The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from The Mirror of the Sea by Joseph Conrad:|
I restrained the obvious retort that in this way he ran the risk of
making, in the words of the immortal Mr. Mantalini, "a demnition
damp, unpleasant corpse of him."
"He wants to be a locksmith!" burst out Cervoni. "To learn how to
pick locks, I suppose," he added with sardonic bitterness.
"Why not let him be a locksmith?" I ventured.
"Who would teach him?" he cried. "Where could I leave him?" he
asked, with a drop in his voice; and I had my first glimpse of
genuine despair. "He steals, you know, alas! PAR TA MADONNE! I
believe he would put poison in your food and mine - the viper!"
He raised his face and both his clenched fists slowly to heaven.
The Mirror of the Sea