Something to Worry About


Something to Worry About

"Something to Worry About" is a short story by P. G. Wodehouse, which first appeared in the United Kingdom in the February 1913 issue of the "Strand". It was included in the UK collection "The Man Upstairs", (1914), and later appeared in the United States in the collection "The Swoop! and Other Stories" (1979).

Plot

Sally Preston, a London girl born and bred, is found to be an aficionado of the movies by her father, who disapproves of such entertainments, and is sent to stay with an aunt at a small, sleepy seaside village in Hampshire. She tells her story to Tom Kitchener, a simple young gardener next door, who promptly falls in love with her. So too do most of the other young men of the village, who begin to visit the house in increasing numbers.

Tom, too shy to visit and jealous of the men who do, decides to shower her with gifts; it being autumn and all the flowers gone, all he has to shower with are vegetables, which he proceeds to give generously. Her aunt's husband warns him off, but he rebels, proposes to her awkwardly, and is amazed to find himself accepted.

Tom buys her a puppy, and she soon finds herself in trouble with the local constable, for failing to put a collar on the dog. Trying to persuade Tom to take revenge on the man for her, she reveals that she has accepted proposals of marriage from several other local men, in a scheme to force her father to take her back to London, but she is worried by Tom's quiet responses.

He takes her along to the first of her other suitors, and fights him. Tom wins, despite the other man's greater size, and Sally is moved. He takes her along to the second, and fights him. Tom wins, despite the other's greater skill; Sally is smitten by Tom. He takes her along to the third, who denounces Sally. Tom tells her she will marry him, and she concurs. The story ends with Sally comparing the day's events with a movie she is fond of.

Sally's father appears to be a neighbour of Bowles, also an ex-butler turned landlord in London's Ebury Street.

ee also

* Categorised list of Wodehouse's short stories

External links

* [http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/6768 Free eBook of "The Man Upstairs"] at Project Gutenberg


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