Saturday, January 14, 2012

A fond memory …

I found this plaque hidden among my Christmas decorations and it took me back to the day that it was given to Dick, my husband. He had helped a friend out of a difficult situation and this was his friends way to express his thanks, knowing that it was one of his favorite sayings. Dick passed away in 1990 but every time I hear this quoted it jolts me back to that summer day in the ‘60s in upstate New York.

Robert Kennedy has been credited with saying this first but I felt sure that wasn’t correct so I did a little research and, sure enough, it is a quote from the Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw (July 1856 - November 1950).

The actual wording is… “I hear you say Why?, always Why? You see things, and say Why? but I dream things that never were and I say Why not?”

While I was researching I became enamored with some of the other quotes attributed to Shaw and thought I’d share my favorites with you. Here they are:

**The first prison I ever saw had inscribed on it CEASE TO DO EVIL: LEARN TO DO WELL; but as the inscription was on the outside, the prisoners could not read it.

**The secret of success is to offend the greatest number of people

**The sex relation is not a personal relation. It can be irresistibly desired and rapturously consummated between persons who could not endure one another for a day in any other relation.

**No public man in these islands ever believes that the Bible means what it says: he is always convinced that it says what he means.

**You must not suppose, because I am a man of letters, that I never tried to earn an honest living.

**Patriotism is, fundamentally, a conviction that a particular country is the best in the world because you were born in it…


Blogger Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hello Ginnie,

Great quotes. I have read some dramas of Bernard Shaw when I was young. I used to get these books from the public library. He was a self made successful writer. I understand before he launched his career in writing, he spent some two or three years sitting in the library and copying pager and pages of various books written by famous writers just to improve his writing skills. Even after he became very successful he did not use a comfortable table and chair to write because it will affect his creativity. He used to sit in a cramped room in an uncomfortable chair and do his writing. I am a great admirer of George Bernard Shaw. Now that you have written about him, I should check up for his books in the public library.

Wish you all the best,

10:07 PM  
Blogger Cazzie!!! said...

*The secret of success is to offend the greatest number of people...
gosh, just look at the newspapers and magazines.... so true!

3:35 AM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Ginnie, research is wonderful and so easy online. I too never knew the author the the quote so often attributed to RFK.

5:11 AM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Ginnie, research is wonderful and so easy online. I too never knew the author the the quote so often attributed to RFK.

5:11 AM  
Blogger P.N. Subramanian said...

It appears that Robert Kennedy made use of Bernard Shaw's quote beautifully. Now I too will prefer to go by Shaw when I call myself an Indian.
Enjoyed reading you.

5:12 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

All very interesting Ginnie. I particularly liked the last one. So true!
Thanks for visiting me and your well wishes on my surgery Tuesday.
Love Di ♥

5:17 AM  
Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

What delightful quotes. I am adding George Bernard Shaw to my list of those living or dead I'd like to spend a day with.

6:45 AM  
Anonymous schmidleysscribblins, said...

I saw the photograph and thought, "My goodness, Ginnie's husband looks like GBS. I like Shaw. I used one of his poems, 'The Stolen Child' for a Toastmaster's speech. Otherwise, I know he was interested in the Tarot and other magical things. He also frequently got himself into hot water. He was a fun guy.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Fantastic quotes, Ginny. I confess that I know nothing about the guy. There is a Shaw festival at Niagara on the Lake. We were in the town last spring but not for the festival.

6:52 AM  
Blogger NCmountainwoman said...

I also love Shaw. He had such a way with words and so many still ring true.

4:34 PM  
Anonymous Big John said...

... and he wasn't half bad at writing plays. :-)

7:13 AM  
Blogger KGMom said...

Ah, G.B. Shaw--he is almost a forgotten playwright these days.
I think it is acknowledged that politicians have speech writers who craft speeches for them, using words of wisdom. I seem to recall that acknowledgement about this quote, and other Kennedy quotes over time.

4:37 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

I have always liked that quote and the one about sex is terrific!! (and true) lol

5:19 PM  
Blogger possum said...

I have used several of Shaw's quotes to open my Sunday's Musings. This quote reminded me of a final exam in a philosophy class. The question was "Why?" I answered, "Why not?" turned my paper in and got an A. LOL!

Glad to have my computer back... maybe we can catch up!

5:09 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

Thanks ,Ginnie, for bringing these up. He had some great quotes. I especially liked the sex, bible and country quotes.

7:07 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home