Two things came up at the same time for me. First, over the weekend my husband pointed out how Neil Gaiman is always himself. And then I came across this post on A Scenic Route about blog posts and why she follows certain blogs. After commenting, I realized that the very things I listed as what I like to read (cultures, writing, history, art, etc.) are the very things I don’t usually post on my own blog out of fear.
Why be afraid? I worry that I’ll come across as dry or incoherent, or *shudders* that I’ll get something wrong and look stupid. There’s also the possibility that my blog will turn into a random mess.
But that’s the thing. I’m random. Sometimes, I’ll go on these tangents and not make sense. Sometimes I get things wrong and have to correct myself. But that’s me. And if that turns people off, well, not much I can do about it.
There’s also the possibility that people who follow me for one thing will stop following me when I turn to something else. Again, not much I can do about it.
So, in the spirit of this, I’m going add some quotes by Napoleon with a few of my thoughts. Why? Because one of my daughters and I were learning about him today as part of homeschooling and some of the things he supposedly said fascinated me.
When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the government control the situation, since the hand that gives is above the hand that takes.(emphasis mine)
Men are Moved by two levers only: fear and self interest.
My husband and I once watched a documentary on the Vietnam War that pointed out that only 10% of the country was against the Vietcong, and only 10% of the country supported it. The other 80% went with whichever side made sure they were fed. The more I look at history, the more I believe this is how most people think.
More than that, though, it emphasizes something I thought about a while ago from a much more, um, benign perspective.
In politics nothing is immutable. Events carry within them an invincible power. The unwise destroy themselves in resistance. The skillful accept events, take strong hold of them and direct them.
All great events hang by a hair. The man of ability takes advantage of everything and neglects nothing that can give him a chance of success; whilst the less able man sometimes loses everything by neglecting a single one of those chances.
I’m adding these last two because I found them inspiring, for both writing and life in general. Didn’t expect that.
(As a side note, studying him today made me want to watch The Emperor’s New Clothes again. It’s a great what-if movie about Napoleon switching with a look-alike in an attempt to avoid exile and how it changes both the lives of those he encounters and the man himself.)
What do you think of these quotes? Of Napoleon? Of blogging? Feel free to share.