Excerpt from Ballad of the Flim-Flam Man

"For a minute we just stood around and listened, but everything was still as a mouse. No sound or nothing. Believe you me, I felt plumb silly standing there with my ear cocked thataway at the door of the ladies' head. It won't natural. Directly, Mr. Jones knocks, rapping real delicate with only one knuckle. No answer. He whispers then, "Miss Lura Belle?" Not a durn chirp from the john. "One thing sure," I says, and I never whispered, "she sure as hell couldn't of fell in. You couldn't back her between the shafts of a two-horse wagon." Real sarcastic. I figured that would fetch her out quick enough. But there won't a sound forthcoming, not a peep. "We can't stand here all day," Mr. Jones says. He was getting touchy himself, and he won't easy riled. Next thing, he grabs the knob and jiggles it When he saw it won't locked, he eased it around, then flung the door back, as broad as daylight. The john was empty! "I'll be a son of a bitch," I sings out. I couldn't help myself, I was so astounded. About this time a fellow in a blue serge suit hustled around the corner, headed for the gents' like he'd been caught short. We didn't stop to explain why we was staring popeyed at the ladies toilet. We moved out smartly and dove in the pickup, with every damn fool and his brother gaping at us. First thing Mr. Jones did, he clawed out his pocketbook from inside his coat in a burnt hurry. Then he jerked it open. He needn't of hurried though. Because there won't a cent in it, not a red of all the pigeon-drop touch. Not to mention the last of our tentmeeting collection. There won't nothing but a passel of his little white cards. We was flat again.

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