maxjmartin.com

Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to his Son

Book notes for “Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to his Son”, by George Horace Lorimer

Last annotated on January 15, 2017

Nothing earns better interest than judicious questions, and the man who invests in more knowledge of the business than he has to have in order to hold his job has capital with which to buy a mortgage on a better one. location 857

I simply mention Lem in passing as an example of the fact that when you’re through sizing up the other fellow, it’s a good thing to step back from yourself and see how you look. Then add fifty per cent. to your estimate of your neighbor for virtues that you can’t see, and deduct fifty per cent. from yourself for faults that you’ve missed in your inventory, and you’ll have a pretty accurate result. location 1296

The one important thing for you to remember all the time is not to forget. It’s easier for a boss to do a thing himself than to tell some one twice to do it. Petty details take up just as much room in a manager’s head as big ideas; and the more of the first you store for him, the more warehouse room you leave him for the second. location 1332

Some men do a day’s work and then spend six lolling around admiring it. They rush at a thing with a whoop and use up all their wind in that. And when they’re rested and have got it back, they whoop again and start off in a new direction. They mistake intention for determination, and after they have told you what they propose to do and get right up to doing it, they simply peter out. location 1441

There’s nothing in this talk that two can live cheaper than one. A good wife doubles a man’s expenses and doubles his happiness, and that’s a pretty good investment if a fellow’s got the money to invest. location 1617

It was pretty rough sailing, you bet, but one way and another we managed to get a good deal of satisfaction out of it, because we had made up our minds to take our fun as we went along. With most people happiness is something that is always just a day off. But I have made it a rule never to put off being happy till to-morrow. Don’t accept notes for happiness, because you’ll find that when they’re due they’re never paid, but just renewed for another thirty days. location 1808

A married man is worth more salary than a single one, because his wife makes him worth more. He’s apt to go to bed a little sooner and to get up a little earlier; to go a little steadier and to work a little harder than the fellow who’s got to amuse a different girl every night, and can’t stay at home to do it. location 1835