Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Ideas for Birthday Card Greetings

Byron, Journal (December 1, 1813):
I shall soon be six-and-twenty. Is there any thing in the future that can possibly console us for not being always twenty-five?
Goethe, Faust, 6787-6789 (tr. David Luke):
Once over thirty you're as good as dead:
We'd do better to knock you on the head
At once, and finish you off straight away.

Hat einer dreißig Jahr vorüber,
So ist er schon so gut wie tot,
Am besten wär's, euch zeitig totzuschlagen.
Byron, On My Thirty-Third Birthday:
Through life's dull road, so dim and dirty,
I have dragg'd to three and thirty.
What have these years left to me?
Nothing — except thirty-three.
Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground (tr. J. Coulson):
I am forty now, and forty years is a lifetime; it is extreme old age. To go on living after forty is unseemly, disgusting, immoral! Who goes on living after forty? Give me a sincere and honest answer! I'll tell you: fools and rogues.
Charles Dickens, Martin Chuzzlewit, chapter 11:
Why a man with any feeling ought to be ashamed of being eighty, let alone more. Where's his religion, I should like to know, when he goes flying in the face of the Bible like that? Three-score-and-ten's the mark; and no man with a conscience, and a proper sense of what's expected of him, has any business to live longer.

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