It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face in marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
Theodore Roosevelt in a speech delivered at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910
The address can be read in its entirety at the Theodore Roosevelt Association site. It is chock full of amazing and inspiration insight. Here’s another favorite of mine:
Probably the best test of true love of liberty in any country in the way in which minorities are treated in that country. Not only should there be complete liberty in matters of religion and opinion, but complete liberty for each man to lead his life as he desires, provided only that in so he does not wrong his neighbor.
I was reintroduced to this after seeing the first quote on Destraynor’s site.
China’s strategy generally exhibits three characteristics: meticulous analysis of long-term trends, careful study of tactical options, and detached exploration of operational decisions.
On China by Henry Kissinger
An interesting balance there.
As long as we embrace (or even accept) standardized testing, fear of science, little attempt at teaching leadership and most of all, the bureaucratic imperative to turn education into a factory itself, we’re in big trouble.
Seth Godin, Back to (the Wrong) School
Nancy Wake, Special Agent, Saboteur, World War II’s Most Decorated Woman
a New Zealander brought up in Australia. She became a nurse, a journalist who interviewed Adolf Hitler, a wealthy French socialite, a British agent and a French resistance leader. She led 7,000 guerrilla fighters in battles against the Nazis in the northern Auvergne, just before the D-Day landings in 1944. On one occasion, she strangled an SS sentry with her bare hands. On another, she cycled 500 miles to replace lost codes. In June 1944, she led her fighters in an attack on the Gestapo headquarters at Montlucon in central France.
John Lichfield – Resistance heroine who led 7,000 men against the Nazis
Ms. Wake stands as an inspiration to step up and get the job done, regardless of the expectations of others. In her case, it extended far beyond the years she served, as noted in John Litchfield’s article, “Ms Wake was also furious the TV series suggested she had had a love affair with one of her fellow fighters. She was too busy killing Nazis for amorous entanglements, she said.”
She was too busy killing Nazis…
The Gestapo’s dubbed her The White Mouse as she continued to evade them, and by 1943 she topped their most-wanted list.
Yeah. The definition of badass.
I have no doubt that her story will stick with you for years to come. I know it will stay with me.
As my dad’s side of the family originates from Wales, I have some kilt-wearing blood flowing through my veins, but unlike the Scots, the Welsh don’t have a history of using tartans to recognize families or clans. In fact, there’s some argument as to how long the Welsh have worn kilts. I don’t care about the latter, but I did want to see what might be available for a Jones boy in Texas.Luckily, I have at least two options, one for my last name and one for my home state. The first is the Jones Tartan, created in the late 1990′s (again, no history of tartans), though it is included in The Scottish Registrar of Tartans. The tartan’s designers, Rosalind Jones with input from Peter MacDonald, did an amazing job, and their explanation shows the thought put into the creation:
The second option is the official tartan of the state of Texas, created by June Prescott McRoberts of Salado to celebrate the Sesquicentennial (celebrating independence from Mexico 150 years earlier). It’s based on the Bluebonnet, our state flower, and thus uses a base of blue with a touch of red and green.
The design symbolises Jones roots in Wales and the name’s global spread. The heart of the sett reflects the green and white of the Welsh flag with its red dragon. From Wales people with the name of Jones moved to England, represented by pale green together with the red and white cross of St. George. Many Scots bear the name of Jones, and Scotland is represented by the blue and white perimeter. When viewed diagonally this creates the cross of St. Andrew, the Scottish saltire The black band represents the ocean deeps that separate all the people named Jones who now live far from Britain but whose roots remain here.
While I don’t expect to drop $500+ on a full, official kilt soon, it’s great to know that I have two great options.
I just picked up a modern kilt created by Nation Kilt, in a solid olive cloth, which I am very excited to own and plan to wear throughout South by Southwest Interactive as a part of the Five Kilts crew. There will be many photos posted.
Tartan images from The Scottish Registrar of Tartans