I am still dealing with boxes of stuff packed away for the house remodeling and then boxes left over from the garage sale. Last night I was sorting through yet one more of those boxes and came across a little book titled The Quotable Woman. All progress stopped as I made the mistake of thumbing through it. What I discovered was that all the good quotes have already been credited to someone else! Just like all the good book titles have already been taken. I mean, how much more melodious and inviting can a title get than A River Runs Through It ?
But back to the quotes; all kinds of collections of quotes are out there, and while all of them are not particularly profound or funny or insightful, wouldn’t it be neat to have said something someone thought worthy of being recorded and passed on? I guess part of it, for me, is to think that I would be leaving something of value and that someone in the future would read it, have an epiphany and think I was really a profound thinker. Right. Like that is going to happen. Besides saying something profound, it really helps to get it into print if you also happen to be famous, so given that I am not famous or profound, well, there you have it.
I have always liked little quotes and sayings (see “The Vitamind,” December 15, 2010) because sometimes they just hit the nail right on the head and stick with you. For instance, many is the time I can relate to “Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.” Mostly I do the just sitting part. I always thought Pogo from the comic strip said that, but it turns out it was Satchel Paige, the great baseball player. He must have been quite the philosopher because I came across another pithy comment credited to him in what I thought was a great birthday card, which had two old men playing leap-frog and another Satchel Paige quote underneath: “Age is a question of mind over matter; if you don’t mind, age don’t matter.” Pogo did make the observation that “We have met the enemy and he is us,” and really, haven’t we all been the instigator of many of our own problems and crises from time to time? Be honest. You know you have. I certainly have. The Will Rogers poster I used in my classroom at school still reminds me that “Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects,” something we all should consider in those moments when we get judgmental.
About the only insightful thing I can remember coming up with is that when the kids were teenagers we stumbled onto the awful truth that “It’s not what you know, it’s not who you know, but how you look that makes the difference.” Are we cynics at my house, or in this day and age, just realists? And I could go on and on with great stuff other people have said, words to live by, if you will, but I will leave you with one that helps in many situations: “A life well-lived is the best revenge.”
But then I try to remember this one at mealtime, which comes from that great thinker, Miss Piggy: “Never eat more than you can lift.”
What’s your favorite quote?