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Posts tagged "Booth Tarkington"

When I Was an Adult I Read Books, to Remain a Child

When I Was an Adult I Read Books, to Remain a Child

The following piece was recently shared with Mockingbird. The “librarian,” whose name is not Paul Zahl (seriously!), has given us permission to post it here. Note from the librarian: This reading diary, penned by LeVar Burton, was recently discovered in the archives of a theological library. The manuscript, handwritten on napkins and folded away inside […]

Keeping a Quiet Heart at Seventy Miles an Hour

In Booth Tarkington’s 1915 novel The Turmoil, the character ‘Bibbs Sheridan’ suffers a nervous breakdown as a young man and is confined to a sanatorium. During this period he composes an essay entitled “Leisure”, from which the following (stunning) excerpt comes. A nice addendum to Will’s yesterday’s post about happiness:

“A man may keep a quiet heart at seventy miles an hour, but not if he is running the train. Nor is the habit of contemplation a useful quality in the stoker of a foundry furnace; it will not be found to recommend him to the approbation of his superiors. For a profession adapted solely to the pursuit of happiness in thinking, I would choose that of an invalid: his money is time and he may spend it on Olympus. It will not suffice to be an amateur invalid. To my way of thinking, the perfect practitioner must be to all outward purposes already dead if he is to begin the perfect enjoyment of life. His serenity must not be disturbed by rumors of recovery.

PZ's Podcast: Changing Social Conditions in Indianapolis and The Happiest Actual Life

PZ’s Podcast: Changing Social Conditions in Indianapolis and The Happiest Actual Life

EPISODE 158: Changing Social Conditions in Indianapolis Credible hope — hope that works — something to dispel the advancing clouds of agnosticism. Those clouds really do exist for people, especially as life begins to flummox them. Combined with alcohol, they’ll do you in. Booth Tarkington found a gem of hope at the end of his […]