Resolutions When I Come To Be Old
by Jonathan Swift
Marry a young Woman.
Keep young Company unless they really desire it.
Be peevish or morose, or suspicious.
Scorn present Ways, or Wits, or Fashions, or Men, or War, etc.
Be fond of Children, or let them come near me hardly.
Tell the same Story over and over to the same People.
Neglect decency, or cleanliness, for fear of falling into Nastiness.
Be over severe with young People, but give Allowances for their youthfull follies, and Weaknesses.
Be influenced by, or give ear to knavish tattling Servants, or others.
Be too free of advise nor trouble any but those that desire it.
Desire some good Friends to inform me which of these Resolutions I break, or neglect, & wherein; and reform accordingly.
Talk much, nor of my self.
Boast of my former beauty, or strength, or favour with Ladies, etc.
Hearken to Flatteries, nor conceive I can be beloved by a young woman.
Be positive or opinionated.
Sett up for observing all these Rules, for fear I should observe none.
I've been meaning to show you that for some time. It applies today as much as ever.