Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Amtal Rule

One does not argue about The Wind in the Willows. The young man gives it to the girl with whom he is in love, and, if she does not like it, asks her to return his letters. The older man tries it on his nephew, and alters his will accordingly. The book is a test of character. We can't criticize it, because it is criticizing us. But I must give you one word of warning. When you sit down to it, don't be so ridiculous as to suppose that you are sitting in judgment on my taste, or on the art of Kenneth Grahame. You are merely sitting in judgment on yourself. You may be worthy: I don't know, But it is you who are on trial.

— A.A. Milne

One's character, and courage, are tested so many times in one's life, in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, usually unannounced, and often without our even being aware of it. I wonder how many of us have failed—or passed—such a test in ignorance.

And I wonder if anyone or anything is keeping score.

© 2010 The Epicurean Dealmaker. All rights reserved.