Fantastic Fables by Ambrose Bierce: The Nightside of Character
The Nightside of Character
A GIFTED and Honourable Editor, who by practice of his profession had acquired wealth and distinction, applied to an Old Friend for the hand of his daughter in marriage.
"With all my heart, and God bless you!" said the Old Friend, grasping him by both hands. "It is a greater honour than I had dared to hope for."
"I knew what your answer would be," replied the Gifted and Honourable Editor. "And yet," he added, with a sly smile, "I feel that I ought to give you as much knowledge of my character as I possess. In this scrap-book is such testimony relating to my shady side, as I have within the past ten years been able to cut from the columns of my competitors in the business of elevating humanity to a higher plane of mind and morals - my 'loathsome contemporaries.'"
Laying the book on a table, he withdrew in high spirits to make arrangements for the wedding. Three days later he received the scrap-book from a messenger, with a note warning him never again to darken his Old Friend's door.
"See!" the Gifted and Honourable Editor exclaimed, pointing to that injunction - "I am a painter and grainer!"
And he was led away to the Asylum for the Indiscreet.