Programming note: Tomorrow, Thursday I'll be back on UK telly for The Mark Steyn Show on GB News, live at 8pm British Summer Time - that's 3pm North American Eastern. You can watch from anywhere on the planet on the GB News livestream, which can be found right here. Immediately afterwards at 9pm BST/4pm Eastern I'll be on Serenade Radio for the Thursday replay of Steyn's Song of the Week.
Just ahead of Part Twenty-Five of our vernal diversion, The Fixed Period by Anthony Trollope, a quick thank you for all your kind words about Tales for Our Time. We always like to hear what you like and what you don't - and, if you've a particular favourite you think would suit this series, by all means pass it along.
And with that on to tonight's date with Mr Trollope. In his last hours in his former republic, the deposed president Neverbend goes to see his old friend Crassweller, who explains to him why the Fixed Period will never work:
The first man will never get used to it. That college will become a madhouse. You must think of some other mode of letting them pass their last year. Make them drunk, so that they shall not know what they are doing. Drug them and make them senseless; or, better still, come down upon them with absolute power, and carry them away to instant death. Let the veil of annihilation fall upon them before they know where they are. The Fixed Period, with all its damnable certainty, is a mistake. I have tried it and I know it.
There is a lot of truth in this observation, too:
There is nothing so hard but that enthusiasm will make it tolerable.
Members of The Mark Steyn Club can hear Part Twenty-Five of our adventure simply by clicking here and logging-in. Earlier episodes of The Fixed Period can be found here, and nearly sixty other Tales for Our Time here.
See you for Part Twenty-Six of The Fixed Period tomorrow - a few hours after Thursday's Mark Steyn Show on GB News.