Forest City Courier, Sept. 30, 1940
Today has been one of those days when nothing seems to have gone right and everything seems to have gone wrong. I reckon all of us have them. Monday should be a sort of inspiration for the week’s beginning, but sometimes it gets started off wrong. In a magazine today (when I should have been working instead of reading) I came across this quotation from Victor Hugo, which I think is a solution why we have days like this. If we heed this admonition everything and every day would work out better, I am sure.
“He who every morning plans the transactions of the day, and follows out that plan, carries a thread that will guide him through the labyrinth of the most busy life. The orderly arrangement of his time is like a ray of light which darts itself through all his occupation. But where no plan is laid, where the disposal of time surrendered merely to the chances of incidents, all things lie huddled together in one chaos, which admits neither distributions nor reviews.”
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Sunday was the birthday of a very important member of our household. After a conference with the rest of the family we decided to have the birthday dinner Saturday night. After the packages were opened and looked at, our young son brought in the birthday cake and placed it beside his father’s plate. I had asked a friend of mine in a neighboring town to bake it, and it was really a work of art. The word art brings to the mind a variety of work designed to please the eye. To one person it may suggest a beautiful painting; to another a graceful statue or the architecture of a beautiful cathedral. Art, to me, in a very broad sense, stand for those things which are the creations of a person, a product of the intellect and imagination as well as the work of the hands. But in whatever form it is in, Beauty is always associated with it. This friend of mind is talented in many other ways and this cake certainly measured up to every qualification of an artist. There would be a world of satisfaction and sheer joy in being able bake and design a cake that was too pretty to cut and eat; but I am afraid that both these things happened to it.
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In unearthing some old books recently I ran across an old calendar gotten out by a patent medicine company. It was for the year 1906. In a list of miscellaneous information these items were mentioned:
- “The nearest fixed star is 16,000,000,000 miles distant and takes three years to reach the earth.”
- “The average human life is thirty-one years.”
- “Measure 209 feet on each side you will have a square acre within an inch.”
- “Modern needles first came into use in 1545.”
Now, it did not tell the name of the name of the man or woman who figured out the distance of the nearest fixed star from the earth, but whoever it was, how does he or she know they are right? Anyway, that many ciphers are too much to worry about. About the average life of a human, that might have been the average when that calendar was printed thirty-four years ago, but medical science today has prolonged the average life of a person, and the fact that we know better how to take care of our health would give us good reason to live longer. You will have to figure that out yourself about the square acre, for I never did know much about square measure. And don’t tell me that women have been sewing with needles for 395 years, and we haven’t found out how to make a button stay on yet.
Reprinted with permission from The Daily Courier. Copyright owned by The Daily Courier.