Collected Quotes, Quote 4

Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.
C. S. Lewis

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More About People

When people aren’t asking question
They’re making suggestions
And when they’re not doing one of those
They’re either looking over your shoulder or stepping on your toes
And then as if that weren’t enough to annoy you
They employ you.
Anybody at leisure
Incurs everybody’s displeasure.
It seems to be very irking
To people at work to see other people not working,
So they tell you that work is wonderful medicine,
Just look at Firestone and Ford and Edison,
And they lecture you till they’re out of breath or something
And then if you don’t succumb they starve you to death or something.
All of which results in a nasty quirk:
That if you don’t want to work you have to work to earn enough money so that you won’t have to work.

By Ogden Nash.

And here is another poem by him, written very near his death. It doesn’t seem to be like the rest of his, but I like it.

Enter, breath;
Breath, slip out;
Blood, be channeled,
And wind about.
O, blessed breath and blood which strive
To keep this body of mine alive!
O gallant breath and blood
Which choose
To wage the battle
They must lose.

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None identifiable

I walked in the sun
And felt the grass on my feet
At last spring is here.

(haiku may occasionally be post-modernist, but I confess that I find the challenge of framing my thoughts into 17 syllables an enjoyable one).

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Carpe Diem and Biscotti Post

The HEadmaster and Equuschick both tried to post last night, but neither of them had much success. We thought it was our server, but I’m not so sure, now. I couldn’t even sign in to Blogger or Yahoo this morning. Being a dedicated internet junkie, I stopped at our local version of an internet cafe after dropping the Equuschick off at work this morning. I’m typing this post (as I did the previous one) from their computer, and they use the same ISP we do. It’s working instantly, just like it’s supposed to. Must be our computer.

Actually, I’m not here just because I’m a junkie, although that helps. We received a lot of traffic over the weekend from Hugh Hewitt, which tickled us pink and scared us to death at the same time. We are great admirers of his work. On Saturday night late I turned off comments because we had obviously attracted some not altogether friendly attention. Sunday night I turned the comments back on, and I needed to get online this morning to make sure there was nothing unseemly or unsuitable to a Common Room frequented by minor children and young maidens prone to blushing (there were no such comments, btw, so thank-you).

This internet cafe, btw, is a coffee shop with one computer. One. It’s in a back room where they also store extra tables, so the ambiance is a bit, um, well, like typing in a storage closet. I see they have a port and counter for another computer, but it must be out for repairs.

The coffee shop closes at 8 p.m., so I can’t come in here after the kids are in bed.

The coffee is decent, but we make better at home, the Headmaster being something of an afficianado, and the Headmistress being the sort who purchases whole organic coffee beans. The biscotti is indifferent, and the Headmistress makes some very tasty biscotti, as does the Equuschick. We use organic, freshly ground, whole wheat flour, naturally.

This seemingly mundane post is all rather tragic, really, if you only knew the Headmaster. His dream for years was to open a coffee shop when he got out of the military. His dreams were interrupted by an accident in a van. It rolled over three times, at least once on his arm, which was outside the window when the van started doing its gymnastics. He’s doing quite well, all things considered, but he put the coffee shop dream on the back burner while he worked on recovering the use of his hand and arm, and took a job managing a grocery store because the Headmaster is a workhorse who can’t quit.

Meanwhile, this coffee shop opened up just across the street from his grocery store. It’s the only one in town. It doesn’t always open at opening time. The coffee and biscotti are not as good as ours, and the Headmaster is sure he could have done it better, if only he’d started sooner.

So the Headmaster is working on other dreams, but he really wishes he’d done the Carpe Diem thing and started a coffee shop when we first arrived. Some dreams just aren’t meant to be. After all, when we first arrived, the Headmaster’s injuries made it impossible for him to do so much as hang a picture on the wall, let alone start a business. The Headmistress well remembers his incapacitation at the time, because she hit her thumb with the hammer while hanging that picture on the wall and tried not to cry, because she knew it would make the Headmaster feel terrible. The Headmistress is a bit of a wimp, and utterly disastrous with tools.

But she is pretty good at biscotti, and all this talk about it is making her hungry. I believe you will find the Headmistress in the kitchen whipping up some biscotti later this afternoon. You are welcome to join her for tea or coffee and biscotti at the kitchen table.

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The tale of a keyboard

Common Room Scholars have perused Leonoard Read’s story I, Pencil. They may also be interested in this tale of a keyboard.

Think of the arrangements and details worked out by people all over the world, just so I could buy that keyboard. Think of the decisions made by entrepreneurs and laborers from China to Alabama—style, color, size, shape. Think of the financial arrangements—money borrowed, insurance purchased, exchange rates figured, people hired, and freight haulers contracted…

While on the topic, I, Pepsi is pretty interesting, too.

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