advice for the ambitiousm, young man who wants to get ahead in the world, by leonard woolf
Say, Lenny - can I call you Lenny? - you were a man of the world, you did all kinds of stuff, can I ask you for some advice?. You married Virginia Woolf (what a coincidence!), you wrote books, you did all sorts of political work, ran your own publishing house, and so on and so forth. Any helpful advice for a young man at the beginning of his career? Any cheerful thoughts to take with me on the way to...
Yeah. 'Kay. Thanks, Len. You're the best.Looking back at the age of eighty-eight over the fifty-seven years of my political work in England, knowing what I aimed at and the results, meditating on the history of Britain and the world since 1914, I see clearly that I achieved practically nothing. The world today and the history of the human anthill during the last fifty-seven years would be exactly the same as it is if I had played pingpong instead of sitting on committees and writing books and memoranda. I have therefore to make the rather ignominious confession to myself and to anyone who may read this book that I must have in a long life ground through between 150,000 and 200,000 hours of perfectly useless work.
-- Leonard Woolf, The Journey Not the Arrival Matters