On Advice (May 11, 2009)

“It all comes down to self-respect and respect for human dignity.”

“You boys must understand and accept two rules.  Never ever under any circumstances or for any reason or provocation hurt a woman, physically or psychologically.  Always defend her if she is threatened even if the defense threatens your life.  Never depart from these rules.”

“Everything in life costs time, money and/or emotion.  Of all the things in this life you pursue, you will expend more time, more money and more emotion on women than you will on anything else.”

“If she is choosing between you and someone else, tell her what you think and how you feel about her.  She decides.  If you don’t make the cut, walk away without a word.”

“If you ever hurt which you will, remember that time is the great tincture.”

“If you say you are going to call, call.  If you do not intend to call, do not say you are going to call.  It’s simple”

“If you can keep your head, you will do fine.”

“Okay, this is not that simple.”

[With a nod to Montaigne’s Essais.]

Bumper stickers of the week:

Dad defines the man; Mom defines the person.

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

“If”  by Rudyard Kipling.  (Reprinted without permission which will be sought in due course.  One hopes there is understanding.)

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