A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

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"The Speaker" Articles

A book I published containing 112 pieces Chesterton wrote for the newspaper "The Speaker" at the beginning of his career.

They are also available for free electronically on another blog of mine here, if you wish to read them that way.




Wednesday, February 1, 2012

"Where Ought I to Be?"

From  T.P.'s Weekly, April 24, 1914

There is an old adage which declares that great men are absent-minded, while an equally hoary saying describes genius as "an infinite capacity for taking pains." Perhaps in no man who can lay claims to genius are these two opposite qualities of greatness better exemplified than in that modern perpetrator of paradox, G. K. Chesterton. For, infinite as are his capacities for taking pains in the literary sense, his wife, to a very large extent, acts as his "business conscience," and it is said that she accompanies him on almost every journey, performing such small but necessary duties as the getting of tickets and the consulting of "Bradshaw."

Where Ought I to Be?

It is recorded, however, that on one occasion visitors arrived, and Mrs. Chesterton being called upon to play the part of hostess, was unable to accompany her husband. With the words, "Now, Gilbert, you know where you are to lecture and what your subject is?" Chesterton went to the railway station. Arriving there, he banged down a sovereign at the booking office, and said, "A ticket."
 "Where for ? " asked the astonished clerk. 
 "Free Trade Hall," replied Chesterton. 
 "Oh, Glasgow then ?" said the clerk, and Gilbert, assenting, received a ticket for that station.
 Stepping into the street at Glasgow, he was hailed by a friend : "Hullo, Chesterton, what are you doing here?"
"Oh, I'm lecturing at the Free Trade Hall."
" Oh no, you're not," said the friend.
"Oh, yes, I am," protested Chesterton. " I booked the engagement some months ago."
" But you cannot be," maintained the friend, "for the place is being renovated and the painters are in."
It slowly dawned upon Chesterton that he was at the wrong place, and he, further to justify his claim to greatness, sent a telegram to his wife : " Am here. Where ought I to be?"

A 'Bus Story. 

It is always said that no one enjoys a joke more than Chesterton , and, even when the joke tells against himself, he never fails to be heard laughing above the whole company. It is related that a certain man told of an act of politeness he had witnessed. He had seen a man give up his seat in a tram-car to a lady. "That's nothing," said one of the company. " What about old Chesterton here? I saw him get up and give his seat to three ladies." The company roared, but louder than the others was heard the jovial laughter of Chesterton . It is in more respects than one that Chesterton lays claims to "greatness."

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