mawruss, Klein ain't such a grouch as most people think he is. In fact, taking him all around, Klein is a pretty decent feller."

As he turned to leave, his eye met Abe's, and both of them smiled guiltily.

"After all, Abe," Sol concluded, "it ain't what partners says about each other, Abe, but how they acts which counts. Ain't it?"

Abe nodded emphatically.

"An old saying but a true one," Morris declared. "Actions talk louder as words."


Transcriber's Notes

Several spelling and punctuation inconsistencies appear in the original of this text. Punctuation has been changed when required for correct syntax. Inconsistent spelling has been retained in direct speech for pronunciation purposes and in quoted written material, but has been changed as noted below.

Page 12 Changed "good-bye" to "good-by" Page 39 Changed "recission" to "rescission" Page 50 Changed "Lownstein" to "Lowenstein" Page 135 Changed "dassent" to "dassen't" Page 146 Changed "Kreitman" to "Kreitmann" Page 200 Changed "theeayter" to "theayter" Page 244 Changed "neighborhod" to "neighborhood" Page 252 Changed "Fernstein" to "Feinstein" Page 280 Changed "cigarrettel" to "cigarettel" Pages 54, 300, 411 Changed "aint" to "ain't" Page 368 Changed "cancellation" to "cancelation" Page 374 Changed "Raskin" to "Rashkin" (twice) Page 389 Changed "practicaly" to "practically" Page 394 Changed "Sugarmen" to "Sugarman" Page 413 Changed "cutthroats" to "cut-throats"


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