The water of life was given to us to make us see for a while that we are more nearly men and women, more nearly kind and gentle and generous, pleasanter and stronger than without its vision there is any evidence we are.
Between the amateur and the professional . . . there is a difference not only in degree but in kind. The skillful man is, within the function of his skill, a different integration, a different nervous and muscular and psychological organization. . . . A tennis player or a watchmaker or an airplane pilot is an automatism but he is also criticism and wisdom.
You can no more keep a martini in the refrigerator than you can keep a kiss there. The proper union of gin and vermouth is a great and sudden glory; it is one of the happiest marriages on earth and one of the shortest-lived.
New England is a finished place. Its destiny is that of Florence or Venice, not Milan while the American empire careens onward toward its unpredicted end. . . . It is the first American section to be finished to achieve stability in the conditions of its life. It is the first old civilization, the first permanent civilization in America.
Bernard de Voto (1897 - 1955)
Source: New England: There She Stands. In Harper's Magazine, March 1932