The Efficiency Expert

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

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The gymnasium was packed as Jimmy Torrance stepped into the ring for the
final event of the evening that was to decide the boxing championship of
the university. Drawing to a close were the nearly four years of his
college career--profitable years, Jimmy considered them, and certainly
successful up to this point. In the beginning of his senior year he had
captained the varsity eleven, and in the coming spring he would again
sally forth upon the diamond as the star initial sacker of collegedom.

His football triumphs were in the past, his continued baseball successes
a foregone conclusion--if he won to-night his cup of happiness, and an
unassailably dominant position among his fellows, would be assured,
leaving nothing more, in so far as Jimmy reasoned, to be desired from
four years attendance at one of America's oldest and most famous

The youth who would dispute the right to championship honors with Jimmy
was a dark horse to the extent that he was a freshman, and, therefore,
practically unknown. He had worked hard, however, and given a good
account of himself in his preparations for the battle, and there were
rumors, as there always are about every campus, of marvelous exploits
prior to his college days. It was even darkly hinted that he was a
professional pugilist. As a matter of fact, he was the best exponent of
the manly art of self-defense that Jimmy Torrance had ever faced, and in
addition thereto he outweighed the senior and outreached him.

The boxing contest, as the faculty members of the athletic committee
preferred to call it, was, from the tap of the gong, as pretty a
two-fisted scrap as ever any aggregation of low-browed fight fans
witnessed. The details of this gory contest, while interesting, have no
particular bearing upon the development of this tale. What interests us
is the outcome, which occurred in the middle of a very bloody fourth
round, in which Jimmy Torrance scored a clean knock-out.

It was a battered but happy Jimmy who sat in his room the following
Monday afternoon, striving to concentrate his mind upon a college
text-book which should, by all the laws of fiction, have been 'well
thumbed,' but in reality, possessed unruffled freshness which belied its
real age.

"I wish," mused Jimmy, "that I could have got to the bird who invented
mathematics before he inflicted all this unnecessary anguish upon an
already unhappy world. In about three rounds I could have saved
thousands from the sorrow which I feel every time I open this blooming

He was still deeply engrossed in the

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