Judge Joes

Damon Runyon

Judge Joes was seventy-five years old.

He had seven of his own teeth.

He could hear good, too, unless you asked him for money.

He had $8,000 cash in the bank.

He had a little arthritis in his knees, but it only bothered him when the weather got cold.

Judge Joes was highly respected in Our Town. He had held many offices of public trust. He had been married a couple of times, and had grown sons and daughters, and a few grandchildren here and there.

They all raised a terrible row when Judge Joes decided to get married again, especially when he picked out Miss Anastacia Club, who was only twenty-seven. She was a nice girl.

She had been Judge Joes’ secretary for some years.

When Judge Joes announced that he was going to marry Miss Anastacia Club, everybody said they had suspected them for a long time.

Judge Joes’ children and grandchildren said he must be crazy.

They talked of putting him away.

Other people said he was a nincompoop.

Miss Anastacia Club said the reason she was marrying was because she loved and respected him.

Everybody in Our Town laughed.

Everybody said Miss Anastacia Club must be after his money.

But Judge Joes and Miss Anastacia Club went ahead and got married just the same, and Judge Joes announced that he was giving all his money to his children and grandchildren immediately, so they all attended the wedding and wished them many happy returns.

None of them meant it.

It was a nice occasion, and everything went off well, except that Judge Joes forgot to bring his upper plate, and his answers to the minister could hardly be understood.

Judge Joes’ children and grandchildren were pretty hot when it came out afterwards that Miss Anastacia Club had money of her own that had been left to her.

They talked of suing her.

The marriage turned out a happy one, but it caused a lot of trouble.

For the next two years, the young gals in Our Town couldn’t go along the street without a bodyguard because of the old plugs from sixty years and up trying to flirt.