Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Cheney Syndrome

Learning of Dick Cheney's latest hospitalization somehow recalls to mind the response: "Hope it's nothing trivial." But who said it first? I had thought Ben Hecht (1894-1964). but John stumbles onto it in the Wiki on The Rev. Sir John Pentland Mahaffy (1839-1919). Since the Wiki apparently comes from the storied 11th ed of the Encyclopedia Britannica (1910-11), the dates make it unlikely (though I grant, possible) that Hecht said it first: maybe he got it from Brit 11. Apparently Mahaffy also said:
James Joyce is a living argument in favour of my contention that it was a mistake to establish a separate university for the aborigines of this island – for the corner boys who spit into the Liffey.
Hecht might have wished he said that one, too.

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