The Master and Le Guide

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“‘I’m going to be strict, but fair.’ That’s what all teachers say at the beginning of the year,” a friend once complained to me. Well, this year I’m going to do better than that.

Recently I was out with the wife for Date Night – this is what it’s come to etc – and she was looking at the cocktail list. (I stay away from those things, as I am skeptical of drinks with more than two ingredients.) The list featured the “Freddie Quell,” which she remarked was an odd name for a drink. “Wait,” I said, “I know that name…”

Thus began my recollection of The Master. (If you want to imagine a date with me, just ask a guy to semi-coherently explain a film you haven’t seen while he sips a two ingredient drink.)

Anyway, I decided to watch it again, and quite liked it again, particularly because it provides me half my new Day One Speech:

I am a writer, a doctor, a nuclear physicist, a theoretical philosopher. But above all, I am a man, a hopelessly inquisitive man…

 

The remainder of my speech comes, naturally, from Mobutu Sese Seko’s address marking the 16th anniversary of the Popular Movement of the Revolution, delivered in Kinshasa on May 19, 1983:

Here is my motto: “Always Serve.” This motto is inscribed on the top of my staff.

(Author’s note: I am grateful to my friend Steve for his recent gift of the volume below, without which, honestly, my recollection of the address would be iffy.)

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