Treasure Island

Ogden Nash

(August 19, 1902 – May 19, 1971 / New York / United States)

Possessions Are Nine Points Of Conversation


Some people, and it doesn't matter whether they are paupers or millionaires, Think that anything they have is the best in the world just because it is theirs. If they happen to own a 1921 jalopy, They look at their neighbor's new de luxe convertible like the wearer of a 57th Street gown at a 14th Street copy. If their seventeen-year-old child is still in the third grade they sneer at the graduation of the seventeen-year-old children of their friends, Claiming that prodigies always come to bad ends, And if their roof leaks, It's because the shingles are antiques. Other people, and if doesn't matter if they are Scandinavians or Celts, Think that anything is better than theirs just because it belongs to somebody else. If you congratulate them when their blue-blooded Doberman pinscher wins the obedience championship, they look at you like a martyr, And say that the garbage man's little Rover is really infinitely smarter; And if they smoke fifteen-cent cigars they are sure somebody else gets better cigars for a dime. And if they take a trip to Paris they are sure their friends who went to Old Orchard had a better time. Yes, they look on their neighbor's ox and ass with covetousness and their own ox and ass with abhorrence, And if they are wives they want their husband to be like Florence's Freddie, and if they are husbands they want their wives to be like Freddie's Florence. I think that comparisons are truly odious, I do not approve of this constant proud or envious to-do; And furthermore, dear friends, I think that you and yours are delightful and I also think that me and mine are delightful too.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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