I'm working on several posts about history—historiography, philosophy of history and contemporary history. In the mean time, I'll put out this post: Not quite ephemera, but not terribly serious either.
I live by a series of aphorisms.
These don't represent a fully worked-out philosophical framework. I have one of those, but these aphorisms aren't it. Rather, these epigrams are simply wise words to live by. Sensible directives that aren't quite rules per se, but not merely quotes-of-the-day either.
I've picked them up from all sorts of unlikely places and people—Michelle Shocked, George Bernard Shaw, etc. Over the years, I've been adding and subtracting to this list. The first four have stood up fairly well over the last decade. The last three are still on a trial basis.
1. The secret to a long life is knowing when it's time to go.
2. There's no such thing as an indiscreet question. There are only indiscreet answers.
3. Never get down in the mud to wrestle with a pig. You'll only get dirty, and the pig will enjoy it.
4. Always book your next gig before your last one opens.
5. The best deal is the one you're willing to walk away from.
6. Never ascribe to malice what can be explained by incompetence.
7. If two people know a secret, then it's no secret at all.
These aphorisms have kept me in good stead. Do feel free to use any or all.