"Come at once if convenient -- if inconvenient, come all the same."This quote is both funny and infuriating, at least to me.
-- Sherlock Holmes, "The Adventure of the Creeping Man"
But above all, it is so typically Sherlock Holmes that it is hard to imagine it coming from anyone else. So when this summons occurs in only slightly altered form via text in an episode of BBC's "Sherlock," it's another of those touches that assures us the character in this excellent series is the same even though the millennium and the technology have changed.
I've always assumed that this message was delivered by wire in the original story -- Holmes was fond of sending them even in the early telephone age -- but the story doesn't specify. It could just have easily been a note delivered to Watson's home by one of the Baker Street Irregulars.
However the message was delivered, it carries a peremptory undertone that is certainly presumptuous and arguably arrogant. Even though Watson has remarried, Holmes just assumes the good doctor remains at his beck and call. But honestly, now -- given the chance -- wouldn't you be?