February 28th Birthdays

“I am myself the subject of my blog; it is not reasonable to expect you to waste your leisure on a matter so frivolous and empty.”

Michel de Montaigne, French essayist, b. 1533. Actually, if you substitute the word “book” for “blog,” Montaigne wrote the sentiment quoted above in his Essais. Yet according to the encyclopedia, Montaigne’s essays were quoted by Shakespeare and imitated by Francis Bacon. So reasonable or not, I suppose someone was reading.
It may not be reasonable for you to waste your leisure reading the thoughts of a 47 year old homemaker, but here you are. I pray that I talk about more than just “I, myself.”
The anonymous (as far as I can tell) writer at So Many Books has been writing a series of weekly summaries and commentaries on Montaigne’s essays for quite some time. So head over there if you’d enjoy a taste of Montaigne.
Go here for an online translation of the essays themselves.
More advice for bloggers from Montaigne:
Don’t discuss yourself, for you are bound to lose; if you belittle yourself, you are believed; if you praise yourself, you are disbelieved.
When I am attacked by gloomy thoughts, nothing helps me so much as running to my books. They quickly absorb me and banish the clouds from my mind.
It is good to rub and polish our brain against that of others.
He who has not a good memory should never take upon himself the trade of lying.

3 thoughts on “February 28th Birthdays

  1. Does this mean that today is YOUR birthday? If so, many happy returns…
    Actually Sherry, you hardly ever discuss yourself. We would like to know more!
    Your quote about discussing yourself reminds me of getting credit for mothering. If your children are “successful” they get the credit. If they grow up to be “burdens on society” the neighbors blame the mother.

  2. No, not my birthday. I read your blog, but I still think my children should get most of the credit if they “turn out right” because I feel so inadequate most of the time.

  3. Of course, God should get the credit in all these things!

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