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HOME > Short Stories > The Plain Man and His Wife > 第五小节
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 I pass to another aspect of Mr. Omicron’s private reflections consequent upon Mrs. Omicron’s dreadful failure of tact1 in asking him about the ring after the mutton had proved to be underdone and the coffee to be inadequate2. “She only thinks of spending,” reflected Mr. Omicron, resentfully. A more or less true reflection, no doubt, but there would have been a different colour to it if Mr. Omicron had exercised the greatest of his faculties3. Suppose you were to unscale your eyes, Mr. Omicron—that is to say, use your imagination—and try to see that so far as finance is concerned your wife’s chief and proper occupation in life is to spend. Conceive what you would say if she announced one morning: “Henry, I am sick of spending. I am going out into the world to earn.” Can you not hear yourself employing a classic phrase about “the woman’s sphere”? In brief, there would occur an altercation4 and a shindy.  
Your imagination, once set in motion, will show you that your conjugal5 existence is divided into two great departments—the getting and the spending departments. Wordsworth chanted that in getting and spending we lay waste our powers. We could not lay waste our powers in a more satisfying manner. The two departments, mutually indispensable, balance each other. You organized them. You made yourself the head of one and your wife the head of the other. You might, of course, have organized them otherwise. It was open to you in the Hottentot style to decree that your wife should do the earning while you did the spending. But for some mysterious reason this arrangement did not appeal to you, and you accordingly go forth6 daily to the office and return therefrom with money. The theory of your daily excursion is firmly based in the inherent nature of things. The theory is the fundamental cosmic one that money is made in order that money may be spent—either at once or later. Even the miser7 conforms to this theory, for he only saves in obedience8 to the argument that the need of spending in the future may be more imperious than is the need of spending at the moment.
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