A funny memento: in Feb, 2004 I was doing a project that involved favorite quotations and got this email from my mom: “Well, you got your father’s pen going and he had to write out a few of his quotes.”
So these are the quotes my father had carried with him all his life and remembered at age 81:
* The joy of victory, the sorrow of defeat [T. Roosevelt]
* A day that will live in infamy! [F. D. Roosevelt]
* It ain’t braggin’ when you do what you say you’re going to do. [“Me and Paul” — Dizzy Dean]
* There is no such thing as a “good loser”! [Vice Lombardi, Football Coach]
* We wuz robbed! [Joe Jacobs, Mgr for Max Schmelling. Max Schmelling was Germany’s Heavyweight champ. The first “super race” fighter, so called by Hitler. He later beat the great Joe Louis. Louis knocked him out in 30 seconds later that year.]
* Guns are not lawful, nooses give, gas smells awful, might as well live. [Dorothy Parker]
* One martini is fine
Two at the very most
Three, I’m under the table
Four I’m under my host
* Et tu, Brute [2nd year Latin]
* “Did you ever feel that whole world is a tuxedo and you’re a pair of brown shoes?” [George Gobel, comedian]
* The next time you get lilies, you won’t be able to smell them. [My father to my mother]
What’s with that last quote? I had to ask. So my dad dictated this note:
Easter Saturday, in the very heart of the Depression there was no extra money especially after purchasing new clothes and shoes for Jack, Bill and me.
As was customary, Dad had been at the shop making up stock items, like screens and having a little libation as was customary every Saturday morning with his brothers Sam, Frank and Tab. I was at the front door when he came in with an armful of lilies.
Well, my Mother flew into him. He took it well then very calmly put his hand on her shoulder and said, “Bridge, the next time you get lilies from me, you won’t be able to smell them!”
It is a tribute to what a gentle man my grandpa actually was that my dad found this droll statement so hilarious.
It is tempting to psychoanalyze why these were the quotes that stuck: sports, war, Dorothy Parker… a wry perspective on life.