Quotations about   retirement

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BOB: You know I’m retired from hero work.
EDNA: As am I, Robert, yet here we are!

Brad Bird (b. 1957) American director, animator and screenwriter [Phillip Bradley Bird]
The Incredibles (2004)
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Added on 4-Sep-19 | Last updated 4-Sep-19
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What good is having laurels if you can’t rest on them?

Tom Lehrer (b. 1928) American mathematician, satirist, songwriter
People (11 Jan 1982)
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Lehrer has used the phrase and variants many times over the years.
Added on 2-Jun-16 | Last updated 2-Jun-16
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You do not play then at whist, sir! Alas, what a sad old age you are preparing for yourself!

[Vous ne jouez donc pas le whist, monsieur? Hélas! quelle triste vieilesse vous vous préparez!]

Charles Maurice, Prince de Talleyrand-Périgord (1754-1838) French statesman
(Attributed)

In Amédée Pichot, Souvenirs Intimes sur M. de Talleyrand, "Le Pour et le Contre" (1870).
Added on 17-Dec-15 | Last updated 17-Dec-15
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But I think a life of raising prize cattle, going shooting two or three times a year, fishing in the summer, and interspersing the whole thing with some golf and bridge — and whenever I felt like talking or writing, doing it with abandon and with no sense of responsibility whatsoever — maybe such a life wouldn’t be so bad.

Dwight David Eisenhower (1890-1969) American general, US President (1953-61)
Letter to Alfred M. Gruenther (2 Nov 1956)
Added on 3-Sep-15 | Last updated 3-Sep-15
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Few men of action have been able to make a graceful exit at the appropriate time.

Malcolm Muggeridge (1903-1990) British journalist, author, media personality, satirist
Chronicles of Wasted Time: An Autobiography (1972)
Added on 17-Aug-15 | Last updated 17-Aug-15
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The ambitious deceive themselves when they propose an end to their ambition; for that end, when attained, becomes a means.

François VI, duc de La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680) French epigrammist, memoirist, noble
Réflexions ou sentences et maximes morales [Maxims], # 32 (1665-1678)
Added on 8-Apr-15 | Last updated 8-Apr-15
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Most men that do thrive in the world do forget to take pleasure during the time that they are getting their estate, but reserve that till they have got one and then it is too late for them to enjoy it.

Samuel Pepys (1633-1703) English diarist, naval administrator
Diary (10 Mar 1666)
Added on 27-Mar-15 | Last updated 27-Mar-15
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Let the sweet Muses lead me to their soft retreats, their living fountains, and melodious groves, where I may dwell remote from care, master of myself … let me no more be seen in the wrangling forum, a pale and odious candidate for precarious fame … let me live free from solicitude … and when nature shall give the signal to retire may I possess no more than I may bequeath to whom I will. At my funeral let no token of sorrow be seen, no pompous mockery of woe. Crown me with chaplets; strew flowers on my grave, and let my friends erect no vain memorial to tell where my remains are lodged.

Tacitus (c.56-c.120) Roman historian, orator, politician [Publius or Gaius Cornelius Tacitus]
“A Dialogue on Oratory,” sec. 13, Dialogus, Agricola, Germania

In The Works of Tacitus, Oxford trans., rev., vol. 2, (1854). The above is the version read at the funeral for Justice Hugo Black. The printed version differs in reading, at the start, "Me let the sweet Muses lead," and in using "anxious" for "odious."

Alt trans. (Peterson (1914)): "As for myself, may the 'sweet Muses,' as Virgil says, bear me away to their holy places where sacred streams do flow, beyond the reach of anxiety and care, and free from the obligation of performing each day some task that goes against the grain. May I no longer have anything to do with the mad racket and the hazards of the forum, or tremble as I try a fall with white-faced Fame. I do not want to be roused from sleep by the clatter of morning callers or by some breathless messenger from the palace; I do not care, in drawing my will, to give a money-pledge for its safe execution through anxiety as to what is to happen afterwards; I wish for no larger estate than I can leave to the heir of my own free choice. Some day or other the last hour will strike also for me, and my prayer is that my effigy may be set up beside my grave, not grim and scowling, but all smiles and garlands, and that no one shall seek to honour my memory either by a motion in the senate or by a petition to the Emperor."
Added on 16-Apr-10 | Last updated 20-Jun-16
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When I had youth I had no money; now I have the money I have no time; and when I get the time, if I ever do, I shall have no health to enjoy life. I suppose it’s the discipline I need; but it’s rather hard to love the things I do, and see them go by because duty chains me to my galley. If I ever come into port with all sails set, that will be my reward perhaps.

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) American writer
(Attributed) (1873)

Quoted in M. Saxton, Louisa May, ch. 17 (1977).
Added on 7-Oct-08 | Last updated 16-Apr-19
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