[written after having his hat stolen]
We have been suffering from the seven years' itch for many months. It is probably the most aggravating disease in the world. It is contagious. That man has commenced a career of suffering which is frightful to contemplate; there is no cure for the distemper - it must run its course; there is no respite for its victim, and but little alleviation of its torments to be hoped for; the unfortunate's only resource is to bathe in sulphur and molasses and let his finger nails grow. Further advice is unnecessary - instinct will prompt him to scratch.
The Works of Mark Twain; Early Tales & Sketches, Vol. 1 1851-1864,
(Univ. of California Press, 1979), p. 182.]
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