The New Yorker:
Thanksgiving will be on us in a week, and thoughtfully we count our blessings. After nearly two years of war, this office, generally speaking, is holding up pretty well. The water runs a little warmer and more reluctantly from the coolers in the hall, strangling now and then on a big bubble; at the moment the bulb is burned out over the mirror in the men’s room, and the paint is flaking away from the wall in the cubicle where one of the lesser editors sits alone with his lesser, flaky thoughts; the passage of memoranda from one man to another has been clogged by the fact that the messengers now are not very good at names, and lately the telephone service has been only approximate, so usually we get an outside wire when we ask for Mr. McGuire, a mechanical buzz instead of a living man; the ink in our well is often mud and dust, and the ersatz paper clips crumble away in our hands; the personnel, of course, is greatly changed, most of the rough work and heavy lifting being entrusted to tall girls, and creative thought to the elderly, the infirm, and the conclusively domestic. We realize how our reduced circumstances are apt to strike a man with a gun in a swamp, and we mention them really with thanksgiving and embarrassment. There is, in fact, so much to be thankful for. The magazine continues to come out, a small, impertinent miracle, it may be, in a world in which so much better writing has been stilled, and we who edit it live in more comfort and safety than we have any right to expect. Above everything else, however, we are grateful that all those who have gone from here into the armed forces are, as far as we know, still alive and well, wherever they may be. It is indeed a season of thanksgiving for us as long as that is so.
Go to link