"Would Have Taken Better Care of Myself"

George Thompson george.thompson at NYU.EDU
Fri Apr 2 15:22:50 UTC 2004

My father said this in the mid-1960s -- he died in 1969 -- so it had currency among the folk as well as among university presidents.


George A. Thompson
Author of A Documentary History of "The African
Theatre", Northwestern Univ. Pr., 1998.

----- Original Message -----
From: Sam Clements <SClements at NEO.RR.COM>
Date: Thursday, April 1, 2004 7:05 pm
Subject: Re: "Would Have Taken Better Care of Myself"

> From: "Fred Shapiro" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
> Subject: "Would Have Taken Better Care of Myself"
> > Can Barry or Sam or Doug or anyone else provide any pre-1966
> usages of the
> > expression "If I'd known I was going to live this long, I would have
> > taken better care of myself," or variants thereof?
>  10 April, 1943.  _Lethbridge(Alberta) Herald_   2/4
> a column titled 'Reflections at 44' (Robert Maynard Hutchins,
> President,Univ. of Chicago)
> <<On Dec. 31 I completed 20 years in university administration.  This
> reflection causes me some pangs.
>   Lord Northington said in 1765, when the gout caught up with
> him, "If I
> had known that these legs of mine were to carry a lord chancellor,
> I would
> have taken better care of them when I was a lad".  If I had known
> that this
> head of mine was to be used by a university president, I would
> have tried to
> get some education when I was at Yale.>>
> Sam Clements

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