December 31, 2015

10 things friends don’t let friends do...


Friends don't let friends drive drunk ad
THE FAMOUS ORIGINAL AD SLOGAN:

“Friends don’t let friends drive drunk.” 
       Public service ad slogan
launched nationwide in the U.S. in 1983 
       First used in billboard ads by the Outdoor Advertising Association, then used in a series of memorable
TV commercials aired by the Ad Council.

Mark Zuckerberg Is Not Giving You Money

THE ZUCKERBERG MONEY MEME VERSION:

"Friends don't let friends copy and paste memes."
      
Amit Chowdhry
       Tech journalist for Forbes magazine
       Headline for
his Dec. 29, 2015 post on Forbes.com about those absurd Facebook posts that say Mark Zuckerberg is giving away money to people who repost Facebook posts that say that Mark Zuckerberg is giving away money.

Friends don’t let friends vote Trump

THE CELEBRITY CANDIDATE VERSION:

“Friends don't let friends vote Trump”
       T-shirt slogan
on Zazzle.com. (Of course, there are similar versions naming Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and other candidates. ‘Tis the season for politics.)

Ban wine

THE WINE SNOB DICTUM:

“Friends don’t let friends drink chardonnay.”
       Michele Anna Jordan 
       Restaurant and food critic and author
       In her book
The Good Cook’s Book of Days (1995)

WALKING-DEAD_Rick pointing gun

THE WALKING DEAD DICTUM:

“Friends don’t let friends reanimate.”
    
T-shirt slogan suggesting what every Walking Dead fan knows they need to do if their friend is bitten by a zombie.

Friends don't let friends drink & dive

THE SCUBA LOVERS VARIATION:

“Friends don't let friends drink and dive.”
       An "alcohol demotivational poster"
on the DemotivationalPosters.org site.

Friends don't let friends eat lilies

THE CAT LOVERS VARIATION:

“Friends don't let friends eat lilies.”
       Seriously! As explained
on the PreventiveVet.com site: “It takes only a nibble on one leaf or stem, or the ingestion of a small amount of lily pollen (easy to do when a cat grooms itself) to send a cat into acute kidney failure.”

friends don't let friends do silly things

THE SILLY FRIENDS VARIATION:

“Friends don't let friends do silly things ... alone.”
       A cute photo meme
on the WeHeartIt.com site

Friends don't let friends bully

THE ANTI-BULLY SLOGAN:

“Friends don’t let friends bully”
       Slogan for a public service advertising campaign launched in 2015
by the Seattle-based Free2Luv.org organization.

Friends don’t let friends watch football

THE ANTI-FOOTBALL SLOGAN:

“Friends don’t let friends watch college football”
     
A QuickMeme.com photo quip that some people (including me) can relate to.

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November 1, 2015

Charity, love and a prenup cover a multitude of sins...


THE FAMOUS BIBLICAL QUOTE:

“And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.”  
      
Saint Peter (c. 1 BC-c. 67 AD)
       Galilean-born Apostle of Jesus and early Christian leader
       His famous words in
I Peter 4:8, as translated in the King James Bible. Most later version of the Bible use the word love in place of charity.
       Chapter 4, Verse 8 of the
“First Epistle of Peter” (usually referred to as I Peter 4:8) is the origin of the sayings “charity covers a multitude of sins” and “love covers a multitude of sins.” These reflect two different translations of a word originally written in Greek by Peter. Although most familiar Bible quotes are from the King James version, “love covers a multitude of sins” has become the more commonly heard version.
       Peter actually used the Greek word agape for the thing that covers a multitude of sins. In the early Catholic Church’s Vulgate Bible and in the King James Version, agape was translated as charity. In later versions, it was translated as love. But in early Christian theology it didn’t quite mean what we now think of when we use either of those words. Agape refers to a more profound concept that can’t easily be translated into a single English word. It means a feeling of charitable compassion, empathy and non-romantic love toward other people, like the love God and Jesus Christ are said to have for mankind; a higher love that can look past and forgive — and thus “cover” and accept — other people’s faults and transgressions. 
       The famed Bible quote was not intended to mean that if someone gives enough alms to the poor or donates enough money to charities it will atone for or “cover up” their sins and let them get past St. Peter into the Pearly Gates of Heaven. Nonetheless, in common use, variations of the saying “charity covers a multitude of sins” are often used to suggest that doing or having a certain thing will hide or excuse something else.


THE #TRUMPBIBLE VERSION:

“Love covers a multitude of sins. Sure. But you’d be nuts not to get a prenup. I mean, c’mon. #TrumpBible.” 
       Eric Metaxas
       Pastor, author and radio show host
       One of Metaxas's suggested additions to the funny faux Donald Trump quotes featured on the #TrumpBible Twitter page, which mocks Trump’s claim to be a Christian (and Trump in general). Illustration by Jordan Awan.


MOTHER TERESA’S POIGNANT VERSION:

“The conditions under which the leper families live are terrible...Sometimes the pain is so great that I feel as if everything will break. The smile is a big cloak which covers a multitude of pains.”
      
Mother Teresa (1910-1997)
       Albanian-born Catholic nun known for her humanitarian efforts in India
      
In a letter quoted in the book Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light: the Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta (2007), edited by Brian Kolodiejchuk


OSCAR WILDE’S SOCIALIST VARIATION:

“The proper aim is to try and reconstruct society on such a basis that poverty will be impossible... Charity creates a multitude of sins. There is also this to be said. It is immoral to use private property in order to alleviate the horrible evils that result from the institution of private property. It is both immoral and unfair.”
      
Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)
       Irish playwright, poet, social critic and wit
       In his essay
“The Soul of Man Under Socialism” (1891)


CARL SAGAN’S OBSERVATION:

“The word ‘god’ is used to cover a vast multitude of mutually exclusive ideas. And the distinctions are, I believe in some cases, intentionally fuzzed so that no one will be offended that people are not talking about their god.”
      
Carl Sagan (1934-1996)
       American astronomer, astrophysicist, cosmologist and author 
       Remark in a lecture included in the book
The Varieties of Scientific Experience: A Personal View of the Search for God (2007)


CAPTAIN KIRK’S QUIP:

“That helmet covers a multitude of sins.”
      
Captain James T. Kirk (actor William Shatner) 
       Kirk makes this joking remark
to Spock (Leonard Nimoy) in the Star Trek episode “Patterns of Force” (Season 2, Episode 21). He’s referring to the helmet Spock puts on during their visit to a planet run by a Nazi-inspired government. The helmet covers Spock’s pointed Vulcan ears, thus helping to hide the fact that he is an alien.

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September 1, 2015

Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty: updated and adapted…


ORIGIN OF THE FAMOUS QUOTE:

“Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.”
      
Wendell Phillips (1811-1884)
       American Abolitionist and liberal activist
       In a
speech to the Massachusetts Anti-Slavery Society on January 28, 1852
       This quotation is often mistakenly attributed to Irish lawyer and politician John Philpot Curran (1750–1817) or to various American Founding Fathers, most commonly Thomas Jefferson. Similar quotes by Curran, Jefferson and others do predate the speech by Phillips, but he created the formulation we are most familiar with today in his 1852 speech.
       What Curran said, in
a speech in Dublin on July 10, 1790, was: “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance.”
       The common misattribution to Thomas Jefferson may derive from a quote inscribed on the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC: “I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.” This comes from a
letter Jefferson wrote to Dr. Benjamin Rush on September 23, 1800, in which he stressed his determination to prevent Christian clergyman from imposing their particular brands of religion on other Americans.
       See
this post on my This Day in Quotes site for more background.


THE '80S VERSION THAT’S STILL RELEVANT TODAY:

“We must constantly train and equip our people and upgrade our technology to meet these ever-growing and ever-changing challenges. Eternal vigilance is the price for continuing security.” 
      James R. Schlesinger (1929-2014)
       American government official who served as CIA director, Secretary of Defense and the first U.S. Secretary of Energy
       His version of the “eternal vigilance” saying comes from his July 1987 “Report to the Secretary of State on the Moscow Chancery Construction Project.” The report was commissioned after it was discovered that Soviet Russian spy agencies had planted an array of high tech listening and recording devices in the newly-constructed American Embassy building in Moscow. Given the more recent hacking of U.S. government computer systems by China and freelance hackers, his observation still seems relevant.


DUTCH’S LAW:

“Eternal vigilance is not the price of liberty. It’s the price of everything. Every object you own has to be maintained. In society, there will always be people who oppose whatever you hold dear. They will try to overturn, evade or weaken your reforms. Others will seek power, wealth, or status without doing any work. The only way to keep what you have is to guard it constantly.”
      
Prof. Steven Dutch
       Professor of Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin–Green Bay
       One of
Dutch’s Laws of Just About Everything 


ALDOUS HUXLEY’S TAKE:

“Eternal vigilance is not only the price of liberty; eternal vigilance is the price of human decency.”
      
Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)
       English novelist and social critic
       From his introduction to the radio version of his novel Brave New World,
produced by William Froug for CBS Radio in 1965


COLD WARRIOR QUOTE:

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance and a willingness to act in its defense.” 
      
George P. Shultz
       U.S. Secretary of State under President Ronald Reagan
       A saber-rattling variation
attributed to Schultz


SURFING FREEDOM VARIATION:

“The price of surfing freedom is eternal vigilance.”
      
Jay Garmon 
       A “professional geek, Web entrepreneur, and occasional science fiction writer”
       In a
post about online privacy tools (and the unfortunate need for them)

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July 22, 2015

“Half the world…” (vs. the other half)


THE OLD PROVERBIAL SAYING:

“Half the world doesn’t know how the other half lives.”
(“La moitié du monde ne sait comment l’autre vit.”) 
      
François Rabelais (c. 1494-c. 1553)
       French satirist
       Many sources attribute the origin of this saying to its use by Rabelais in his novel Pantagruel (the first of his five Gargantua and Pantagruel novels). In the novel it is cited by the character Alcofribas as something that “is said,” clearly indicating it was already proverbial in French.
       It was also a proverbial in English by the mid-1600s. In 1640, it was recorded by the Anglican priest, poet and collector of proverbs George Herbert in his book Outlandish Proverbs (later reprinted as Jacula Prudentum) in the form: “Half the world knows not how the other half lives.”
       Initially, and throughout the centuries, the saying has generally been used to mean that people who were rich or financially secure could not understand the how hard life was for people who were poor. Photographer and journalist Jacob Riis helped embed that meaning into American culture with the publication of his classic “muckraking” book How the Other Half Lives (1890), which helped raise awareness of the deplorable living and working conditions of poor people in the slums of New York City.


THE OFT-MISCONTRUED JANE AUSTEN QUOTE:

“One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other.” 
      
Jane Austen (1775-1817)
       British novelist 
       A famous line from Austen’s novel Emma (1815)
       It is often assumed and even asserted that Austen intended this quote to mean that men can’t understand how women feel or how they think about matters related to sex, love, relationships and other things that make women different from men. But in the context of its use in the novel, it seems to be a much broader generalization that is not about (or at least not just about) sexism or the differences between the sexes.
       In Volume 1, Chapter 9, Emma’s father remarks that he can’t understand why some young children enjoy having an adult toss them “up to the ceiling in a very frightful way!”
       Emma responds: “That is the case with us all, papa. One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other.”


SIR DAVY’S COUNTERQUOTE:

“Half the world doesn’t care how the other half lives.”
      
Sir Humphry Davy (1778-1829)
       British chemist and inventor
       A pithy quote by Davy included in The Collected Works of Sir Humphry Davy (1839)


A MUSICAL VARIATION:

“Half the world hates
What half the world does every day”
       Lyrics from the song “Half the World” by the rock band Rush
       (Band member and drummer Neil Peart wrote the lyrics.)
       On the band’s Test For Echo album (1996)


E.W. HOWE’S THEORY:

“Half the world does not know how the other half lives, but is trying to find out.”
      
Edgar Watson Howe (1853-1937)
       American journalist and novelist
       A quote cited in his book Country Town Sayings (1911)


MR. MOTO’S VARIATION:

“Half the world spends its time laughing at the other half, and both are fools.” 
      
Mr. Moto (played by a
ctor Peter Lorre)
       In the 1937 film Think Fast, Mr. Moto. (Based on the novel of the same name by Mr. Moto’s creator John P. Marquand.)

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July 5, 2015

“Man’s inhumanity to man…”


THE WORDS BURNS BURNT INTO OUR LANGUAGE:

“Man’s inhumanity to man
Makes countless thousands mourn!”

      
Robert Burns (1759-1796)
       Scottish poet and lyricist
      
“Man Was Made to Mourn: A Dirge” (1784), stanza 7
       The phrase “man’s inhumanity to man” was coined in this poem, written by Burns in 1784. It was included in his first book of poetry, Poems, Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect, also known as
the Kilmarnock edition. That volume, published in 1786, made Burns famous and contains several poems that gave us immortal phrases, including: “man’s inhumanity to man,” “the best laid schemes of mice and men” (from “To a Mouse”) and “to see ourselves as others see us” (from “To a Louse” ).
       “Man Was Made to Mourn” reflects Burns’ antipathy toward the social and economic caste system that had been imposed on Scotland by Great Britain, which created a huge, poor, disenfranchised underclass and benefited a relatively small number of wealthy landowners and businessmen. The poem also seems to subtly reflect Burns’ support for Scottish independence —
a radical position at the time.


A MODERATE MUSLIM'S VIEW OF ISIS:

“The story of ISIS is not about Islam, it is about the universal human story of cruelty and man’s inhumanity to man, whether it be ISIS, Nazism, fascism or pure hatred of others. Intolerance and arrogance mixed with power and politics has caused most wars.”
       Alia Hogben
       Executive Director of the Canadian Council of Muslim Women
       In an op-ed published by The Kingston Whig-Standard, October 8, 2014
       (Cartoon by artist Steve Greenberg)


THE ANTI-APARTHEID ACTIVIST’S ANTIDOTE:

“There is only one way in which one can endure man’s inhumanity to man and that is to try, in one’s own life, to exemplify man’s humanity to man.”
      
Alan Paton (1903-1988)
       South African writer and anti-apartheid activist
      
From his essay “The Challenge of Fear,” originally published in the Saturday Review, September 9, 1967


THE ANARCHIST’S ANTIDOTE:

“Revolution is the negation of the existing, a violent protest against man’s inhumanity to man with all the thousand and one slaveries it involves. It is the destroyer of dominant values upon which a complex system of injustice, oppression, and wrong has been built up by ignorance and brutality.” 
      
Emma Goldman (1869-1940)
       Russian-born social activist and anarchist
      
In her book My Disillusionment in Russia (1925)


A FEMINIST’S PERSPECTIVE:

“Given the reality of female oppression, how women treat each other matters more, not less...I am not saying that woman’s inhumanity to woman is on the same level as man’s inhumanity to woman; it is not. But women have enormous influence over each other; we have the power to encourage each other to either resist or to collaborate with tyranny.”
      
Phyllis Chesler
       Pioneering feminist and Professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies at City University of New York
      
In the introduction of her book Woman’s Inhumanity to Woman (2009)


THE ANIMALS’ PERSPECTIVE:

“Man’s inhumanity to man has received a lot of press, but man’s inhumanity to animals is worse, by far, if such a thing can be imagined. It is remarkable that animals will have anything whatever to do with us.”
       D. V. Barrett 
      
In the book Little Thoughts, Big Oughts (2001)

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July 2, 2015

Of all sad words of tongue or pen – which are the saddest?


FAMOUS LINES OF REGRET:

“Of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: ‘It might have been!’” 
       John Greenleaf Whittier
(1807-1892) 
       American poet and anti-slavery activist
       The oft-quoted lines from his poem
“Maud Muller” (1856) 
       Whittier’s “Maud Muller” tells the story of a poor farm maid and a wealthy judge who saw each other in passing when they were young. Maud thinks it would be nice to be married to a rich, high-society man like the judge. The judge thinks it would be nice to be married to a beautiful farm girl like Maud and lead the pastoral life of a farmer. But, because of the class-based social conventions of the time, neither one acts on their mutual attraction. They simply pass each other by. Later in life, when they are both stuck in unfulfilling marriages, they think sadly about the life they might have had together. The final lines of the poem note that many people have such regrets, saying:      
      “God pity them both! and pity us all,

       Who vainly the dreams of youth recall;   
       For of all sad words of tongue or pen, 
       The saddest are these: ‘It might have been!’ 
       Ah, well! for us all some sweet hope lies 
       Deeply buried from human eyes;   
       And, in the hereafter, angels may 
       Roll the stone from its grave away!”
 


THE FORMER FRIEND’S LAMENT:

“Of all cold words of tongue or pen
The worst are these: ‘I knew him when – ’”
      Arthur Guiterman (1871-1943)
       American writer best known for
his humorous poems
       From a poem in his book Prophets in Their Own Country (1927)


THE STUDENT’S LAMENT:

“Of all sad words of lip or pen
The worst are these, ‘I’ve flunked again.’” 
       Parody poem published in the University of Michigan’s Chronicle magazine in 1883


THE GARDENER’S LAMENT:

“The Moral is that gardeners pine
Whene’er no pods adorn the vine.
Of all sad words experience gleans
The saddest are: ‘It might have beans.’” 
       Guy Wetmore Carryl (1873-1904)
       American humorist and poet.
       From his book
Grimm Tales Made Gay (1902)


THE GOLFER’S LAMENT:

“Of all sad words that I've ever seen.
The saddest are ‘Three putts to the green.’” 
       Poem published in
The American Golfer magazine in 1910 (p. 153)


THE WIFE’S LAMENT:

“Of all sad words asked married men
The saddest are these: Where have you been?” 
       Letter to the editor of Time Magazine, April 25, 1960


THE FILM CRITIC'S LAMENT:

“Of all the sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these, Michael Bay is making another ‘Transformers’ movie.”
       Cody Clark 
       Film critic
       In one of his reviews published in the Provo, Utah Daily Herald

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