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Love your Mother. April 23, 2008

Posted by ourfriendben in Uncategorized, wit and wisdom.
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It’s me, Richard Saunders of Poor Richard’s Almanac fame, here today to give you a little food for thought in honor of Earth Day. (And I agree with the bumper sticker that says “Earth Day is every day.” For all our sakes, it had better be!)

I’ll start out with some excerpts from the famous speech made by Chief Seattle of the Suquamish in 1854. There are several versions of the speech, and a great deal of argument about what Seattle actually said. But to me, this is detracting from the point, which is the soul-piercing nature of the great leader’s comments. So let’s forget the controversy and listen to the words:

“Man did not weave the web of life—he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.

“What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of the spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man. All things are connected.

“Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of earth. If men spit upon the ground, they spit upon themselves.

“This we know: the earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. All things are connected.

“The earth is precious to Him [God], and to harm the earth is to heap contempt on its creator.”

(Our friend Ben, who is once again here reading over my shoulder, feels especially strongly about this last point. Our friend Ben doesn’t understand how someone can claim to worship God Creator on one hand while desecrating the creation on the other.)

As you might imagine, Mahatma Gandhi also had a point to make in this regard. He said: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

Food for thought, eh? Let me end this post with a great quote from a bumper sticker offered by the Northern Sun catalog (www.northernsun.com), a compendium of truly great earth-friendly merchandise: “Don’t bite the land that feeds you.” I think that pretty much says it all. But if you all have any great earth-friendly quotes to share, I’d love to hear them! So please write in with your faves.   

Crazy mixed-up quotes. April 16, 2008

Posted by ourfriendben in Ben Franklin, Uncategorized, wit and wisdom.
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1 comment so far

It’s me, Richard Saunders of Poor Richard’s Almanac fame, back today to get your brain cells working with a little quotation quiz. Below, I’ve listed ten memorable quotes. Do you know who said them? I’ve also listed the speakers’ names. But guess what, they’re all mixed up! (And to make things a little harder, I’ve added two “extra” speakers to the mix, but haven’t provided quotes from them.) See how many speakers you can match to their quotes. (And yes, of course I give you the answers. But no cheating, now!) Let’s get started:

1. If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.

2. We have nothing to fear but fear itself.*

3. Though an old man, I am but a young gardener.

4. When you can do the common things of life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world.

5. We are not amused.

6. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

7. A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything but the value of nothing.

8. Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.

9. We have guided missiles and misguided men.

10. Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.

a. George Washington Carver

b. George Washington

c. Albert Einstein

d. Queen Victoria

e. Confucius

f. Benjamin Franklin

g. Martin Luther King, Jr.

h. Mahatma Gandhi

i. Thomas Jefferson

j. Dorothy Parker

k. Oscar Wilde

l. Franklin Delano Roosevelt

* This is actually a misquote, though it’s the one we all know. The real quote is “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

And now, the answers: 1-j, 2-l, 3-i, 4-a, 5-d, 6-f, 7-k, 8-e, 9-g, 10-h.

The “bonus quotees” were Albert Einstein and George Washington.  

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