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Thursday, June 22, 2006

The quicker they come?

I don't usually make a habit of picking up political biographies, historical or current. The ideas and subject matter are generally obsolete the moment they hit bookstore shelves. I believe my time is better spent in other genres.
But the other day I was intrigued when I picked up one such book at Richard Fitzpatrick's bookstore. It was The Chief: A Political Biography of Maurice Duplessis. Duplessis was a controversial Quebec politician in his day and probably remains so. The author's grandson, who shares the same name, is Leslie Roberts of Global News.
Anyway, there was one of those 'Signed' bookmarks sticking out of the book and I opened it up to the title page. It had an authorial inscription the likes I have not read before... and I laughed my head off. Though I probably shouldn't have.

For Audrey, of whom one can say
that good women come from Cornwall
and the better they are, the quicker
they come. With love
Leslie Roberts - Nov 12/63

A cursory seach on google dot com reveals a similar quote, this one in reference to journalist John Bartlow Martin:

"On 31 July 1946 the Indianapolis Times informed its readers that one of its former reporters, Martin, was "scrambling all over Indianapolis and the state, digging up material for ... a regional study of Hoosierland." While writing what became the book Indiana: An Interpretation, Martin, who had assumed he would hate Indiana because of his rocky childhood, instead was surprised to discover "a certain affection suffusing parts of the book; and when I quoted the old saw 'Many good men come from Indiana, and the better they are the quicker they come,' it was more in jest than in bitterness." "


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's Leslie Roberts(grandson) here..
What makes this even funnier..Audrey was my mom.. Leslie's daughter-in-law! No wonder she got rid of the book!
My brother and I had a good laugh.. thanks
Any chance I could get the book as a memento?

Friday, January 05, 2007 3:54:00 PM  
Blogger John MacDonald said...

check your email Leslie...let's bargain.

Friday, January 05, 2007 5:57:00 PM  
Blogger John MacDonald said...

after you're done reading the news, that is.

Friday, January 05, 2007 5:58:00 PM  

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