Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers

Help / FAQ

<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next ->
PinkMonkey Digital Library-Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser

Chapter XLIII

Installed in her comfortable room, Carrie wondered how
Hurstwood had taken her departure. She arranged a few things
hastily and then left for the theatre, half expecting to encounter
him at the door. Not finding him, her dread lifted, and she felt
more kindly toward him. She quite forgot him until about to come
out, after the show, when the chance of his being there frightened
her. As day after day passed and she heard nothing at all, the
thought of being bothered by him passed. In a little while she was,
except for occasional thoughts, wholly free of the gloom with
which her life had been weighed in the flat.

It is curious to note how quickly a profession absorbs one. Carrie
became wise in theatrical lore, hearing the gossip of little Lola.
She learned what the theatrical papers were, which ones published
items about actresses and the like. She began to read the
newspaper notices, not only of the opera in which she had so
small a part, but of others. Gradually the desire for notice took
hold of her. She longed to be renowned like others, and read with
avidity all the complimentary or critical comments made
concerning others high in her profession. The showy world in
which her interest lay completely absorbed her.

It was about this time that the newspapers and magazines were
beginning to pay that illustrative attention to the beauties of the
stage which has since become fervid. The newspapers, and
particularly the Sunday newspapers, indulged in large decorative
theatrical pages, in which the faces and forms of well-known
theatrical celebrities appeared, enclosed with artistic scrolls. The
magazines also-or at least one or two of the newer ones-published
occasional portraits of pretty stars, and now and again photos of
scenes from various plays. Carrie watched these with growing
interest. When would a scene from her opera appear? When
would some paper think her photo worth while?

The Sunday before taking her new part she scanned the theatrical
pages for some little notice. It would have accorded with her
expectations if nothing had been said, but there in the squibs,
tailing off several more substantial items, was a wee notice. Carrie
read it with a tingling body: --The part of Katisha, the country
maid, in "The Wives of Abdul" at the Broadway, heretofore
played by Inez Carew, will be hereafter filled by Carrie Madenda,
one of the cleverest members of the chorus. --Carrie hugged
herself with delight. Oh, wasn’t it just fine! At last! The first, the
long-hoped for, the delightful notice! And they called her clever.
She could hardly restrain herself from laughing loudly. Had Lola
seen it?

"They’ve got a notice here of the part I’m going to play tomorrow
night," said Carrie to her friend.

"Oh, jolly! Have they?" cried Lola, running to her. "That’s all
right," she said, looking. "You’ll get more now, if you do well. I
had my picture in the ‘World’ once."

"Did you?" asked Carrie.

"Did I? Well, I should say," returned the little girl. "They had a
frame around it."

Carrie laughed.

"They’ve never published my picture."

"But they will," said Lola. "You’ll see. You do better than most
that get theirs in now."

Carrie felt deeply grateful for this. She almost loved Lola for the
sympathy and praise she extended. It was so helpful to her-so
almost necessary.

Fulfilling her part capably brought another notice in the papers
that she was doing her work acceptably. This pleased her
immensely. She began to think the world was taking note of her.

The first week she got her thirty-five dollars, it seemed an
enormous sum. Paving only three dollars for room rent seemed
ridiculous. After giving Lola her twenty-five, she still had seven
dollars left. With four left over from previous earnings, she had
eleven. Five of this went to pay the regular installment on the
clothes she had to buy. The next week she was even in greater
feather. Now, only

three dollars need be paid for room rent and five on her clothes.
The rest she had for food and her own whims.

"You’d better save a little for summer," cautioned Lola. "We’ll
probably close in May."

"I intend to," said Carrie.
<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next ->
PinkMonkey Digital Library-Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser

All Contents Copyright © All rights reserved.
Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.

About Us | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page

In Association with