Harry S. Truman, on one-time U.S. President, Richard Nixon:
'Richard Nixon is a no-good lying bastard. He can lie out of both sides of his mouth at the same time and if he ever caught himself telling the truth, he'd lie just to keep his hand in.'
There's nothing wrong with him that trying to make him see reason won't make worse.
Not all theatre managers are, or were, as well liked as Charles Frohman. He was respected and admired by actors, producers and theatre staff on both sides of the Atlantic. So it took an actress of extraordinary talent to make him show the less sunny side of his nature. One such lady was the redoubtable Mrs. Patrick Campbell. She and Frohman were perpetually at logger-heads, ending their rows with passing shots as antagonistic as this famous one. After one blazing argument in the middle of a rehearsal Mrs. Patrick Campbell stalked off the stage shouting over her shoulder:
'And I hope, Mr. Frohman, that you will remember in the future that I am an artist.'
'Don't worry, I won't breathe a word of your secret,' Frohman shouted after her.
He thinks the world's against him. It's the only thing he and the world see eye to eye on.
Bernard Shaw's attitudes to conventional behaviour have become infamous. Many of his contemporaries found them impossible to cope with — not so the lady who received this telegram in reply to a lunch invitation:
'Certainly not; what have I done to provoke such an attack on my well known habits.'
Rather than smart in silence, she immediately sent a telegram in reply saying:
'Know nothing of your habits; hope they are not as bad as your manners.'
He boasts that he has the manners of a gentleman. But he doesn't say whose they are.
The famous Victorian playwright, Sir Arthur Wing Pin-ero, once concluded a letter to a fellow author with the greeting:
'Yours with admiration and detestation.'
I can see you've got a rare talent. You don't just take pains with everything you do — you share them with everyone else.
'I have to believe in the Apostolic Succession,' the Rev. Sydney Smith told a colleague. "There is no other way of explaining the descent of the Bishop of Exeter from Judas Iscariot.'
You may not have many faults but you certainly make the most of the ones you have.
The Prince Regent, later King George IV, was a close friend of Beau Brummell in his younger days. But following a gradual cooling off, their friendship turned to open hostility after this memorable clash at a reception at which the Prince was the guest of honour. Brummell had arranged to join three others, holding candles to form a 'guard of honour' for the Prince when he arrived. They took up their positions on either side of the door when the footman announced the royal guest. But when he entered the room the Prince made a point of deliberately greeting everyone, except Brummell, in the warmest tones. He passed his old friend without a word and was on the point of speaking to his hostess when Brummell asked one of the others in stage-whisper:
'Alvaney, who's your fat friend?'
I remember someone once telling you to be yourself. That was the worst piece of advice you ever had.
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