Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Fierce Urgency of Now

 Via Professor DeLong, this anecdote
...the late Lloyd Bentsen, who liked to tell this story and claimed he'd gotten it from John F. Kennedy when they were freshmen in the House of Representatives together:
If you travel through Lorraine, between Neufchateau, Toul, Epinal, and Nancy you find the Chateau de Thorey-Lyautey, retirement home of the French Marshal Louis Hubert Gonzalve Lyautey. Around 1930 the nearly eighty year-old Marshal had a conversation with his landscaper:
Lyautey asked his landscaper if he would on the next day start planting a row of oaks to line the road up to the chateau.
"But Mon Marechal," said the gardener, looking at the aged Lyautey. "The trees will take more than fifty years to grow."
"Oh," said the Marshal. "In that case, we have no time to lose. Plant them this afternoon!"