Thursday, April 1, 2010


"Better a witty fool than a foolish wit," Shakespeare once said. Mark Twain puffed on his cigar and quipped, "It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt." Hunter S. Thompson took a swig of Wild Turkey and a hit of Nitrous Oxide and exclaimed, "No man is so foolish but he may sometimes give another good counsel, and no man so wise that he may not easily err if he takes no other counsel than his own. He that is taught only by himself has a fool for a master."

It's April Fools Day, and every jack-a-napes will be pranking and joking with you, so I figured we'd start with some witty quotes from the masters. What kind of fool are you? There are unwitting fools, sly fools, educated fools, simple fools, lovestruck fools, fools in motley, jesters and Republicans. The holy fool conceals truth under the mask of foolishness, and wisdom in the disguise of folly.

At one time or another, everybody plays the fool. The Main Ingredient had a sappy pop song about it that is nonetheless catchy as hell. Sing it in the shower sometime. Alexander Pope, writing "An Essay on Criticism" in 1711, said "Fools rush in where angels fear to tread," which was put to music in the 1940s and covered by Sinatra and a host of others. Ricky Nelson had a huge hit with it a decade later, and released it on his celebrated album, "Ricky Nelson Sings Alexander Pope." There are some great songs about fools, and you'd be a fool to miss them. Enjoy!

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